Norm Macdonald, comedian and former “Saturday Night Live” star, has died of cancer, his manager confirmed to CBS News on Tuesday. He was 61 years old.
Macdonald began his television career as a writer on “Rosanne” and the “Dennis Miller Show” in 1992. The following year he became an actor on “Saturday Night Live,” a role that would define his career. . He is best known for his work as the presenter for the Weekend Update series skit, a position he held for four years before passing the torch to comedian Colin Quinn.
Macdonald went on to appear in numerous movies and TV shows, including “The Norm Show”, “Billy Madison” and a notable appearance in “The Comedy Central Roast of Bob Saget”.
In addition to his stand-up comedy and live action movies and movies, Macdonald was also a successful voice actor, voicing the dog Lucky in several “Dr. Doolittle” movies and Death in several episodes of “Family Guy”. Some of his more recent roles include Yaphit, a gelatinous engineer in Fox’s “The Orville” and as an alcoholic pigeon in the Comedy Central animated series “Mike Tyson Mysteries”.
“Norm defined intelligent and real American humor. It was a true original,” Jeff Danis, president of DPN Talent, said in a statement. “He will be sorely missed.”
Macdonald fans and friends have taken to social media to express their sadness over the loss of the comedian.
“I am absolutely devastated by Norm Macdonald”, Conan O’Brien noted Tuesday. “Norm had the most unique comedic voice I have ever encountered and he was so funny and uncompromising. I will never laugh so loudly again. I am so sad for all of us today.”
Seth Macfarlane, who created and starred in “Family Guy” and “The Orville,” called the late actor “hilarious” and “generous” in a moving Twitter post.
“For so many people in comedy, myself included, there was no one funnier than Norm MacDonald”, Macfarlane wrote. “You always wished he’d hang around after the job was done, just so you could hear his stories and laugh. So hilarious and so generous with his personality. I’ll miss him.”
Actor Seth Rogen has revealed that he modeled many of his early appearances on Macdonald’s voice and manners.
“I would stay awake especially to watch it on talk shows,” Rogen said. “He was the funniest guest ever. We lost a comedy giant today. One of the greatest of all time.”
This story is developing. Check back for updates.