Tommy “Tiny” Lister Jr., who famously played Deebo in the Friday film franchise, has died at the age of 62.
According to TMZ, police found Lister’s body at his Marina Del Rey apartment on Thursday (December 10th) just before 3 p.m. local time. He was pronounced dead at the scene, but a cause was not immediately clear. Update: Lister’s manager told Variety that the actor had been displaying symptoms of COVID-19 in recent days.
Lister, who was blind in his right eye, played the neighborhood bully Deebo in the original 1995 Friday film and its 2000 sequel Next Friday. In a tribute posted to Twitter, Friday star Ice Cube wrote, “America’s favorite bully was a born entertainer who would pop into character at the top of a hat terrifying people on and off camera. Followed by a big smile and laugh. Thank you for being a good dude at heart. I miss you already.”
Lister’s other notable film roles included playing the Galactic President in The Fifth Element; Adam Sandler’s character’s older brother Cassius in Little Nicky; and the bail agent in Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie Brown. He also appeared in Sublime’s music video for “Santeria”.
Outside of acting, Lister wrestled in both the WWF and WCW under the name of Zeus.
RIP Tiny “Deebo” Lister. America’s favorite bully was a born entertainer who would pop into character at the drop of a hat terrifying people on and off camera. Followed by a big smile and laugh. Thank you for being a good dude at heart. I miss you already. pic.twitter.com/jIl8yEZU9c
— Ice Cube (@icecube) December 11, 2020