Skip to main content

Quantum Leap And Battlestar Galactica Stars Pay Tribute To Dean Stockwell After Death At 85

al calavicci worried on quantum leap
(Image credit: NBC)

If we knew the unknown, then the unknown wouldn't be the unknown, as it so so eloquently stated by Quantum Leap's resident cigar-chomping Admiral Al Calavicci. Unfortunately, it's now known that the man who uttered those words, Hollywood and TV legend Dean Stockwell, passed away this week at the age of 85. And with such a long legacy in the entertainment industry, it's no surprise that some of his former co-stars have shared some kind words in his memory.

Dean Stockwell reportedly passed away in his home on the morning of Sunday, November 7. It was apparently a peaceful death, and was the result of natural causes, according to Deadline. After the news started making the rounds, tributes started pouring in across the Internet for the actor, whose claim to fame was Quantum Leap, though he is fondly remembered for roles in a plethora of other projects, such as Battlestar Galactica, JAG, Married to the Mob and many more projects across both film and television. Arguably most notable on the theatrical side were his roles in David Lynch's recently topical Dune adaptation, as well as the classic Blue Velvet. (And yours truly thought he was the best part of the TV adaptation of Stephen King's The Langoliers.) 

Deborah M. Pratt, who voiced the supercomputer Ziggy in Quantum Leap on top of the live-action role of Troian Claridge, took to Instagram to remember Dean Stockwell.

Actress Lydia Cornell, who appeared in the very first episode of Quantum Leap, also shared her thoughts on social media. 

See more

Fellow acting legend Edward James Olmos, who headed up the Battlestar Galactica reboot for its acclaimed run, also paid tribute to Dean Stockwell, who served as the sci-fi series' devious antagonist John Cavil across the second, third, and fourth seasons. See what Olmos had to say below about his fellow co-star, with BSG not the only project they shared the screen in. 

See more

Having also portrayed the villainous Duke Nukem in the animated series Captain Planet, Dean Stockwell boasted sci-fi cred even beyond Quantum Leap and Battlestar Galactica. Most notably on the TV side, Stockwell appeared in episodes of The Twilight Zone, Star Trek: Enterprise and Stargate: SG-1. He also voiced Tim Drake in the beloved animated feature Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker. 

Dean Stockwell retired from acting back in 2015, with one of his final TV roles happening in former co-star Scott Bakula's hit CBS drama NCIS: New Orleans. Fans have been hoping for a Quantum Leap revival of some kind, especially with NCIS: NOLA no longer in production. (There were even plans for a feature film return, which seem to have fizzled.) While Stockwell wasn't expected to be a major part of any potential plans, there was always the hope that he would show up in some capacity. Now we'll just have to hope Sam can get around okay by his lonesome.

We at CinemaBlend send our thoughts and condolences to the family and friends of Dean Stockwell during their time of mourning.

Nick Venable

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.