Comedian and actor Richard Lewis of Curb Your Enthusiasm fame passes away

Actor and comedian Richard Lewis, best known for the popular sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasm, died on Tuesday following a heart attack. He was 76.

In a statement to Deadline, Lewis’ publicist Jeff Abraham said the actor passed away on Tuesday night at his house in Los Angeles. Richard revealed he had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2023.

“His wife, Joyce Lapinsky, thanks everyone for all the love, friendship and support and asks for privacy at this time,” Abraham said.

Richard is renowned for his acerbic and dark sense of humour, and rose to fame in the 1970s and ’80s. Transitioning seamlessly, he ventured into acting, gracing films like Robin Hood: Men in Tights and making memorable appearances as himself on HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm

He soon developed a singular stage persona nearly as dark as the all-black clothes he favoured. His stand-up performances could best be described as straddling comedy and therapy. Lewis’ website prominently features a quote from comedy great Mel Brooks: “Richard Lewis may just be the Franz Kafka of modern-day comedy.”

Actor Jamie Lee Curtis, who played the romantic co-lead opposite Mr Lewis in Anything But Love, paid tribute to him on Instagram, writing: “He also is the reason I am sober. He helped me. I am forever grateful to him for that act of grace alone. He found love with Joyce and that, of course, besides his sobriety, is what mattered most to him. I’m weeping as I write this. Strange way of saying thank you to a sweet and funny man. Rest in laughter, Richard.”

Although he largely retired from performing following his Parkinson’s diagnosis, he returned to Curb periodically, most recently during the show’s current (and final) season.