Actor and comedian Richard Belzer, famed for playing the police officer John Munch on Law & Order: SVU and Homicide: Life on the Street and across multiple shows, has passed away. He was 78.
Actress and friend Laraine Newman was reportedly the first to break the news of his death.
I’m so sad to hear of Richard Belzer’s passing. I loved this guy so much. He was one of my first friends when I got to New York to do SNL. We used to go out to dinner every week at Sheepshead Bay for lobster. One of the funniest people ever. A master at crowd work. RIP dearest. pic.twitter.com/u23co0JPA2
— Laraine Newman (@larainenewman) February 19, 2023
Belzer’s acerbic and conspiracy theory touting character of “Munch” quickly became a fan favorite. “Munch” would then be seen prominently in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit but also appeared in multiple shows, and networks, including The X-Files and since the character was a Baltimore native, The Wire on HBO. Belzer began playing the role in 1993 before retiring from acting in 2016.
The Twittersphere quickly reacted to news of Belzer’s death with peers and fans saluting the legend and giving him his props for a life well led. See reactions in the gallery.