Gelos, the ancient Greek diety of laughter has suddenly gone quiet as news breaks of the death of one of the English-speaking world’s great comedians: Norm Macdonald.
Canadian-born Norm Macdonald passed away overnight at age 61 after a long and private battle with cancer according to his management Brillstein Entertainment Partners.
Macdonald’s producing partner and friend Lori Jo Hoekstra said he was determined to keep his health issues away from the public eye.
“He was most proud of his comedy,” Hoekstra told Deadline.
“He never wanted the diagnosis to affect the way the audience or any of his loved ones saw him. Norm was a pure comic.”
Norman Gene Macdonald (October 17, 1959 – September 14, 2021 was a Canadian stand-up comedian, writer, and actor known for his deadpan style.
Early in his career, he wrote for the sitcom Roseanne and made guest appearances on shows such as The Drew Carey Show and NewsRadio. Macdonald was then a cast member on Saturday Night Live (SNL) for five years, including anchoring the Weekend Update segment for three seasons. After leaving SNL, he starred in the 1998 film Dirty Work and in his own sitcom, The Norm Show, from 1999 to 2001.
In 2013, Macdonald started a video podcast, Norm Macdonald Live, on which he interviewed comedians and other celebrities. In 2018, he released Norm Macdonald Has a Show, a Netflix talk show with a similar premise to his podcast. Throughout his career, Macdonald appeared in numerous movies and was a guest on talk shows such as Conan, Late Night with David Letterman, and The Howard Stern Show. He also worked as a voice actor, notably on the animated show Mike Tyson Mysteries.
Paste magazine ranked him number 31 on their 50 Best Stand-up Comics of All Time.