Carl Reiner, a comedy legend and filmmaker, has passed away at the age of 98. The American comic, who is famous for regularly working alongside fellow comedian Mel Brooks, died in his home in the company of his family, according to TMZ.
His son, filmmaker Rob Reiner, posted on Twitter that Carl Reiner was his “guiding light”.
Last night my dad passed away. As I write this my heart is hurting. He was my guiding light.
— Rob Reiner (@robreiner) June 30, 2020
Carl Reiner had a lengthy career in comedy and film, both acting in roles and directing. His work with comedic partner Mel Brooks lasted for years, beginning in 1960 with The Steve Allen Show and continuing with The 2000 Year Old Man before breaking out into 5 successful comedy albums. The pair would remain good friends for the rest of their lives.
Reiner would go on to create The Dick Van Dyke Show, which helped the titular actor’s career and brought him into the spotlight. Initially tooled as a semi-autobiographical comedy series based on Reiner’s personal and professional life, he would then retool the series for Van Dyke. Its success ensured a five-year-long run.
Carl Reiner would go on to direct several films including Where’s Poppa? (1970), Oh, God! (1977), and The Jerk (1979). He also played the role of Saul Bloom for the first three films of the Ocean’s Eleven film reboot series from the 2000s.
Describing his take on writing comedy, Reiner said in his 2004 memoir:
You have to imagine yourself as not somebody very special, but somebody very ordinary. If you imagine yourself as somebody really normal and if it makes you laugh, it’s going to make everybody laugh. If you think of yourself as something very special, you’ll end up a pedant and a bore. If you start thinking about what’s funny, you won’t be funny, actually. It’s like walking. How do you walk? If you start thinking about it, you’ll trip.”
What fond memories do you have of watching Carl Reiner’s works? Share your memories in the comments below!