Character Actor M. Emmet Walsh Dies at 88, known for sleazy roles but loved on screen, leaves behind lasting legacy. #RIPEmmetWalsh

M. Emmet Walsh, a well-known character actor known for his naturalistic portrayals of unsavory characters, passed away at the age of 88 in St. Albans, Vermont. His manager, Sandy Joseph, confirmed his death in a hospital. Walsh, often praised for his performances in various movies, was dubbed “the poet of sleaze” by critic Roger Ebert. Ebert even created the Stanton-Walsh Rule, stating that any movie featuring either Harry Dean Stanton or M. Emmet Walsh in a supporting role cannot be entirely bad.

The Coen brothers, Joel and Ethan, cast Walsh as a detective in their debut film, “Blood Simple.” Despite minimal compensation, Walsh accepted the role and received critical acclaim for his portrayal. His success in “Blood Simple” led to additional roles in Coen brothers’ films and other movies throughout his career. Walsh’s ability to enhance subpar material and deliver strong performances made him a sought-after actor in the industry. He continued acting in recent years, appearing in films like “Knives Out” and TV shows like “American Gigolo.”

Walsh leaves behind no immediate survivors and resided in St. Albans and Culver City, California. Reflecting on his extensive body of work, Walsh expressed pride in his performances, stating that all his roles are like his children and will be his legacy in the industry.

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