Best known for his role as Jacques and Jean-Michael Renault in Twin Peaks, Walter Olkewicz sadly passed away at the age of 72 on April 6, 2021 (via Deadline). Walter was one of television’s most prominent character actors, appearing in a number of beloved shows over his career including Grace Under Fire, Seinfeld, Taxi, and ER (via IMDB).
The actor’s son, screenwriter Zak Olkewicz, said in a statement, “He was a good man who pushed his love for creativity and the arts into everything he did. He handed that passion down to me, and I look forward to passing it on to the grandchildren he loved so much.”
At the time of his death, Walter was worth around $1 million according to Idol Net Worth. The actor’s last role was in 2017’s Showtime revival of Twin Peaks, where he played Jean-Michael Renault, the brother of his original role Jacques. Zac told The Hollywood Reporter, “It was his first role in almost 15 years.”
Walter Olkewicz was best known for his roles in Twin Peaks
At the time of his death, Walter Olkewicz had been battling health issues for two decades, primarily infections from multiple knee surgeries, per The Hollywood Reporter, which eventually “forced him to take a break from acting.”
Zac Olkewicz revealed, “He did [his role in Twin Peaks] all from behind a bar to cover the fact that he couldn’t stand.” Prior to his final role in Twin Peaks, Walter starred in an episode of Everwood in 2002, as well as the films Par 6 – with Supernatural‘s Misha Collins – and the crime drama, Last Days.
The actor has left an overarching legacy in television. Viewers will recognize him most for his memorable role as Nick the cable guy in the Seinfeld episode “The Cadillac,” as well as his recurring role as Bubba on Dolly Parton’s variety show Dolly! between 1987 and 1988.
Walter also guest starred in episodes of Moonlighting, Family Ties, Married with Children, The A-Team, Cheers, and appeared opposite Jeff Conaway in the short-lived fantasy series Wizards and Warriors.
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