Hollywood Mourns Louie Anderson: ‘One of Comedy’s Greatest Gifts’

·7 min read

After news broke that “Baskets” star Louie Anderson died Friday morning, celebrities took to social media to mourn the loss of the Emmy-winning comedian. Anderson, who started the 1990s cartoon series “Life With Louie” and appeared in “Coming to America” and “Search Party,” was also a Las Vegas comedy staple, with his stand-up show “Louie: Larger Than Life” running from 2003 to 2012.

Michael McKean took to Twitter to honor Anderson and his work in “Baskets” alongside Zach Galifianakis. “Baskets was such a phenomenal “second act” for Louie Anderson,” McKean wrote. “I wish he’d gotten a third. RIP.”

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In a statement to Variety, Galifianakis said: “Louie Anderson was pure. His essence triggered child-like euphoria when he was around. He was caring and tender. And you learn that his tenderness was born out of pain. Makes you love him even more. I will miss him tremendously.”

Adam Sandler wrote on Twitter, “Damn. Such a funny great guy. Made us all laugh so much. Loved him. Condolences to his whole family.”

Posting a photo of Anderson, Bob Saget and himself, Gilbert Gottfried wrote on Twitter, “This photo is very sad now. RIP Bob Saget and RIP Louie Anderson. Both good friends that will be missed.”

Howie Mandel added, “What is going on? We just lost another beautiful funny friend . Omg there’s got to be more funny up there than down here. Norm Bob and now @LouieAnderson. No words but love and shock.”

Viola Davis also took to social media to honor Anderson. “RIP Louie Anderson! You were as gracious and kind as you were funny,” Davis wrote. “Rest well!! Keep ’em laughing in Heaven.”

Comedy legend George Wallace shared on Twitter, “Heaven has a hell of an open mic night goin’ right about now. Everybody gets the light. You’ll be missed. Louie. What an awesome friend. One in a million.”

Henry Winkler also paid tribute to Anderson on Twitter, writing, “Your generosity of spirit will cover the world from above… We are so lucky you were on earth for a moment, spreading your humor all over like bars of living gold… Good Bye.”

Jeff Ross quipped, “When Meatloaf died Louie Anderson was like, ‘What’s the point of living?’ I loved them both.”

Comedian Doug Benson wrote on Twitter, “Louie is one of the first comedians I ever saw in person. He is not only hilarious, but a sweet man and a cheerleader for comedians and comedy. His work in ‘Baskets’ alone gives him legendary status.”

Stand-up comedian Kathleen Madigan shared a photo of her and Louie on Twitter, writing, “Grateful I got to say goodbye. Loved him like a brother. My midwest king.”

Charles Rogers, co-creator and co-showrunner of “Search Party,” shared an old video of Anderson on his Instagram story, writing, “Louie was a magical genius and a deeply loving person. He had cracked a side of life that few people ever do. I’ll be forever grateful for him.”

The National Comedy Center honored Anderson with a statement sent to Variety. “Few comedians have found success in so many of comedy’s arenas — from stand-up, sitcoms and animation to game shows, reality shows and feature film,” said Journey Gunderson, the executive director of the center. “Louie Anderson made his mark on the art form in wide-ranging ways and gifted us all with comedy that deftly ranged from hilarious to poignant. Anderson will be revered for years to come as someone who regularly and publicly challenged ideas about what comedy is, and for the empathy and grace he showed his peers and audiences alike.”

In a statement from FX, the network wrote, “We are so deeply saddened by the passing of our dear friend, Louie Anderson. For four wonderful seasons, Louie graced us and fans of ‘Baskets’ with a bravura performance as Christine Baskets, for which he deservedly was recognized by his peers with the Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series. It was a risky role for him and he embraced it with a fearlessness and joy that demonstrated his brilliance as an artist. He truly cared about his craft and was a true professional in every sense. Our hearts go out to his loved ones and his ‘Baskets’ family — Zach Galifianakis, Jonathan Krisel and Martha Kelly and all the cast and crew. He will be missed by us all but never forgotten and always bring a smile to our faces.”

Actor Michael Abbott Jr. also celebrated Anderson’s work on “Baskets,” writing, “Louie Anderson’s role as Christine on @BasketsFX will go down as one of tv comedies greatest gifts.”

Comedian and writer Travon Free also paid tribute on Twitter, writing, “Louie Anderson was a very dear friend and one of the people who very early in my career believed in me and would put me and a couple of other comics he loved up in a hotel in Vegas and pay us to open for him when we needed money. What a huge loss. Rest in peace my friend.”

Actor and comedian D.L. Hughley paid tribute to Anderson on Twitter, writing, “No words! RIP Louie!! One of my all time favorites.”

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