Veteran stage actor Eddie Jones, best remembered for his turn as Superman’s kindly adoptive father Jonathan Kent on Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, passed away on July 6, 2019. He was 84 years old. His death was confirmed by the Interact Theatre Company, who issued this brief statement on his passing:
“Our treasured longtime member, dear friend and trusted colleague, Eddie Jones, passed away today,” they wrote on July 6. “Eddie was a true pillar of our company from its earliest days. An actor of keen wit and sharp instinct, when Eddie was on stage, you couldn’t take your eyes off him. When he was off-stage, his broad, bright smile would light up the room. Everyone who knew Eddie as a friend, or had the good fortune to share the stage with him, was touched by his gentle and generous nature. He will be deeply missed by all. ITC extends its deepest condolences to his dear, devoted wife Anita Khanzadian Jones, and extended family. May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest, Eddie.”
Jones was born on September 18, 1934, in Washington, Pennsylvania. After hitchhiking his way to California, Jones was working at a gas station when he was discovered by an agent. He went on to understudy for Charles Durning in the original Broadway production of Jason Miller’s That Championship Season in 1972. He also starred in Sam Shepard’s 1978 production of Curse of the Starving Class and was featured in a national tour of Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. Additionally, Jones was an off-Broadway regular for the Manhattan Theatre Club, Playwrights Horizons, The Public Theatre, and The Hudson Guild. He later won an L.A. Drama Critics Circle Award for his portrayal of Willy Loman in the Interact Theatre Company’s production of Death of a Salesman. According to Interact, Jones appeared in more than 250 plays throughout his long stage career.
Outside of the stage, Jones also enjoyed a rich film career that included portraying Marla Hooch’s widowed father in A League of Their Own and owner of War Admiral and Man o’ War, Samuel Riddle, in Seabiscuit. He also starred in Bloodbrothers, The First Deadly Sin, Prince of the City, Trading Places, Year of the Dragon, Stanley & Iris, Cadillac Man, The Grifters, The Rocketeer, Sneakers, Return to Me, and The Terminal. On the small screen, Jones gained further acclaim for his recurring role as Jonathan Kent alongside Dean Cain’s Clark Kent/Superman. He played the loving patriarch for 87 episodes across four seasons from 1993 to 1997. Jones later starred as the head of a spy agency on Syfy Channel’s The Invisible Man. More recently, the actor appeared in episodes of Veep and Aquarius.
He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Anita Khanzadian-Jones, along with his sisters, Elaine and Marilyn, and several nephews and nieces.