Elf and Godzilla star Michael Lerner dies aged 81
| Last updated
Featured Image Credit: Startraks/Shutterstock/Warner Bros.
Beloved Elf and Godzilla star Michael Lerner has died aged 81.
The actor passed away over the weekend (8 April) and the news was revealed by his nephew, Sam, in a heartfelt Instagram post last night (9 April).
His family say they have 'lost a legend'.
He took on the role of Mayor Ebert in the 1998 sci-fi flick and was joined by the likes of fellow Hollywood icons Matthew Broderick (Ferris Bueller's Day Off) and Hank Azaria (Friends).
Widely regarded as everyone's go-to Christmas movie, Lerner played the character of Fulton Greenway - the strict boss of Buddy the Elf's father Walter, played by James Caan.
The Oscar-nominated actor also appeared in a whole array of other well-loved classics including Barton Fink, Clueless and Harlem Nights.
Nephew Sam Lerner, who starred on The Goldbergs, took to Instagram to share the devastating news.
He shared a series of 10 photos from his uncle's long career, beginning the emotional tribute with: "We lost a legend last night."
"It’s hard to put into words how brilliant my uncle Michael was, and how influential he was to me," he continued.
"His stories always inspired me and made me fall in love with acting. He was the coolest, most confident, talented guy, and the fact that he was my blood will always make me feel special."
Sam went on to say that 'everyone that knows him knows how insane he was— in the best way'.
"I’m so lucky I got to spend so much time with him, and we’re all lucky we can continue to watch his work for the rest of time," he went on.
Sam ended the caption writing: "RIP Michael, enjoy your unlimited Cuban cigars, comfy chairs, and endless movie marathon."
The Instagram post has since received a huge outpouring of condolences and words of support for the family alongside many other tributes celebrating the late Hollywood icon's decade-spanning career.
One Instagram user commented: "Truly a life long inspiration that paved the way for so many."
"Damn man. RIP," wrote another, "what a f***ing legend."
A third added: "One of the greatest ever. May his memory be a blessing."
"Truly a life long inspiration that paved the way for so many," posted a fourth, while a final Instagram user penned: "Rest in paradise to an absolute artist and legend."
RIP Michael Lerner.