Dennis Farina, the best-loved American actor best known as Detective Joe Fontana on Law & Order, is being remembered in the television and movie world following his death at the age of 69 this week. Farina - whose style was so inimitable that producers and directors called for 'Dennis Farina types' when casting cops and mobsters - died in Scottsdale, Arizona after suffering a blood clot in his lung.

Farina, who worked as a real life police officer before turning to television and movies, was gifted with a naturalistic acting presence that flourished in the likes of Saving Private Ryan, Snatch and on Crime Story.

One of his last television roles came on Fox's smash-hit sitcom New Girl, on which he played Jake Johnson's character's flamboyant and estranged con man father whose attempts to reconnect with his sibling turn out to be an elaborate scam. 

Stars of the show paid tribute to Farina on Twitter, with Zoeey Deschanel saying: "I am completely devastated about Dennis Farina's passing, I was lucky to have witnessed his charm and brilliance."

Jake Johnson, who plays Nick Miller, told followers: "RIP Dennis Farina. What a tremendous loss."

Lamorne Morris said: "In shock about the loss of Dennis Farina. RIP to the man with the most awesome head of hair. Great man!"

A Sicilian American who hailed from Chicago, Farina boasted unique mix of the Mediterranean and the Midwest, which made for brooding, dangerous and affable characters,

Though it was doomed from the very beginning, HBO's horse-racing series Luck featured one of Dennis Farina's most naturalistic performances, as a sidekick to Dustin Hoffman's mobster character.

He will be sadly missed.

Dennis FarinaDennis Farina At A Screening of 'Luck' In Los Angeles

Dennis Farina
Dennis Farina At The Tribeca Film Festival