‘Seinfeld’ and ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Actor Lou Cutell Dies at 91

Lou Cutell in Seinfeld

Veteran character actor Lou Cutell, known for playing proctologist Dr. “Assman” Cooperman in Seinfeld and Big Larry in Pee-wee’s Big Adventure, has died. He was 91.

Cutell’s passing was confirmed by his friend Mark Furman in a Facebook post, which stated, “After 91 years, and a great life, my friend Lou Cutell went home. A film, theater and character actor. Big Larry in ‘Pee Wee’s Big Adventure,’ Ass Man in ‘Seinfeld,’ Abe in ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ S12, E4. He took me to Lucille Ball’s house in 1986. Rest in peace Lou.”

Pee-Wee Herman also paid tribute to Cutell in a heartfelt Twitter thread, writing, “Besides my own film, my favorite thing Lou acted in was when he played an alien doctor in 1965’s Frankenstein Meets the Spacemonster. In real life, he was wonderful—sweet, caring and unassuming. He was also slyly and wickedly funny.”

Herman continued: “Lou was surrounded by family who loved him when he passed. A couple of days before, I was lucky enough to be able to tell him how much he meant to me and that I’d never forget him. It’s obvious and corny to say, but nevertheless true: he was amazing.”

Cutell was born on October 6, 1930, in New York City and began his acting career in the theater, most notably playing William Berry in The Young Abe Lincoln. He went on to feature in many films and television shows, with guest roles on classic series such as The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Golden Girls, Newhart, and My Three Sons. He also played Dr. Brainard in Honey I Shrunk the Kids.

One of Cutell’s most memorable roles was as Dr. Howard Cooperman in a 1996 episode of Seinfeld, “The Fusilli Jerry.” In the episode, Kramer accidentally receives someone else’s vanity license plates that read “ASSMAN,” and he surmises they belong to a proctologist. Kramer’s assumption proves correct after a chance meeting with Dr. Cooperman, the owner of the plates and self-proclaimed ASSMAN.