JUST IN: Comedy icon Joe Flaherty dead at 82

"After a brief illness, he left us yesterday, and since then, I’ve been struggling to come to terms with this immense loss," Flaherty's daughter said in a statement.

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

Famed actor and comedian Joe Flaherty has died at the age of 82. 

Gudrun Flaherty, the actor’s daughter, told Variety that her father passed after a "brief illness."

"After a brief illness, he left us yesterday, and since then, I’ve been struggling to come to terms with this immense loss," she said. 

"Dad was an extraordinary man, known for his boundless heart and an unwavering passion for movies from the ’40s and ’50s. His insights into the golden age of cinema didn’t just shape his professional life; they were also a source of endless fascination for me. In these last few months, as he faced his health challenges, we had the precious opportunity to watch many of those classic movies together — moments I will forever hold dear."

Flaherty started his career in SCTV, a Canadian sketch series that aired between 1976 and 1984. He performed alongside John Candy, Catherine O’Hara, and Martin Short. Flaherty was also a writer of the show. The show was nominated for nine Primetime Emmy Awards for outstanding writing in a variety or music program and two home two of those awards.

Short told Variety, "In over 50 years of our friendship, there were very few people as wise or hilarious when it came to comedy, teaching improvisation and the art of character work as Joe. In ‘SCTV’ we called him the anchor. In life, he was simply the funniest man in the room. I just adored him."

Other film credits include his role as Harold Weir in Freaks and Geeks, Donald the heckler in Happy Gilmore, and a Western Union courier in Back to the Future, as well as appearances on The King of Queens, Family Guy, and One Crazy Summer.

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