Conrad Janis, the “Mork & Mindy” star who played Mindy’s father, died on March 1 in Los Angeles, his business manager confirmed to The New York Times. He was 94.
In addition to acting, Janis was also a jazz trombonist and appeared on Broadway several times early in his career. He made his film debut in the 1945 comedy “Snafu” and appeared on the big and small screens through the early 2010s. After landing several film and TV roles, he got his biggest break on “Mork & Mindy” in 1978, where he played Fred McConnell, the father of Pam Dawber’s title character.
Janis was born Feb. 11, 1928, in Manhattan to New York art collectors and gallerists Sidney and Harriet Janis. He appeared in the Broadway play “The Dark of the Moon” and was spotted by a Hollywood talent scout, which led to his roles in “Snafu,” “Margie,” “The Brasher Doubloon,” “The Hagen Girl,” “Beyond Glory,” “Get Smart,” “My Favorite Martian,” “Maude,” “Airport 1975,” “Happy Days” and more through the early 1970s.
On “Mork & Mindy,” he played Mindy’s loving, overprotective father on the show, which ran from 1978 to 1982. He starred alongside Robin Williams, Dawber, Elizabeth Kerr, Tom Poston, Jonathan Winters and more, though the series served as Williams’ breakout role.
After “Mork & Mindy,” Janis appeared in “The Golden Girls,” “Mr. Saturday Night,” “The Cable Guy,” “Frasier,” “Maneater” and more. During his Hollywood career, he also regularly played jazz with his band in Beverly Hills.
Janis is survived by his brother; his children, Christopher and Carin Janis; two grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.