4 June 2014 1:07 PM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Matthew Cowles, a distinctive character actor and playwright who was married to actress Christine Baranski, died of congestive heart failure in New York City on May 22. He was 69.

Cowles made a career of playing villains who come to a bad end. He often joked that he “made a living dying.” He will be best remembered for his portrayal of Billy Clyde Tuggle, the pimp who terrorized the town of Pine Valley on ABC’s “All My Children.” His work on the soap opera spanned four decades, as his role recurred throughout the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s and again in 2013, when the show was temporarily resurrected. The role garnered Cowles a daytime Emmy nomination.

Other memorable roles for Cowles included Monkey John, whom he portrayed in the TV miniseries “Lonesome Dove” (1989), and a schizophrenic homeless man named Lemonhead in an episode of “Law & Order” (1991). Other film and television credits include “Midnight Cowboy, »


- Carmel Dagan

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