Magician and actor Ricky Jay dies at 72

Actor and magician Ricky Jay died from natural causes in his Los Angeles home, longtime manager Winston Simone said Sunday. Jay was 72.

Jay, who died Saturday, appeared in the movie “Boogie Nights,” the television series “Deadwood” and various HBO and PBS specials. He was also “a writer and speaker on subjects as varied as conjuring, literature, con games, sense perception and unusual entertainments,” according to his website.

Born in Brooklyn, his birth name was Richard Jay Potash.

“He was an American treasure. We will never see the likes of this magnificent entertainer again,” Simone said.

Those who knew Jay offered their condolences and praised him for his wit and prowess as a magician.

Actor Neil Patrick Harris wrote: “The breadth of his knowledge and appreciation for magic and the allied arts was truly remarkable.”

Teller, half of the magician duo Penn <>& Teller, wrote: “To see one of his shows was to luxuriate in past and present, choice, witty language and dazzling sleight of hand.”