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David Rappaport

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Britisher David Rappaport earned more roles and respect than most guys his size (or ANY size for that matter) who attempted a professional acting career. Afflicted with dwarfism (he was 3' 11"), he was often typecast in bizarre, sometimes silly and demeaning roles; but, like others before him, including well-known actor Michael Dunn, he rose above it all and proved himself a talent to be reckoned with. He was born David Stephen Rappaport on November 23, 1951, in London and showed musical prowess at an early age. He learned how to play both the drums and the accordion, which helped him out financially during the lean years. He studied psychology at the University of Bristol in 1969 and graduated with a degree while developing a side interest in theatre, performing in plays and revues. Following graduation he married his college girlfriend, Jane, and had a son, Joe, the following year. He gave school teaching a try but left in 1977 to focus on his first love--acting. Returning to England, he built up his reputation on TV and developed celebrity status. He acted in and wrote for the program "Beyond the Groove" and performed in a couple of children's series to boot. Film showcases for David came unexpectedly with the scene-stealing role of Randall, the ringleader of a motley group of time-traveling thieves, in Time Bandits (1981), and in The Bride (1985) as Rinaldo, a little man who befriends a giant. American audiences got a good taste of David's charm and razor-sharp wit with the popular but short-lived series "The Wizard" (1986) as Simon, the inventor of odd and exciting toys who derived great pleasure out of being a good samaritan. He followed this with the attention-getting role of slick attorney Hamilton Skylar in a few episodes of "L.A. Law." However, personal unhappiness and acute depression set in during this time. On May 2, 1990, he took his own life, shooting himself in the chest with a .38 caliber revolver he had bought 15 days earlier. The 38-year-old actor was buried at the Waltham Abbey cemetery in England.


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