Many fans learned about the death of Fred Willard on Saturday due to a tweet by Jamie Lee Curtis. Official confirmation for the comedy legend's passing wouldn't come until later, leaving many fans to reach out online and seek comfort from the shocking news.
The Halloween and True Lies actress shared a clip from Best in Show on Twitter while adding that the comedian was now with his late wife Mary. Willard was one of the many recurring actors in the films of Christopher Guest, the husband of Curtis and a comedy legend himself.
How lucky that we all got to enjoy Fred Willard’s gifts. He is with his missed Mary now. Thanks for the deep belly laughs Mr. Willard. Best in Show (7/11) Movie CLIP - Judging the Hounds (2000) HD https://t.co/wPrbk9VjWI via @YouTube— Jamie Lee Curtis (@jamieleecurtis) May 16, 2020
Many others have weighed in since Curtis seemingly broke the news of Willard's death, creating a wealth of heartbreaking messages and emotional farewells. Curtis and her post became a beacon for fans to come together and share their memories of the comic icon.
Willard spoke about working with Guest in a 2016 interview at Collider, saying it was a mixed bag professionally and would push him. The lack of script had the potential to be a real problem, but it offered a lot to the comedian too.
"I like to do a lot of homework. If you get nervous, you can sit down and memorize your lines. But with this, the good part is that you create your own character," Willard told the outlet. "You can't say, 'I wouldn't say that line,' 'cause you would. If you say it, you say it. You just have to stay true to your character."
Scroll down to see some of the other great memories shared by fans and friends online.
Oh No :-( The laughs he always brought to my family, especially in this movie, will be missed and always rememebered!— AlwynHamilton (@AlwynFJH) May 16, 2020
"Oh man, one of the best ever. This is sad," one commenter wrote on Instagram.
Oh no. Such a brilliant talent. So sad. Condolences to his family and the entire Guest Ensemble.— Dominic Pace (@DominicPPace) May 16, 2020
"So sorry for the loss of Fred Willard! What a wonderful witty man! We will all miss him!!" another added.
One of the funniest guys in entertainment tough week first Jerry Stiller and now Fred Willard.— Amber-DFW Girl 👠💄⚽️👗👜🏳️🌈 (@Amber_DFWGirl) May 16, 2020
"[Sad] for us that stay behind but he is reunited with the love of his life," a third wrote on Curtis' post.
I remember Fred going back to his days w/ Martin Mull. Both were Roy Hobbs naturals. Fred could make me laugh as easily as any comedic actor. God bless the man who gave us all such joy. Making people laugh is a gift from the Good Lord.— nick spinelli (@ndspinelli) May 16, 2020
"Oh man. I loved Fred! What a great actor," another noted.
Thank you, Jamie. This was one of his most hilarious moments, perfectly delivered. How we will miss him.— Ohm (Unit of Resistance)🆘️ (@HereToResist) May 16, 2020
"What a loss. I remember him most for his performance in Salem's Lot. I might watch it tonight in his honour," another comment read.
Fernwood, and America, are in mourning. RIP, may your memory be a blessing.— Hieronymus McGillicuddy (@HieronymusMcG) May 16, 2020