Comedian Norm Macdonald, former cast member of the American show Saturday Night Live and reader of his newsletter Weekend Update in the 1990s, passed away.
The 61-year-old comedian passed away on Tuesday after a nine-year battle with cancer which he did not speak about in public. That’s what Brillstein Entertainment Partners, a talent management company headquartered in Los Angeles, said.
He never reached the same television heights after being fired from “SNL” in 1998, but he was a tireless stage comedian and a popular guest on American late-night dates.
His passing quickly sparked an avalanche of praise from his former colleagues.
“He had a style all his own,” described comedian Sarah Silverman, who collaborated with him on “Saturday Night Live” in the 1990s. “There’s no one like him on this planet. Do yourself a favor and go see his sketches. “
Son of two teachers, Norm Macdonald was born and raised in Quebec. He spent a few years performing as a comedian, before joining Saturday Night Live in 1993. He briefly acted as a screenwriter for the series “Roseanne” before being drafted by the popular weekly show.
In the afternoon, Tuesday, the Prime Minister Justin trudeau He too offered his condolences to the family and loved ones of Norm Macdonald, as have several politicians.
“The world was a lot funnier thanks to Norm Macdonald. We have lost a brilliant comedian and a great Canadian, ”Trudeau wrote in a tweet.
Norm Macdonald rose to fame for his esoteric imitations, including those of Burt Reynolds, Bob Dole, Larry King, and David Letterman.
His tongue-in-cheek style and screenwriting skills made him the host of Weekend Update in the 1990s, a period marked by the news surrounding OJ Simpson and Bill Clinton.
OJ Simpson was one of his favorite targets. On the show following the acquittal of the former football star, Mr. Macdonald opened his review of the news by saying, “Well, it’s finally official. Murder is legal in the state of California. “
Speaking on behalf of the show, “Saturday Night Live” executive producer Lorne Michaels called Mr. Macdonald “one of the most successful humorous voices of his generation, or of any generation.”
“There are so many things that we will miss about Norm: his unwavering integrity, his generosity and, not to mention, his ability to surprise us,” he said. “But above all, he was just funny. No one was as funny as Norm. “
Mr. Macdonald was fired in the middle of the 1998 season by NBC Entertainment director Don Ohlmeyer, a friend of OJ Simpson. He wouldn’t have liked the “SNL” star to make Mr. Simpson the almost constant target of his jokes.
After leaving the NBC show in 1998, he created the series “The Norm Show” for the ABC channel. He was featured there playing the role of a former NHL player fired and forced to become a social worker for illegal betting and tax evasion.