Norm McDonald, deadpan Quebec comedian who rose to fame from Canadian nightclubs saturday night live Fame, has died at the age of 61 after a personal battle with cancer.
Representatives for his management agency Brillstein Entertainment Partners confirmed the death on Tuesday, saying no further information was available.
The revelation came as a shock to many as Mr MacDonald had not shared his diagnosis with his fans.
The Quebec City-raised standup was best known for his stint in saturday night live from 1993 to 1998, where he appeared behind the “Weekend Update” desk to mock the latest news events.
He also made an impression of Burt Reynolds as a contestant. Danger!, one of his most beloved characters.
Yuk Yuk co-founder Mark Breslin said Mr MacDonald’s enormous star power was evident from his early days on the Canadian comedy circuit, where he created a unique voice from the beginning, impressing his peers.
“He combined a laconic delivery and a deadpan look, and yet he had such a great sparkle in his blue eyes to tell you everything was a joke,” said Mr. Breslin. “And it was a really powerful combination of all those things.”
Mr Macdonald accumulated a devoted following among comedy fans for his disapproval of the easy punchlines.
He would appear in several films with his ex. SNL classmates including adam sandler billy madison and in Rob Schneider Animal.
Mr Macdonald also led the 1998 Hollywood comedy dirty work, directed by Bob Saget, where he played one of two friends who start a business of revenge for rent. The film was a box-office flop, but gained a cult following after its release on home video.
Later in his career, he would host his Netflix talk show, Norm Macdonald has a show, and voice the character of the dove mike tyson mystery.