‘Big Lebowski’ actor David Huddleston dies at 85

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LOS ANGELES  — David Huddleston, a character actor best known for portraying titular roles in “The Big Lebowski” and “Santa Claus: The Movie,” has died. He was 85.

JERSEY CITY, NJ - DECEMBER 02: Actor David Huddleston attends the 40th Anniversary Reunion Of ''The Waltons'' at Landmark Loew's - Jersey City on December 2, 2011 in Jersey City, New Jersey. (Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images)

Actor David Huddleston attends the 40th Anniversary Reunion Of ”The Waltons” at Landmark Loew’s – Jersey City on December 2, 2011 in Jersey City, New Jersey. (Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images)

Huddleston’s wife, Sarah C. Koeppe, says he died Tuesday of advanced heart and kidney disease in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Huddleston famously portrayed the blustery millionaire whose identity Jeff Bridges’ character is mistaken for in the 1998 cult comedy “The Big Lebowski.”

Other credits in his 55-year-long career include the films “Blazing Saddles,” ”The Producers” and “Santa Claus: The Movie,” as well as such TV series as “The West Wing,” ”Gilmore Girls” and “The Wonder Years.”

Huddleston was born in 1930 in Vinton, Virginia. He served as an aircraft engine mechanic in the U.S. Air Force before studying acting in New York.