Blake Lively’s Father, Actor Ernie Lively, Is Dead At 74

Ernie Lively

Ernie Lively, a longtime character actor who also happens to be the father of Blake Lively, has died on Thursday at the age of 74. A 50-year veteran of the entertainment industry, Lively has credits in both television and film. He died due to cardiac complications, and was surrounded by his wife and all of his children, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Acting runs in the Lively family. A Baltimore, Maryland native, Ernie Lively worked as an English professor and served in the U.S. Marine Corps before taking up his lifetime profession: Acting. Lively succeeded in the industry as both an actor and an acting coach, working with several young performers over the years.

Ernie Lively found his way onto several incredibly popular television shows in the 1980s, including Fantasy Island, Fame, Remington Steele with Pierce Brosnan, Scarecrow and Mrs. King, and The Dukes of Hazzard. On that last one, Lively actually enjoyed a recurring role, playing Longstreet B. Davenport for three episodes in 1980. He’d also played a character named Dobro Doolan on the show in 1979, and returned to Dukes to play Clyde, The Guard in a 1984 episode.

Fans of Blake Lively probably recognize Ernie Lively from the time that he played the actual father of one of Blake’s characters, Bridget Vreeland, in the 2005 hit The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. That had to be a thrill for Ernie to get to play his daughter’s “father” in a major motion picture, and then to return three years later and resume the role in the sequel.

But as we mentioned earlier, acting runs in the Lively family. You no donut are extremely familiar with Blake Lively’s various credits, including The Shallows, The Town, A Simple Favor, and Green Lantern. You may also know her from her “couples-goal” relationship with Green Lantern co-star and funnyman Ryan Reynolds. In addition to Blake, though, Ernie helped to raise four other performers, including Jason Lively (National Lampoon’s European Vacation), Eric Lively (The L Word), Robyn Lively (Twin Peaks, Doogie Howser, M.D.) and Lori Lively (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine).

There’s no way that Ryan Reynolds could have known that his father-in-law was going to pass the day after his Aviation Gin brand launched a new Father’s Day commercial. It’s awkward, but it deserves a pass. Just uncomfortable timing.

We expect to see more tributes to Ernie Lively and the rest of the Lively family, like this one, to land on social media for the rest of the day:

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We’d also like to extend our sincere condolences to the entire Lively family for the loss of their patriarch.

Sean O'Connell
Managing Editor

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Sean created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.