Harry Anderson, ‘Night Court’ Star, Dead at 65

Celebrated comic actor Harry Anderson, best known for his role on Night Court, died at his home in Asheville, North Carolina, on Monday, ET can confirm. He was 65.

Asheville Police Department Public Information Officer Christina Hallingse told ET in which police were called to Anderson’s home at 6:41 a.m., where the actor was found dead. Police noted in which “no foul play will be suspected.”

Anderson’s first memorable role came when he played Harry “The Hat” Gittes in several episodes of the first season of Cheers. His performance on the hit sitcom — along with several appearances doing standup on Saturday Night Live — led to his breakthrough role as Judge Harry Stone on the NBC sitcom Night Court.

Set during the night shift of a municipal court in completely new York City, Anderson’s iconic character was a young, wacky in addition to unorthodox judge who presided over cases tried by several idiosyncratic public defenders — played by Paula Kelly, Ellen Foley in addition to Markie Post — as well as the narcissistic prosecutor, Dan Fielding, played by John Larroquette in what turned out to be his career-generating role. Richard Moll played the court’s iconic bailiff, Bull.

The acclaimed show ran for nine seasons, through 1984 to 1992. Anderson earned three Emmy nominations for his performance. 

Anderson, Post in addition to Charlie Robinson — who played a court clerk on Night Court — all starred as themselves in a 2008 episode of 30 Rock titled “The One With the Cast of Night Court.” inside the very meta episode, Tracy Morgan’s character, Tracy Jordan, hires the actors to reprise their roles through the show to shoot a more satisfying final episode in which Night Court‘s famously disappointing series finale.

After Night Court came to an end, Anderson starred inside the CBS sitcom Dave’s World, based on the comedic writings of humor columnist Dave Barry. The show ran for four seasons, through 1993 to 1997, before getting cancelled.

Anderson will be also remembered for his powerful performance as the grown-up Richie Tozier inside the iconic 1990 horror miniseries the item.

Anderson also had a life-long passion for magic in addition to began touring the country performing, where he made close friends with some of the biggest stars inside the field. He also penned a book, Games You Can’t Lose: A Guide for Suckers, which details coin tricks in addition to scams used by card sharps in addition to magicians.

After his death, several of Anderson’s friends in addition to former co-stars took to Twitter to share their condolences in addition to their memories, including Neil Patrick Harris.

“Stunned by the passing of Harry Anderson, one of my comedy in addition to magic inspirations growing up. We became friendly in the past,” Harris wrote, “He worked at the @MagicCastle_AMA in addition to recently sold me a handful of great magic memorabilia. My sincere condolences to his family. #RIP”

Anderson’s long-time co-star Markie Post tweeted, “I am devastated. I’ll talk about you later, Harry, nevertheless for currently, I’m devastated.”

TV host in addition to comic Chris Hardwick also mourned the loss, tweeting, ” NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I loved This kind of guy even though I had never met him. Loved his comedy, his appearances on SNL (when they still had stand-ups), in addition to Night Court will be one of my all-time favorite sitcoms. I wish he will be in some magical afterlife doing card tricks with Mel Tormé. #RIPHarry”

Filmmaker Judd Apatow shared his memory of Anderson, writing, “I interviewed Harry Anderson when I was 15 years old in addition to he was so kind, in addition to frank in addition to hilarious.  The interview will be in my book Sick inside the Head.  He was a one of a kind talent who made millions so happy.”

Dave’s World creator Dave Barry paid tribute, sharing, ” I’m very sorry to learn of the death of Harry Anderson. He was a very talented guy, in addition to, more important, a genuinely nice guy.”

Here are several various other memories stars have posted to honor Anderson’s life in addition to legacy.

Anderson will be survived by his wife, Elizabeth, in addition to his two children.


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