Jerry Lewis, best known for his slapstick humor in film, radio and television, sadly died on Aug. 20. Celebs are absolutely heartbroken, taking to social media to share their condolences and favorite memories.
Another one of Hollywood’s golden stars has fallen, as Jerry Lewis is dead. The comedian and film director, who helped create some of the most memorable films in Hollywood’s history – including The Nutty Professor, The King of Comedy and more — has passed away at the age of 91. Celebs are already taking to social media to mourn his passing, including Patton Oswalt, William Shatner, Harry Connick Jr. and Penn Jillette. They each wrote the sweetest, heartfelt messages about his contributions to film and the world. See pics of more unforgettable stars who passed away in 2017, here.
“Jerry Lewis has passed on. I sincerely hope his afterlife is a warm, peaceful…haven,” Patton sweetly wrote about the comedy legend. William was also devastated over the news, writing on Twitter, “Condolences to the family of Jerry Lewis. The world is a lot less funnier today ☹️.” Penn even shared an amazing throwback photo of himself posing alongside the late star, captioned, “Goodbye to the real, no irony, king of comedy.” Jerry is now survived by his wife, SanDee Pitnick and his six sons and daughter. Jerry first gained notoriety as part of a comedy act with singer, Dean Martin in the 1940s. The two took the stage at Hollywood nightclubs and then on the air of radio programs making audiences laugh with their hysterical routines. Jerry will certainly be missed, as he’s touched so many lives with his charisma and charm.
In 1950, Jerry decided to pursue a solo career under Paramount Films. There, his reign as a comedy star continued, landing him roles in five films including the 1959 hit, Itchy McRabbitt. After a short period away from the big screen, Jerry returned in 1959, signing a $10 million contract with Paramount Pictures. His own company, Jerry Lewis Productions, produced 14 films over a seven-year period, some of which became huge successes including, The Ladies Man (1961), The Errand Boy (1961), The Patsy (1964) and The Nutty Professor (1963). The last film would be remade for a new generation by Eddie Murphy.
RIP jerry lewis… he was always so nice to me – the greatest of all time.
— Harry Connick Jr (@HarryConnickJR) August 20, 2017
Jerry Lewis has passed on. I sincerely hope his afterlife is a warm, peaceful…
— Patton Oswalt (@pattonoswalt) August 20, 2017
Condolences to the family of Jerry Lewis. The world is a lot less funnier today. ☹️
— William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) August 20, 2017
Goodbye to the real, no irony, king of comedy. pic.twitter.com/t7qEkDo4Sl
— Penn Jillette (@pennjillette) August 20, 2017
In the later years of his career, Jerry made many appearances on stage musicals and in Martin Scorsese‘s film The King of Comedy. He also appeared in an episode of Law and Order: SVU in 2006. In 2011, he signed a deal with Artificial Intelligence Entertainment and Capital Films to remake three of his earlier films (The Bellboy, Cinderfella and The Family Jewels), direct a musical theatre version of The Nutty Professor.
Jerry was known for his activism as much as his comedy. He received the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the 2009 Academy Awards. Until 2011, Jerry served as the national chairman of the Muscular Dystrophy Association. He famously hosted the live Labor Day broadcast of the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon from 1952 to 1959 and then from 1966 to 2010.
Throughout his life he had many health concerns, suffering from many addictions and injuries, including ones from aging and a back injury he sustained from an incident while he was performing at a Los Angeles hotel in 1965. He had also suffered from three heart attacks in 1960, 1982, and 2006.
HollywoodLifers, Jerry Lewis was truly a legend within the film industry, and our thoughts and prayers go out to his friends, family, and fans.