James Karen (born Jacob Karnofsky; November 28, 1923 – October 23, 2018) was an American character actor of Broadway, film and television. Karen was best known for his roles in Poltergeist, The Return of the Living Dead, Invaders from Mars, and in The Pursuit of Happyness.
Karen was also known for his recurring television role as Tom Bradford's boss, Eliot Randolph in Eight is Enough. He also appeared in commercials for Pathmark which earned his nickname "Mr. Pathmark." He was nominated for a Saturn Award for his 1985 role in The Return of the Living Dead.
He was married to Susan Reed, the former actress and folk singer. They divorced in 1967 and in 1986, he married Alba Francesca. Karen had one son Reed. Their son's godfather was Buster Keaton. Karen was a good friend of Keaton.
Karen died on October 23, 2018 at his home in Los Angeles at the age of 94. The cause was cardio respiratory arrest.