‘Saturday Night Fever’ Star Val Bisoglio Dies at Age 95

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Bisoglio
Courtesy of John Murphy (Flickr CC0)

“Saturday Night Fever” star, Val Bisoglio, has passed away at the age of 95. According to his wife, Bonnie, he died near his Los Olivos, California home on Oct. 18, 2021. A cause of death has not been released.

Born Italo Valentino Bisoglio on May 7, 1926, in New York City. His parents immigrated to the United States from Italy. He learned to act under his coach Jeff Corey.  His first entry onto the stage was in 1964 on a New York stage.

In 1966, he made his debut on Broadway as Sergeant Carlino in Frederick Knott’s “Wait Until Dark.” By the late 1960s, he became an established TV actor. Bisoglio often played a tough cop with a Bronx accent or a minor gangland figure.

Bisoglio
Courtesy of @NBCNews (Twitter)

As his career began, he was involved in the Kennedy Administration’s Mobilization for Youth Program. It launched in 1961 on New York’s Lower East Side. The program was designed to help juvenile delinquency and to help fight poverty. It also assisted disadvantaged youths by supplying them with counseling, education, and job training.

His fans remember him as the blissful insouciant cook Sergeant Sal Pernelli on “M*A*S*H;” or as Danny Tovo on “Quincy M.E.;” John Travolta’s father in “Saturday Night Fever;” and as Indian Chief Gray Cloud in “The Frisco Kid.” In 1999, he played Murf Lupo in three episodes of “The Sopranos.”

Many people took to social media to pay tribute to the late actor. GF tweeted that his death was “Sad. He was funny when he appeared on MASH.” Many others mentioned that they would remember him from his role in “Quincy M.E.”

Laurie tweeted, “RIP Mr. Bisoglio. You gave us lots of laughs on M*AS*H and what better way to live than spread joy? My condolences to his family and friends.” SportCastaneda replied to a Twitter post, “I remember him from Saturday Night Fever. He played John Travolta’s dad. As I’m typing this, the guys on Night crew at work are listening to the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. RIP sir!”

He is survived by his wife, his sons, and his family. May he rest in peace.

Sources:

Variety: Val Bisoglio, Actor in ‘Saturday Night Fever’ and ‘M*A*S*H’, Dies at 95; by Katie Song

IMDb: Val Bisoglio; by I.S. Mowis

Top and Featured Image John Murphy’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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