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Vachik Mangassarian, an Armenian actor known for his TV roles on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, NCIS, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, has died. He was 78.
Mangassarian died in Burbank from COVID-19-related complications, his manager, Valerie McCaffrey of McCaffrey Talent Management, told The Hollywood Reporter.
Born in Iran of Armenian descent, he emigrated to the U.S. at age 23 and worked as a waiter in Los Angeles as he set his eyes on a career in Hollywood.
Besides doing theater work, he had early roles in Iranian movies before landing his first American film role in The South’s Shark in 1978. Mangassarian played the role of a father in The Stoning of Soraya M, which starred Jim Caviezel and portrayed the stoning of an Iranian woman.
He also appeared in the movie Lost and Found in Armenia, which starred Angela Sarafyan and Jamie Kennedy in an landmark collaboration between Armenian and American actors.
Mangassarian most recently completed a supporting role in Paul Weitz’s new film Moving On, starring Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda.
As a supporter of the Armenian community, he anchored his own radio and a TV show, The Armenian National Network, for 10 years as he and guests discussed politics, film and art.
Survivors include his sisters, Linda Lalaian and Elda Hacopian.
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