Richard Lewis, beloved stand-up comic and “Curb Your Enthusiasm” star, dead at 76


Richard Lewis, one of the most prominent and acclaimed stand-up comedians of his generation, has died at 76.

Lewis, also known for his roles in Curb Your Enthusiasm and Robin Hood: Men in Tights, retired from stand-up last after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.

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According to Deadline, his death was confirmed by publicist Jeff Abraham: “His wife, Joyce Lapinsky, thanks everyone for all the love, friendship and support and asks for privacy at this time,” Abraham said in a statement.

Lewis rose to prominence as a stand-up comedian in the 1970s and 80s. He was known for his neurotic and self-deprecating humor, and for his frank discussions about his struggles with alcohol and drug addiction.

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Lewis was also a frequent guest on late-night shows like The Tonight Show with Johnny CarsonLate Night with David Letterman and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

He was beloved by fans and fellow comedians, many of whom have cited him as an influence. He has been listed as one of the best and most influential comedians in lists by GQ and Comedy Central.

LAS VEGAS – JULY 27: Comedian/actor Richard Lewis hosts the Video Software Dealers Association’s award show at the organization’s annual home video convention at the Bellagio July 27, 2005 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

On TV, Lewis was known for his Golden Globe-nominated performance in the sitcom Anything but Love opposite Jamie Lee Curtis, and for playing a fictionalized version of himself on Curb Your Enthusiasm.

While Lewis recently admitted he disliked series star/creator Larry David at first, saying he found him “cocky” and “arrogant,” the two enjoyed a long friendship both on and off the screen: Lewis appeared in many episodes throughout the show’s long run as the fictionalized Larry’s longtime friend, becoming one of his most memorable roles.

He also memorably played Prince John in Mel Brooks’ Robin Hood: Men in Tights.

Parkinson’s diagnosis

Last April, Lewis announced that he had retired from stand-up after a decades-long career “Three and a half years ago, I was in the middle of a tour, and then I finally ended it with a show,” Lewis said. “I said, you know, I’m at the top of my game. After 50 years, almost, I’m going to just call it quits. And I felt great about that.”

He revealed that shortly after retiring, “s**t hit the fan” and he suffered a number of health issues, including being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.

“Two years ago, I started walking a little stiffly,” he said. “I was shuffling my feet, and I went to a neurologist, and they gave me a brain scan, and I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. And that was about two years ago.”

Lewis said that despite the diagnosis and retirement from stand-up, he would focus on writing and acting. He returned for the 12th and final season of Curb Your Enthusiasm, which is currently airing on HBO.

Rest in peace to the great comedian Richard Lewis — we’ll always remember his hilarious stand up and performance in Curb Your Enthusiasm.

Please share this story in memory of Richard Lewis ❤

The post Richard Lewis, beloved stand-up comic and “Curb Your Enthusiasm” star, dead at 76 appeared first on Happy Santa.


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