Vale: Richard Lewis

Veteran US actor and comedian Richard Lewis, best known for Curb Your Enthusiasm, has died.

Veteran US actor and comedian Richard Lewis, best known for Curb Your Enthusiasm, has died, aged 76.

He died due to a heart attack at his Los Angeles home on Tuesday.

Lewis (pictured right) announced last April he had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and was retiring from stand-up comedy.

Lewis, who played a semi-fictionalised version of himself throughout the 24 years of Curb Your Enthusiasm, was known for his neurotic, self-deprecating style of comedy while dressed in all black, leading to his nickname ‘The Prince of Pain.’

He rose to prominence in the 1980s with appearances on The Tonight Show and The Late Show with David Letterman, followed by HBO comedy specials into the 1990s.

His credits include Anything but Love opposite Jamie Lee Curtis which ran for four seasons, plus Robin Hood: Men in Tights, Leaving Las Vegas, Hugo Pool, and Drunks.

Larry David said, “Richard and I were born three days apart in the same hospital and for most of my life he’s been like a brother to me. He had that rare combination of being the funniest person and also the sweetest. But today he made me sob and for that I’ll never forgive him.”

HBO added in a statement, “We are heartbroken to learn that Richard Lewis has passed away. His comedic brilliance, wit and talent were unmatched. Richard will always be a cherished member of the HBO and Curb Your Enthusiasm families, our heartfelt condolences go out to his family, friends and all the fans who could count on Richard to brighten their days with laughter.”

Jamie Lee Curtis said,  “He also is the reason I am sober. He helped me. I am forever grateful for him for that act of grace alone. He found love with Joyce and that, of course, besides his sobriety, is what mattered most to him. I’m weeping as I write this. Strange way of saying thank you to a sweet and funny man. Rest in laughter, Richard.”

Source: Variety, Guardian

7 Responses

  1. Sad to hear, was so good to see him back on curb your enthusiasm this last week, he did look frail and was the reason he was sitting most of the time, so glad he got to appear with his friends in every season.
    RIP, will be thinking of him while watching the rest of this season episodes.

  2. He looked so bad that even in a scene from series 11 they ended on a joke where Larry asked Lewis “when are going to just die?” Nothing off limits for a laugh from these two great friends. So sad.

  3. Such a great role he played in CYE, particularly in the earlier seasons. Saw him in episode 3 of the current final season and he looked quite unwell notwithstanding his Parkinson’s diagnosis. A huge loss to the comedy world.

    1. Enjoyed his presence on Curb over the years, though his health was noticeably deteriorating for quite some time during those later seasons, which was sad to see. RIP.

  4. That is sad. I first saw him with Jamie Lee in ‘Anything But Love’ but of course it was the fictionalized version of himself in Curb that has stayed with me. His repartee with Larry was wonderful. He will be missed.

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