American actor and stuntman Ted White, perhaps best known for his portrayal of slasher Jason Voorhees in the horror film “Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter,” has passed away, Movieweb reported.
White, who is reported to have died peacefully in his sleep, was 96 years old.
The outlet noted that though White had only portrayed the hockey mask-adorned killer one time, he had nevertheless become a “beloved horror icon” and was exceedingly popular among his colleagues and peers and fans on the horror convention circuit.
“The best storyteller you could have ever met”
The sad news of Ted White’s death was first shared on social media by horror documentarian Sean Clark, who wrote in a post on Friday, “As I’m here setting up at Monsterpalooza I just got hit with the news that my dear friend Ted White has passed away. I was told he passed away peacefully in his sleep at his home.”
“I’ve had the pleasure of knowing him and working with him for close to 20 years. He was my adopted grandpa and hands down the best storyteller you could have ever met,” he added. “I am going to miss you immensely and those steak dinners we always had. Also teasing you about your red, white & blue banner that made you look like you were running for President. My heart goes out to his wife Jeri and his sons. It was an absolute honor my friend.”
Famous for more than just a horror movie
Horror website Bloody Disgusting reported that while White is arguably best known for playing serial slasher Jason Voorhees in the 1984 “Friday the 13th” sequel — and is heralded by many horror fans as the “definitive depiction” of the killer — White was also famed as an actor and stuntman in dozens of non-horror films and TV shows.
In fact, he served as a stunt double for several other well-known actors, including Clark Gable, Lee Marvin, and even John Wayne.
According to Gizmodo, White first met Wayne on the set of 1949’s “The Sands of Iwo Jima,” in which the military veteran White served as a technical consultant and played a random Marine, and would go on to serve as Wayne’s stunt double in other movies beginning in 1952.
The outlet noted that White was born in Texas in 1926 and played football for the University of Oklahoma, after which he launched his career in the film industry, both as a stuntman and coordinator as well as a bit part actor.
Extensive acting and stunt work credits
According to White’s IMDb page, he had at least 76 actor credits to his name, though mostly just as an extra or bit character in various movies and TV shows and stretched from 1949 to 2001, though most of his work was dated to the 1970s and ’80s.
His stunt credits were just slightly more extensive at 87 and dated from 1953 to 2006, and covered everything from war movies and westerns to action flicks and comedies and just about everything else in between.