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Vincent Schiavelli

With about 152 actor credits to his name, it’s safe to say that you’ve seen him more than once.  You may have even referenced him a few times in your life: “Remember that one weird guy in that movie?  Or what about when Sam is in the subway and he runs into that homeless-looking guy?”  He has an unforgettable face, yet he is an unknown name to many.  I guess that’s the fate of some of the best character actors.

vincent-schiavelli1

Look familiar?

The first time I saw Schiavelli was in the movie Better off Dead where he played a geometry teacher.  From then on, I always associated him as that guy who played the teacher.  Since a lot of folks I talk to haven’t seen Better Off Dead, I took to referring to him as the other ghost in the movie Ghost. The one that teaches Patrick Swayze’s character how to channel his anger into a form capable of affecting the world of the living.

Vincent’s life was cut short when he died at age 57 in 2005.  He had lung cancer.  I’m sure he would have done about a hundred more movies before founding a fine arts school or directing academy award-winning films.

Keep an eye out.  If you’re someone into film, you’re bound to spot Vincent Schiavelli in a number of movies made within the last 30 or so years.  Then you’ll be able to associate a name with an unmistakable face.

When did you first see Vincent Schiavelli in a movie?

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2 Comments

  1. Cat Schwamm
    Posted Sunday, April 19, 2009 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    I think I'm gonna have to say…Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

    Mr. Vargas: They sold their bodies to medicine for money. About $30, I think.
    Dr. Miller: Twenty-five.
    Jeff Spicoli: Righteous bucks!

    also

    Mr. Vargas: Are you in my class?
    Jeff Spicoli: I am today.

    Sad to hear that he died, even though it was several years ago. Yesterday at work we discovered that Wilt Chamberlain died in 1999 and I was very sad. It is unfortunate to grieve so long after the fact; you feel a little silly.

  2. Cat Schwamm
    Posted Sunday, April 19, 2009 at 4:20 am | Permalink

    I think I'm gonna have to say…Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

    Mr. Vargas: They sold their bodies to medicine for money. About $30, I think.
    Dr. Miller: Twenty-five.
    Jeff Spicoli: Righteous bucks!

    also

    Mr. Vargas: Are you in my class?
    Jeff Spicoli: I am today.

    Sad to hear that he died, even though it was several years ago. Yesterday at work we discovered that Wilt Chamberlain died in 1999 and I was very sad. It is unfortunate to grieve so long after the fact; you feel a little silly.

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