It is with a very heavy heart that we report the passing of iconic actor Dick Miller, who has died at the age of 90 (per Variety). The actor appeared in many roles over the years but, for horror fans, he was known for his appearances in films like Gremlins, Terminator, The Howling, The ‘Burbs, Burying the Ex, and a whole lot more. His career spanned more than six decades and included nearly 200 credits during that time.
When I was growing up, the Gremlins films were among my most watched and most adored titles. I had a stuffed Gizmo doll that I carried with me everywhere. One time, I took it with me to the movies and forgot it in the seat next to me. When I realized this, I burst out sobbing (I was seven-years-old, okay?) and made my parents turn around so that we could get him.
I remember when my parents rented Gremlins 2: The New Batch for me one Saturday morning as a surprise. I immediately put on the first Gremlins film and, the moment it was over, I put in the second film. We also had a VHS rewinder, so I put the first film in there to rewind while the second was playing. Once the second film was over, I swapped it with the first so I could rewatch the first while the second rewound. It was a vicious cycle where I rewatched both films all day that Saturday. I’m sure my parents were annoyed that they could use the TV but I was in heaven.
Dick Miller may not have been my favorite character in those films but he was in them…and that meant a lot. Any time I saw Miller in other roles, he was always “that guy from Gremlins!” and no one else. That’s the long-lasting impact his role in those films had on me.
To the friends and family of Dick Miller, I send my deepest condolences on your loss. To the multitude of fans around the world who adored his work, I mourn with you.
Rest in peace, Mr. Miller. Thank you for being a part of one of my most cherished childhood memories.