Original name, Leonard Hacker; born August 31, 1924, in Brooklyn, NY; died July 1, 2003, in Malibu, CA. Actor and comedian. Hackett launched his career asa stand-up comedian touring the resort circuit in upstate New York. He beganperforming on the stage as well as in television programs and films in the 1950s. Appearing regularly on The Jackie Gleason Show and The Jack Paar Show in the late 1950s, Hackett gained stardom in the 1960s with comic performances in such films as The Music Man (1962), It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963), and The Love Bug (1968). During the 1970s Hackett worked primarily in television, appearing frequently on game shows, including Celebrity Sweepstakes and You Bet Your Life, whichhe hosted. Hackett continued to work through the 1980s and 1990s, and he guest starred in a number of popular television series, including Murder, SheWrote in 1987, L.A. Law in 1993, and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch in 1998. Hackett also provided the voice for the character Scuttle in the highly popular animated film The Little Mermaid (1989). He was featured in "The College of Comedy with Alan King," a Great Performances special on PBS, in 1997.
June 30, 2003: Hackett dies on June 30, 2003, at his home in Malibu, California. He was 78. Source: New York Times, July 2, 2003, p.A23(L).