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Aladdin Star Gilbert Gottfried Dies Aged 67

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Aladdin Star Gilbert Gottfried Dies Aged 67

Gilbert Gottfried has died at the age of 67, his family has confirmed.

Mr Gottfried, who starred in classic films such as Aladdin and Beverley Hills Cop 2 died after a short illness.

"We are heartbroken to announce the passing of our beloved Gilbert Gottfried after a long illness," his family statement read.

They said that the actor and comedian was the ‘most iconic voice in comedy’ as well as being a ‘wonderful husband, brother, friend and father to his two young children’.

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The statement concluded: "Although today is a sad day for us all, please keep laughing as possible in Gilbert's honor.”

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

Born in New York, Gottfried started his life on the stand-up circuit in New York City at the age of 15, and became a favourite of his peers.

In 1980, he was hired to work for Saturday Night Live, where he honed his craft.

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Eventually, he worked his way into Hollywood and starred alongside fellow SNL star Eddie Murphy in Beverley Hills Cop II.

He became known for his shrill voice and crass humour, but brought that in spades to a number of career-defining characters, including portraying parrot Iago in Aladdin.

According to Gottfried’s friend and publicist Glenn Schwartz, he had been suffering for a while with Recurrent Ventricular Tachycardia because of Myotonic Dystrophy type II.

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy
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Gottfried was well liked and known for his belief that no topic should be safe from the comedian’s eye.

In an interview with Rolling Stone in 2012, he said: “The other thing that always got me is when they say, ‘Tragedy plus time equals comedy', or when they’ll yell, ‘Too soon!’ I always felt like, ‘OK, please show me where the office is where there’s a guy behind a desk who has it marked off in a calendar when something goes from bad taste to OK.'”

He also had a hit with 1990 film Problem Child, and comedy documentary The Aristocrats in 2005.

Seinfeld star Jason Alexander was amongst the first to pay tribute, writing: “Gilbert Gottfried made me laugh at times when laughter did not come easily. What a gift.

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“I did not know him well but I loved what he shared with me. My best wishes and sympathy to his family.”

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

In more recent years, Gottfried continued to perform and appear on TV, particularly at comedy roast of other celebrities.

He will be most fondly remembered for being 'the comedian's comedian' during his time in New York, though.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: TV and Film, Disney, Celebrity, US News

Tom Wood
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