John Paragon, ‘Pee-wee’s Playhouse’ star, dead at 66

John Paragon, the actor who portrayed Jambi the Genie on “Pee-wee’s Playhouse,” has died. He was 66.

An official at the Riverside County Coroner in California confirmed to Fox News that Paragon died back on April 3 in Palm Springs. His cause of death has not been revealed.

Paragon reportedly got his start in the acting industry at The Groundlings, a theater school in Hollywood where he performed improv alongside Phil Hartman, Paul Reubens and Cassandra Peterson.

John Paragon

He made his debut on television in “The Pee-wee Herman Show,” which was created in 1980. Beginning in 1986, Paragon reprised his role as Jambi the Genie in “Pee-wee’s Playhouse,” which ended in 1990. According to Yahoo, Paragon also wrote and directed multiple episodes of the kids’ series.

Two decades after “Pee-wee’s Playhouse” ended, Paragon portrayed the genie on stage in an adaptation of “Pee-wee Herman.”

But the genie wasn’t the only role Paragon held throughout his career. He starred in several TV shows on including “Cheers,” “Seinfeld,” “Pacific Blue,” “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” and “Elvira’s Movie Macabre.”

Paragon also had a recurring role in “The Breather.” As for his presence on the big screen, the actor appeared in “Honey I Blew Up the Kid,” “The Frog Prince,” “Echo Park” and “Airplane II: The Sequel.”


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