It was an emotional night for the late-night TV hosts, Conan O’Brien and Seth Meyers. Both comedians took a great deal of time out to pay tribute to the wonderful Garry Shandling. Click to watch their separate stories of remembrance on the actor.
Garry Shandling, 66, sure did leave his mark on Hollywood. The hilarious comedian passed away suddenly on March 24, leaving many celebrities in shock. Both Conan O’Brien and Seth Meyers were amongst them and took time out on their respective late-night TV shows to share personal stories about the late actor.
Late-night TV hosts, Conan and Seth, did Garry justice during their individual programs.
After a lengthy intro to his tribute, Conan told the audience on March 24, “He [Garry] was obviously hysterically funny, pretty much all the time, but he was also extremely sensitive, he was complicated, and he had a ton of empathy for other people. I want to make that point. That is something in this business, in comedy, that is very rare. He really did care about other people.” He went on to say:
During a particularly difficult time in my life, as fate would have it, Garry just magically appeared—this is true—and he helped me a lot, and that is what I’ve been thinking about these last couple of hours. I think it’s seven years ago now when my Tonight Show ended in this crazy, effed-up, spectacular fashion. I woke up the next morning and I had no job, and I had no idea what I was going to do, and I was just shell-shocked. I was a complete zombie and my wife suddenly had this idea. She said, ‘You should go to Hawaii for a week. You should get some sun, for like the first time in 40 years.’ I had never seen the sun, and not since. I just thought, ‘Maybe that’s a good idea.’ So my wife, my two kids and I, we got on a plane and we flew to Hawaii. We checked into our hotel room and my wife took our two kids to the beach and thought, ‘Let’s leave daddy alone.’ I just sat alone in this hotel room for, I think, half an hour or 40 minutes, just silent, not knowing what to do. I could hear the ocean. I’m just sitting there, and suddenly the phone rang. And I heard a voice—it’s an unmistakable voice—that said, ‘Conan, it’s Garry. I’m staying three doors down. We’re on an island. There’s no avoiding me.’
Sure enough, he had checked in the day before me and he knew or had heard from somebody, ‘Hey, Conan’s here.’ He called me up. This is a week I was supposed to spend with my wife and kids; I spent the entire week with Garry Shandling. And I’ll tell you something: I was at a real low-point. He counseled me, he cheered me up, he told me jokes, he talked to me about philosophy, he talked to me about how there are bigger things in the world and how I was going to be fine, he’d talk about Eckhart Tolle, he’d talk about all this amazing stuff. We had an incredible one afternoon, the last afternoon that we spent together on that island. We took this really long walk. We climbed over lava formations. We went through a cave. We went to this far part of the island and we saw a little stretch of sand, and we laid down on it, and the sun started to go down. We’re both watching the sun go down, and I turned to Garry and I said, ‘Garry, this is the most romantic moment of my life and it’s with you. I’ve never had a moment like this with my wife, and I’m having it now with you.’ He was an incredibly generous person.
Conan ended the segment with, “I love you, Garry. I miss you.”
On Late Night, Seth reminisced about Garry’s groundbreaking impact on the comedy world.
“Garry Shandling was a legendary comedian,” Seth told the audience. “I never had the chance to get to know him, but I’ve heard he was a great guy. I just want to say a few things about him. He did The Larry Sanders Show, which was completely groundbreaking and changed the way I thought about TV and I think a lot of people thought about TV. And it was a show about a character—a fictional character—who hosted a talk show, a talk show like this. Growing up, watching [Johnny] Carson, [David]Letterman and Conan, those are all people who made me want to host a talk show. Watching The Larry Sanders Show made me think, ‘Oh, I don’t want to host a talk show. I think that looks like a very scary place to work.'”
HollywoodLifers — what do you think about the two tributes? Heartfelt? Tell us below!