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Arte Johnson, a Star in Laugh-In Ensemble, Dies

Comedic actor's catchphrase was 'Verrry interesting'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 3, 2019 6:35 PM CDT
Actor Arte Johnson in 2008. Johnson died Wednesday at age 90.   (AP Photo/Shea Walsh, File)
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(Newser) – Actor Arte Johnson, who won an Emmy for comedy sketch work on the television show Laugh-In, has died in Los Angeles. He was 90, the AP reports. Family representative Harlan Boll says Johnson died early Wednesday of heart failure following a three-year battle with bladder and prostate cancer. No services have been planned, but his ashes will be spread in a private ceremony. Johnson was a non-Hodgkins lymphoma survivor after being diagnosed, then successfully treated, in 1997.

Johnson became known for his catchphrase "Verrry interesting" on Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In. The Michigan native won an Emmy in 1969 and was nominated two more times through his work on the hit ensemble show. One of his characters was Wolfgang, a cigarette-smoking German soldier who thought World War II was still going on. Johnson's other television appearances include Bewitched, The Partridge Family, Lost in Space, and The Donna Reed Show. Johnson appeared on several game shows, such as The Gong Show, The Match Game, and Wheel of Fortune. He narrated more than 80 audiobooks and did voiceover work for The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo, Justice League Unlimited and DuckTales. In 1954, Johnson began performing in several New York nightclubs. He landed his first job in the industry when he was cast in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, and retired from acting in 2006.

(Read more obituary stories.)

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