Emmy-winning actor and stand-up comedian Louie Anderson has died due to complications from cancer at age 68.
He was being treated for blood cancer in a Las Vegas hospital after being diagnosed with a type of non-Hodgkins lymphoma, his publicist Glenn Schwartz told The Hollywood Reporter.
Anderson was selected as one of the 100 Greatest Stand-Ups of All Time by Comedy Central in 2004. He also co-created “Life With Louie,” a Saturday morning animated series that aired from 1994 to 1998 and hosted a revival of the game show “Family Feud” from 1999 to 2002.
Anderson’s portrayal of Christine Baskets on the FX series “Baskets” won him a Primetime Emmy in 2016, an award he was nominated for three times.
“Louie Anderson, your generosity of spirit will cover the world from above,” actor Henry Winkler wrote on Twitter. “We are so lucky you were on earth for a moment, spreading your humor all over like bars of living gold.”
Comedian Gilbert Gottfried posted a photo of himself with Anderson and Bob Saget, who died earlier this month, writing, “This photo is very sad now. RIP Bob Saget and RIP Louie Anderson. Both good friends that will be missed.”
Comedian Jeff Ross, who was also a close friend of Saget’s, joked about Anderson dying a day after singer-actor Meat Loaf died. “When Meatloaf died, Louie Anderson was like, `What’s the point of living?’ Ross joked on Twitter. “I loved them both.”
He was born Louie Perry Anderson on March 24, 1953, in St. Paul, Minnesota and was the second-youngest of 11 children. He had five brothers and five sisters and grew up in the Roosevelt Homes housing project.
Much of his humor stemmed from his jokes about his dysfunctional family and upbringing.
Anderson made his film debut as a taxi driver in “Clock & Dagger” in 1984 and had roles in “Quicksilver,” “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” and “Ratboy.” He was in “The Wrong Guys” with Richard Lewis and Richard Belzer in 1988 and had a memorable cameo in “Coming To America” starring Eddie Murphy.