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Tommy “Tiny” Lister, an actor best known for his comedic role as Deebo in Friday and the sequel Next Friday, has died. He was 62.
Lister’s manager, Cindy Cowan, told the Associated Press that Lister was found unconscious in his home in Marina del Rey on Thursday afternoon and pronounced dead at the scene.
Cowan said Lister was diagnosed with COVID-19 this year and had overcome the virus, but he became sick about a week ago and had trouble breathing.
The cause of death has not been released, and the coroner’s office is investigating.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department shared in a news release that homicide investigators were looking into an incident reported Thursday at 2:50 p.m. on the 4100 block of Via Marina in Marina del Rey regarding the death of a Black male adult.
The 6-foot-5 Lister grew popular for his tough-guy roles in the 1980s. Apart from starring in Friday (1995) and Next Friday (2000), he had roles in The Fifth Element (1997) and The Dark Knight (2008), starred as the villain Zeus in No Holds Barred (1989) and voiced the character Finnick in Zootopia (2016).
Lister also had two short stints in pro wrestling.
His Friday co-star Ice Cube took to social media to pay tribute. “RIP Tiny ‘Deebo’ Lister. America’s favorite bully was a born entertainer who would pop into character at the drop of a hat terrifying people on and off camera. Followed by a big smile and laugh. Thank you for being a good dude at heart. I miss you already,” he tweeted.
J.D. Witherspoon, the son of late actor John Witherspoon, who starred alongside Lister in Friday, wrote, “Rest in Peace Tiny Lister, my Dad always enjoyed working with you. Take care of each other up there. #RIPDeebo.”
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