Wilford Brimley, Cocoon Actor and Face of Quaker Oats, Dead at 85

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Wilford Brimley, known for his work as a character actor in movies like Cocoon and The Natural, died on Saturday. He had been suffering from a kidney ailment, according to the New York Times. He was 85.

Brimley, who was a bodyguard for Howard Hughes before becoming an actor, found his breakout role as a plant foreman opposite Jack Lemmon in 1979’s The China Syndrome. Instantly recognizable by his walrus mustache, Brimley also appeared in several Sydney Pollack films, including Absence of Malice, The Electric Horseman, and The Firm, in which he played the film’s frightening security chief. He acted alongside longtime friend Robert Duvall in 1984’s The Natural and 1983’s Tender Mercies.

Often cast as a gruff curmudgeon, Brimley became the face of Quaker Oats in the 1990s, delivering the cereal brand’s famous slogan, “It’s the right thing to do and the tasty way to do it.” Tributes poured in on social media in the wake of Brimley’s death, with Stephen Colbert noting on Twitter, “RIP Wilford Brimley — so many great performances, but I’ll never forget seeing him sing this surprisingly tender ‘It’s Not Easy Being Green.’” Brimley is survived by his wife and three sons.

Wilford Brimley, Cocoon and The Natural Actor, Dead at 85