Fred Willard, the prolific and beloved comic actor and master of the mockumentary genre who stood out in ensemble comedies like Best in Show, For Your Consideration and This Is Spinal Tap, died Friday at the age of 86.
Willard’s rep Glenn Schwartz confirmed his death to Rolling Stone, adding that the cause of death was natural causes. Willard’s daughter Hope Mulbarger said in a statement, “My father passed away very peacefully last night at the fantastic age of 86 years old. He kept moving, working and making us happy until the very end. We loved him so very much! We will miss him forever.”
Jamie Lee Curtis, wife of Willard’s longtime director Christopher Guest, first shared news of the actor’s death.
“How lucky that we all got to enjoy Fred Willard’s gifts,” Curtis tweeted. “He is with his missed Mary now. Thanks for the deep belly laughs Mr. Willard.” Willard’s wife of 40 years, Mary, died in 2018.
Fred Willard, the comic actor who stood out in mockumentaries like ‘Best in Show’ and ‘This Is Spinal Tap,’ has died at the age of 86.