Comedy in History

Comedy: Cartoons - Humorists - Ventriloquists

Related Topics: Comic Artists

Events in Film & TV

  • 1598-04-30 1st theater performance in America (Spanish comedy-Rio Grande)

Theater Premiere

1611-11-01 Shakespeare's romantic comedy play "Tempest" is first presented

  • 1695-04-30 William Congreve's Restoration comedy "Love for Love" premieres in London

Theater Premiere

1722-11-07 Richard Steele's sentimental comedy play "The Conscious Lovers" premieres in London

  • 1771-11-04 Carlo Goldoni's prose comedy "Le Bourru Bienfaisant" premieres in Paris
  • 1787-04-16 1st American comedy, "The Contrast," makes its debut in NYC
  • 1852-11-20 Charles Reade and Tom Taylor's historical comedy play "Masks & Faces" premieres in London
  • 1886-09-25 Comedy opera "Dorothy" first produced in London

Theater Premiere

1894-03-30 George Bernard Shaw's comedy play "Candida" premieres at Theatre Royal, South Shields, England

Film Release

1914-12-21 1st feature-length silent film comedy "Tillie's Punctured Romance" released starring Marie Dressler, Mabel Normand and Charlie Chaplin

Music History

1923-02-01 Noël Coward's stage comedy "The Young Idea" premieres at the Savoy Theatre, London; runs for 60 performances

  • 1930-09-24 G Kaufman & M Hart's comedy "Once in a Lifetime" premieres in NY

Film Premiere

1931-01-30 "City Lights", American silent romantic comedy film directed by Charlie Chaplin, starring himself and Virginia Cherrill, premieres at Los Angeles Theater

Theater Premiere

1933-10-02 Eugene O'Neill's comedy play "Ah, Wilderness!" premieres in NYC

Theater Premiere

1934-09-25 John Van Druten's comedy play "The Distaff Side" premieres in NYC

  • 1935-09-07 Romantic comedy film "Page Miss Glory" starring Marion Davies premieres in the USA
  • 1936-07-07 RCA shows 1st real TV program (dancing, film on locomotives, Bonwit Teller fashion show and monologue from Tobacco Road & comedy)

Music History

1937-05-19 John Murray and Allen Boretz's stage comedy "Room Service", starring Sam Levene, Eddie Albert, and Phillip Loeb, opens at the Cort Theatre, NYC; runs for 500 performances

  • 1938-07-16 John Murray and Allen Boretz's stage comedy "Room Service", starring Sam Levene, Eddie Albert, and Phillip Loeb, closes at the Cort Theatre, NYC, after 500 performances
  • 1938-09-21 RKO film comedy "Room Service", starring the Marx Brothers, based on Allen Boretz and John Murray's play, premieres in NYC
  • 1939-04-17 SN Behrman's "No Time for Comedy" premieres in NYC

Music History

1939-10-16 George Kaufman and Moss Hart's comedy "The Man Who Came to Dinner" opens at the Music Box Theatre, NYC; runs for 739 performances

Film Premiere

1939-11-09 Romantic comedy film "Ninotchka" directed by Ernst Lubitsch and starring Greta Garbo premieres

  • 1940-01-09 James Thurber and Elliott Nugent's stage comedy "The Male Animal" premieres at the Cort Theater. NYC; runs for 243 performances

Radio History

1942-10-08 Comedy duo Abbott and Costello launch their weekly radio show

Music History

1946-07-25 Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis stage their first show as a comedy team at 500 Club in Atlantic City, New Jersey

  • 1947-11-01 Gian Carlo Menotti's musical drama/comedy double bill "The Medium" and " The Telephone" closes at The Ethel Barrymore Theatre, NYC after 211 performances
  • 1949-05-29 Candid Camera, TV comedy show, moves to NBC
  • 1953-06-11 "Amos 'n Andy" TV Comedy, also radio from '29; last aired on CBS

Music History

1953-10-02 Victor Borge's one-man show "Comedy in Music" opens at John Golden Theatre, NYC; runs for 849 performances, a Guinness world record

Theater Premiere

1954-10-21 Dorothy Parker and Arnaud d'Usseau's black comedy play "Ladies of the Corridor" premieres

Radio Premiere

1954-11-02 BBC radio comedy "Hancock's Half Hour" debuts starring Tony Hancock and Sid James, written by Ray Galton and Alan Simpson

  • 1955-06-04 "Mickey Rooney Show" TV comedy last airs on NBC
  • 1955-06-12 TV comedy "Mister Peepers" starring Wally Cox airs for last time on NBC
  • 1955-10-20 Ira Levin's stage comedy "No Time for Sergeants", based on Mac Hymans's novel, starring Andy Griffith, and featuring Don Knotts, opens at Alvin Theatre, NYC; runs for 796 performances

Film Release

1955-12-08 Black Ealing comedy "The Ladykillers", directed by Alexander Mackendrick and starring Alec Guinness is released in the UK

  • 1956-01-21 Victor Borge's one-man show "Comedy in Music" closes at John Golden Theatre, NYC; runs for 849 performances, a Guinness world record

Film Premiere

1956-12-01 Musical comedy film "The Girl Can't Help It" starring Jayne Mansfield with cameos by rock 'n' roll stars Little Richard, Eddie Cochran, and Gene Vincent premieres

  • 1957-01-04 "Blondie" situation comedy premieres on NBC TV (later on CBS)
  • 1958-04-03 Abe Burrows, Richard and Marian Bissell's comedy "Say, Darling" opens at ANTA Theater, NYC; runs for 332 performances

Music History

1959-01-24 Dmitri Shostakovich's comedy "Cheryomushk" premieres in Moscow

  • 1960-02-04 Lionel Bart's musical comedy "Fings Ain't Wot They Used T'be" opens at Garrick Theatre, London; runs for 886 pefromances
  • 1962-09-26 TV comedy series "Beverly Hillbillies" premieres on CBS
  • 1964-08-11 "A Hard Days Night" a musical comedy film featuring the Beatles released in the US
  • 1964-11-09 "Comedy in Music-Opus 2" opens at John Golden NYC for 192 performances
  • 1965-04-24 "Comedy in Music-Opus 2" closes at John Golden NYC after 192 performances
  • 1965-08-11 "Help!" a musical comedy film featuring the Beatles released in the US

Television Premiere

1965-09-18 Mel Brooks and Buck Henry's spy spoof sitcom "Get Smart" starring Don Adams, Barbara Feldon, and Edward Platt, debuts on NBC-TV

  • 1967-02-05 "Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour" premieres on CBS (later ABC, NBC)

Film Premiere

1967-04-19 "Casino Royale" James Bond comedy film starring David Niven and Peter Sellers premieres. Based on the Ian Fleming novel.

Television Premiere

1967-06-14 "The Steve Allen Comedy Hour" premieres on CBS-TV

Film Premiere

1967-12-22 "The Graduate", American comedy-drama film directed by Mike Nichols, starring Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft, premieres (Best Director, 1968)

Film & TV History

1969-05-11 British comedy troupe Monty Python forms, made up of Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin

  • 1969-06-08 "Smothers Brothers comedy Hour" last airs on CBS-TV

Film Premiere

1969-12-12 Comedy film "The Magic Christian", starring Peter Sellers and Ringo Starr premieres in London, England

Film Premiere

1970-01-25 Dark comedy film "M*A*S*H", directed by Robert Altman, starring Donald Sutherland and Elliott Gould, and based on novel by Richard Hooker, premieres (Palme d'Or 1970)

  • 1970-11-09 Comedy troupe "The Goodies" make their television debut on the BBC

Television Debut

1971-08-01 "The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour" debuts on CBS-TV, with comic actor and singer Jimmy Durante as guest

Music Premiere

1972-03-30 Revival of Stephen Sondheim's musical-comedy "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum", starring Phil Silvers, opens at Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, NYC; runs for 156 performances and wins 2 Tony Awards

  • 1972-08-12 Revival of Stephen Sondheim's musical-comedy "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum", starring Phil Silvers, closes at Lunt-Fontanne Theater, NYC, after 156 performances

Television Debut

1972-09-17 TV comedy series "M*A*S*H", adapted from the movie, starring Alan Alda, Loretta Swit, Wayne Rogers, and McLean Stevenson debuts on CBS in the US; runs for 11 years garnering 14 Emmy and 1 Peabody Award

  • 1973-06-30 "Burns & Schreiber Comedy Hour" TV Variety; debut on ABC

Television Premiere

1974-04-21 "Julie and Dick In Covent Garden", music and comedy special starring Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke, with Carl Reiner, premieres on ABC-TV

  • 1975-01-24 "Hot l Baltimore" situation comedy premieres on ABC TV
  • 1975-01-29 First American Annual Comedy Awards, hosted by Alan King

Film & TV History

1975-03-13 Bernard Slade's stage comedy "Same Time, Next Year", starring Ellen Burstyn and Charles Grodin, opens at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre, NYC; later transfers to the Ambassador Theatre, and runs for a total of 1,453 performances

  • 1977-03-15 TV comedy "Three's Company" starring John Ritter, Suzanne Somers and Joyce DeWitt premieres on ABC
  • 1977-10-03 Victor Borge's "Comedy with Music" opens at Imperial Theater, NYC; runs for 66 performances
  • 1977-11-27 Victor Borge's "Comedy with Music" closes at Imperial Theater, NYC, after 66 performances
  • 1978-09-03 Bernard Slade's stage comedy "Same Time, Next Year", closes at the Ambassador Theatre, NYC,, after 1,453 performances and a Tony Award

Television Premiere

1978-09-12 Situation comedy "Taxi" premieres on ABC television starring Judd Hirsch, Jeff Conaway, Danny DeVito, Tony Danza, Marilu Henner, and Andy Kaufman

  • 1979-02-04 "Co-Ed Fever," TV Comedy, debut & cancelled that outing on CBS

Film & TV History

1979-10-16 Comedy sketch show "Not the Nine O'Clock News" debuts starring Rowan Atkinson, Chris Langham, Pamela Stephenson and Mel Smith on BBC 2

Film & TV History

1979-11-08 Bernard Slade's stage comedy "Romantic Comedy", starring Mia Farrow and Anthony Perkins, opens at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, NYC; runs for 396 performances

  • 1980-02-25 British political comedy "Yes Minister" written by Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn, starring Paul Eddington, Nigel Hawthorne and Derek Fowlds premieres on BBC Two

Film Premiere

1980-06-16 Musical comedy film "The Blues Brothers", starring Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi, and directed by John Landis, premieres in Chicago, Illinois

  • 1980-06-20 Musical comedy film "The Blues Brothers", starring Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi, and featuring appearances by Aretha Franklin; Cab Calloway; and Ray Charles opens in 594 theaters
  • 1980-07-02 Comedy film "Airplane!" written and directed by David Zucker, Jim Abrahams, and Jerry Zucker and starring Robert Hays and Julie Hagerty premieres

Film Release

1980-10-10 Comedy film "Private Benjamin" is released starring Goldie Hawn

  • 1980-10-18 Bernard Slade's stage comedy "Romantic Comedy", closes at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, NYC, after for 396 performances
  • 1981-06-23 NYC Mayor Koch turns down a $7,500 offer to perform comedy

Film Premiere

1981-06-26 "Stripes", American military comedy film, directed and produced by Ivan Reitman, starring Bill Murray, Harold Ramis, and John Candy premieres

  • 1981-09-08 British TV comedy "Only Fools and Horses" created by John Sullivan, starring David Jason, Nicholas Lyndhurst and Lennard Pearce premieres on BBC One
  • 1982-09-29 Situation comedy "Cheers" premieres on NBC-TV, starring Ted Danson and Shelley Long

Film Release

1982-10-08 MGM releases comedy film "My Favorite Year", directed by Richard Benjamin, and starring Peter O'Toole, Mark Linn-Baker, Jessica Harper, and Joseph Bologna

  • 1983-06-08 "Trading Places", American comedy film, is released
  • 1983-06-15 "Black Adder" TV comedy premieres starring Rowan Atkinson and Tony Robinson and written by Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson on BBC1
  • 1984-01-04 "Night Court" starring Harry Anderson, created by comedy writer Reinhold Weege, premieres on NBC TV; runs for 9 seasons
  • 1984-04-05 "Human Comedy" opens at Royale Theater NYC for 13 performances
  • 1984-04-15 "Human Comedy" closes at Royale Theater NYC after 13 performances
  • 1984-06-08 "Ghostbusters", American supernatural comedy film, directed and produced by Ivan Reitman, starring Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, and Ernie Hudson premieres
  • 1984-06-08 "Gremlins", American comedy horror film, is released
  • 1986-09-29 "Designing Women" TV comedy, debuts on CBS

Birthdays in Film & TV

  • 1655-02-07 Jean-Francois Regnard, French comedy writer (Slave in Algeria)
  • 1793-07-20 Aleksander Fredro, Polish poet and comedy writer (Pan Jowiolski), born in Surochów, Poland (d. 1876)
  • 1841-05-14 Sir Squire Bancroft [Butterfield], British actor and manager known for creating 'drawing-room comedy' (Haymarket), born in Rotherhithe, London (d. 1926)
  • 1871-06-14 Theo Frenkel, Dutch actor (Footlights, Hague's Comedy), born in Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands (d. 1956)
  • 1888-06-16 Bobby Clark, American vaudevillian, clown and actor (in comedy act with Paul McCullough), born in Springfield, Ohio (d. 1960)
  • 1890-08-12 Al Goodman, Russian-American orchestra leader (NBC Comedy Hour), born in Nikopol, Russia
  • 1891-12-05 Al Boasberg, American vaudeville, radio and film comedy writer (Jack Benny; Bob Hope; The Marx Brothers), born In Buffalo, New York (d. 1937)
  • 1892-01-31 Eddie Cantor, American comedian (Eddie Cantor Comedy Theater), born in NYC, New York (d. 1964)
  • 1897-04-15 Pedro Regas, Greek stage actor (Only Angels Have Wings, Pat Paulsen's Half a Comedy Hour), born in Goranoi, Greece (d. 1974)
  • 1903-01-04 Joris Diels, Flemish actor and director (It's a Cruel World, Haagsche Comedy), born in Antwerpen, Belgium (d. 1992)
  • 1905-02-04 Hylda Baker, English comedy actress, born in Farnworth, Lancashire, England (d. 1986)
  • 1906-09-30 John I M Stewart [pseudonym Michael Innes], Scottish detective writer (Comedy of Terrors), born in Edinburgh, Scotland (d. 1994)
  • 1910-12-02 Robert Paige, American actor, TV newscaster and political correspondent (Son of Dracula, Pardon My Sarong, Colgate Comedy Hour), born in Indianapolis, Indiana (d. 1987)
  • 1912-04-16 Catherine Scorsese [Cappa], Italian-American actress (The King of Comedy, Goodfellas, Cape Fear), born in NYC, New York (d. 1997)
  • 1912-11-27 Connie Sawyer [Rosie Cohen], American actress known as "The Clown Princess of Comedy" (Pineapple Express, Dumb and Dumber), born in Pueblo, Colorado (d. 2018)
  • 1913-05-08 Sid James [Solomon Joel Cohen], South African-born British character and comedy actor (Hancock's Half Hour, Carry On), born in Johannesburg, Transvaal Province (d. 1976)
  • 1913-08-03 Mel Tolkin, Ukrainian television comedy writer, born in Odessa, Ukraine (d. 2007)
  • 1916-06-24 John Ciardi, American poet, translator (Dante's "Divine Comedy"), and literary commentator, born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 1986)
  • 1920-03-23 Jimmy Edwards, British comedy writer and actor (Take It From Here, Whack-O!), born in Barnes, Surrey, England (d. 1988)
  • 1920-08-05 Selma Diamond, Canadian-American comedy writer (Your Show Of Shows), and actress (Night Court, 1984-85 - "Selma"), born in Montreal, Quebec (d. 1985)
  • 1922-02-07 Josephine "Hattie" Jacques, British comedy actress (Carry on films, Hancock's Half Hour), born in Kent, England (d. 1980)
  • 1922-03-23 Ugo Tognazzi, Italian comedy actor, director and screenwriter (La Cage Aux Folles, The Tragedy of a Ridiculous Man), born in Cremona, Italy (d. 1990)
  • 1923-03-03 Barney Martin, American actor, comedy writer and NYPD detective (Seinfeld), born in Queens, New York (d. 2005)
  • 1923-05-04 Eric Sykes, British radio, stage and television comedy writer, actor and director (Goon Show; Sykes and A...), born in Oldham, Lancahsire, England (d. 2012)
  • 1924-06-08 George Kirby, American comedian (ABC Comedy Hour, Pearl Bailey Show), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1924-10-13 Terry Gibbs [Julius Gubenko], American jazz vibraphonist and band leader (The Dream Band; Steve Allen Comedy Hour), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • 1926-01-17 Richard Michael Hills, comedy script writer
  • 1927-06-30 Pat McCormick, American comedy writer (Red Skeleton; Get Smart; The Tonight Show; Don Rickles Show), and actor (Smokey and the Bandit), born in Lakewood, Ohio (d. 2005)
  • 1928-06-19 Barry Took, English comedy writer (d. 2002)
  • 1929-12-08 Ali Bongo [William Oliver Wallace], British comedy musician and magician (President of The Magic Circle - Shriek of Araby), born in England (d. 2009)
  • 1930-05-02 Bernard Slade [Newbound], Canadian screenwriter (The Flying Nun; The Partridge Family), and playwright (Same Time, Next Year; Romantic Comedy), born in St. Catherines, Ontario (d. 2019)
  • 1930-07-25 Mitzi Shore [Lillian Saidel], American owner of The Comedy Store and founder of The Comedy Channel, born in Menominee, Michigan (d. 2018)
  • 1931-05-19 Eric Davidson, comedy scriptwriter
  • 1931-07-28 Darryl Hickman, American actor (Human Comedy, Tea & Sympathy), born in Hollywood, California
  • 1933-11-15 Barbara Carson, actress (Comedy Tonight, Carter Country), born in Memphis, Tennessee
  • 1934-03-22 Larry Martyn, English comedy actor (d. 1994)
  • 1935-10-23 Jimmy Dale, British-Canadian pianist and orchestra leader (The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour), born in London, England (d. 2017)
  • 1936-02-04 David Brenner, American stand-up comedian and TV talk show host (Nightlife) known as a pioneer of observational comedy, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2014)
  • 1938-08-24 Mason Williams, American musician, songwriter ("Classical Gas", Smother Brothers Comedy Hour), author and photographer, born in Abilene, Texas
  • 1939-03-09 John Howard Davies, British child actor (Oliver Twist), and television comedy producer and director (Monty Python's Flying Circus; Fawlty Towers; The Good Life), born in Paddington, England (d. 2011)
  • 1939-04-05 David Winters, American choreographer and director (Steve Allen Comedy Hour), born in London, England
  • 1940-11-22 Terry Gilliam, comedy author-animator (Monty Python), born in Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • 1942-10-30 Sven-David Sandström, Swedish composer (Jeppe: The Cruel Comedy), born in Motala, Sweden (d. 2019)
  • 1943-05-15 Harve Brosten, American comedy writer (All In The Family, 1975-77), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1944-02-26 Marilyn Michaels, American comedian (ABC Comedy Hour), born in New York City
  • 1944-05-07 Richard O'Sullivan, British comedy actor (Man About the House), born in Chiswick, London

Lorne MichaelsLorne Michaels (78 years old)

1944-11-17 Canadian TV producer, actor and comedy writer (Saturday Night Live), born in Toronto, Ontario

  • 1946-09-27 Robin Nedwell, English comedy actor (d. 1999)
  • 1947-02-25 Anne Beatts, American comedy writer (National Lampoon magazine; Saturday Night Live, 1975-79; Square Pegs), born in Buffalo, New York (d. 2021) [1]
  • 1948-11-10 Mário Viegas, Portuguese actor (The Jew, Divine Comedy, Funeral of Patrao), born in Santarém, Portugal (d. 1996)
  • 1948-11-23 Bruce Vilanch, American comedy writer (head writer for the Oscars), born in New York City
  • 1950-10-30 Louise Duart, American comedienne (Paramount Comedy Theater # 5), born in Quincy, Massachusetts
  • 1951-07-27 Janet Eilber, American actress (Hard to Hold, Romantic Comedy), born in Detroit, Michigan
  • 1953-06-21 Robyn Douglass, American actress (Lonely Guy, Romantic Comedy), born in Sendai, Japan
  • 1955-01-06 Sandra Bernhard, American actress (Follow That Bird, King of Comedy), born in Flint, Michigan
  • 1955-06-06 Sandra Bernhard, American actress and comedian (King of Comedy, Nancy on Roseanne), born in Flint, Michigan
  • 1955-07-09 Fred Norris [Nukis], American comedy writer (Howard Stern Show), singer, guitarist, and actor, born in Willimantic, Connecticut
  • 1963-02-17 Larry the Cable Guy [Daniel Lawrence Whitney], American comedian (Blue Collar Comedy Tour), born in Pawnee City, Nebraska
  • 1963-04-22 Sean Lock, British comedian and actor (British Comedy Award, 2000), born in Chertsey, Surrey
  • 1965-02-25 Carrot Top [Scott Thompson], Fla, comedian (Amer Comedy Award-1994)
  • 1966-10-31 Jon Wurster, American session and touring drummer (Superchunk; The Mountain Goats; Bob Mould), and comedy writer, born in Sellersville, Pennsylvania
  • 1970-11-07 Neil Hannon, Northern Irish musician (The Divine Comedy), born in Derry, Northern Ireland
  • 1974-04-24 Comedy Dave [David Lloyd Vitty], British radio personality, born in Hong Kong
  • 1987-11-30 Ian Hecox, Part of the America Online comedy duo Smosh

Weddings in Film & TV

Lucille Ball

1961-11-19 American television comedy icon Lucille Ball (50) weds American stand-up comic Gary Morton (36) at Marble Collegiate Church, NYC, the second marriage for both

Lorne Michaels

1971-10-05 Television producer Lorne Michaels (26) weds comedy writer Rosie Shuster (21)

  • 2005-10-09 "The O.C." writer and talk show host Regis Philbin's daughter Jennifer Joy Philbin (31) weds NBC comedy series "The Office" writer Michael Schur (32) at St. Ignatius Loyola Church in New York City
  • 2014-05-25 Happy Endings actress Casey Wilson (33) weds comedy writer David Caspe (35) in Ojai, California

Deaths in Film & TV

  • 1556-12-23 Nicholas Udall, English playwright (wrote the 1st comedy in English "Ralph Roister Doister"), dies at about 52
  • 1721-09-20 Thomas Doggett, British comedy actor (Drury Lane Theatre), dies at approximately 51
  • 1876-07-15 Aleksander Fredro, Polish poet and comedy writer (Zemstra), dies at 82
  • 1926-04-19 Sir Squire Bancroft [Butterfield], British actor and manager known for creating 'drawing-room comedy' (Haymarket), dies at 84
  • 1937-06-18 Al Boasberg, American vaudeville, radio and film comedy writer (Jack Benny; Bob Hope; The Marx Brothers), dies of a heart attack at 44
  • 1956-09-20 Theo Frenkel, Dutch actor (Footlights, Hague's Comedy), dies at 85
  • 1960-01-02 Cees [Cornelis J] Laseur, Dutch actor & director (Hague Comedy), dies at 60
  • 1960-02-12 Bobby Clark, American vaudevillian, clown and actor (in comedy act with Paul McCullough), dies at 71
  • 1961-06-02 Peter H "Paul" Huf, actor and director (Dutch Comedy), dies at 70
  • 1964-10-10 Eddie Cantor, American comedian (Eddie Cantor Comedy Theater), dies at 72
  • 1972-01-10 Al Goodman, Russian/US orchestra leader (NBC Comedy Hour), dies at 81
  • 1976-04-26 Sid James [Solomon Joel Cohen], South African-born British character & comedy actor (Hancock's Half Hour, Carry On), dies from a heart attack at 62
  • 1980-10-06 Josephine "Hattie" Jacques, British comedy actress (Carry on films, Hancock's Half Hour), dies of a heart attack at 58
  • 1983-03-28 Ank [Anna M] van der Moer, actress (Verkade, Dutch Comedy), dies at 71
  • 1983-12-31 Frank Link, actor (Burns & Schreiber Comedy Show), dies at 46
  • 1985-05-13 Selma Diamond, Canadian-American comedy writer (Your Show Of Shows), and actress (Night Court, 1984-85 - "Selma"), dies of lung cancer at 64
  • 1986-05-01 Hylda Baker, English comedy actress (b. 1905)
  • 1987-12-21 Robert Paige, American actor, TV newscaster and political correspondent (Son of Dracula, Pardon My Sarong, Colgate Comedy Hour), dies 77
  • 1988-07-07 Jimmy Edwards, British comedy writer and actor (Take It From Here, Whack-O!), dies from pneumonia at 68
  • 1990-10-27 Ugo Tognazzi, Italian comedy actor, director and screenwriter (La Cage Aux Folles, The Tragedy of a Ridiculous Man), dies of a brain hemorrhage at 68
  • 1992-04-04 Sy Kramer, singer/comedy writer dies of cancer at 59
  • 1993-03-02 Paul D Zimmerman, American screenwriter (King of Comedy), dies at 54
  • 1994-08-07 Larry Martyn, comedy actor (b. 1934)
  • 1994-11-08 Michael O'Donoghue, American comedy writer (SNL), dies of a cerebral hemorrhage at 54
  • 1994-11-14 John I M Stewart, detective writer (A Comedy of Terrors), dies at 88
  • 1995-09-30 George Kirby, American comedian (ABC Comedy Hour, Pearl Bailey Show), dies at 71
  • 1996-04-01 Mário Viegas, Portuguese actor (The Jew, Divine Comedy, Funeral of Patrao), dies at 47
  • 1996-05-20 Eric Davidson, comedy scriptwriter, dies at 65
  • 1996-06-06 Richard Michael Hills, comedy script writer, dies at 70
  • 1997-01-06 Catherine Scorsese [Cappa], Italian-American actress (The King of Comedy, Goodfellas, Cape Fear), dies from Alzheimer's disease at 84
  • 2005-03-21 Barney Martin, American actor, comedy writer and NYPD detective (Seinfeld), dies of lung cancer at 82
  • 2005-07-29 Pat McCormick, American comedy writer (Red Skeleton; Get Smart; The Tonight Show; Don Rickles Show), and actor (Smokey and the Bandit), dies at 78
  • 2005-08-18 Gao Xiumin, Chinese comedy actress (b. 1959)
  • 2006-11-10 Diana Coupland, British comedy actress (b. 1932)
  • 2007-11-26 Mel Tolkin, Ukrainian television comedy writer, dies at 94
  • 2008-08-29 Geoffrey Perkins, British comedy producer (b. 1953)
  • 2009-03-08 Ali Bongo [William Oliver Wallace], British comedy musician and magician (President of The Magic Circle - Shriek of Araby), dies at 79
  • 2010-09-29 Greg Giraldo, American comedian (Comedy Central Roast), dies of an overdose at 44
  • 2011-04-23 John Sullivan, British comedy writer, dies at 64
  • 2011-08-23 John Howard Davies, British child actor (Oliver Twist), and television comedy producer and director (Monty Python's Flying Circus; Fawlty Towers; The Good Life), dies of cancer at 72
  • 2012-07-04 Eric Sykes, British radio, stage and television comedy writer, actor and director (Goon Show, Sykes and A...), dies at 89
  • 2014-03-15 David Brenner, American stand-up comedian and TV talk show host (Nightlife) known as a pioneer of observational comedy, dies from cancer at 78
  • 2017-05-20 Jimmy Dale, British-Canadian pianist and orchestra leader (The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour), dies at 81
  • 2018-01-21 Connie Sawyer [Rosie Cohen], American actress known as "The Clown Princess of Comedy" (Pineapple Express, Dumb and Dumber), dies at 105
  • 2018-04-11 Mitzi Shore [Lillian Saidel], American owner of The Comedy Store and founder of The Comedy Channel, dies at 87
  • 2019-06-10 Sven-David Sandström, Swedish composer (Jeppe: The Cruel Comedy), dies of cancer at 76
  • 2019-10-30 Bernard Slade [Newbound], Canadian screenwriter (The Flying Nun; The Partridge Family), and playwright (Same Time, Next Year; Romantic Comedy), dies of Lewy body dementia at 89
  • 2021-04-07 Anne Beatts, American comedy writer (National Lampoon magazine; Saturday Night Live, 1975-79; Square Pegs), dies at 74