Today fans learned that beloved actor Fred Willard passed away at the age of 86. Willard's daughter shared the sad news on Twitter, and since then reactions from all over have been flowing into Twitter and all across social media. Willard's ability to make even the most mundane moment funny was on display throughout his career in a number of films, television shows, and animated projects. That said, it's hard not to immediately think of his brilliant work in the Christopher Guest series of Mockumentaries, which included films like Waiting For Guffman, A Mighty Wind, Best In Show, and For Your Consideration.
Willard's first credited acting role was as Ben in 1966's Pistols 'n' Petticoats, and he would appear in projects like Get Smart (1968), Love, American Style (1970), and Sirota's Court (1976) along with a variety of other shows and films. He would play the memorable role of Jerry Hubbard though in 1977's Fernwood Tonight, followed by a role in the TV movie Space Force in 1978.
That would be followed by memorable appearances as Hank MacDougall on Everybody Loves Raymond and Frank Dunphy in Modern Family, as well as a number of animated projects, including Scooby-Doo, G.I. Joe: Renegades, Transformers, WALL-E, Kim Possible, and more.
Funnily enough, he appeared in another show called Space Force just recently, though this one is a bit different. Willard plays the role of Fred Naird in the upcoming streaming series, which comes out later this year.
Hit the next slide to see some of the many tributes that have been pouring in for Willard, and our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time.
Regardless of what character Willard was playing, there was always a humanity to them that seemed to come through, and that will be missed.
"#RIP to the incomparable @Fred_Willard I will miss the wit, the humor, the humanity you conveyed with such ease. One of my favorite comedians & humans."
All Time Faves
Willard's roles in the Christopher Guest movies are all superb, though for many his role in Best in Show is the best.
"Rest In Peace, sir. So many amazing films. Best in Show is one of my all time favs #FredWillard"
Master of Comedy
Willard was a specialist in the realm of comedy and could make the most mundane sequence entertaining.
RIP Fred Willard, an absolute master of comedy, possibly the funniest person of all time— stu (@rinbcage) May 16, 2020
"RIP Fred Willard, an absolute master of comedy, possibly the funniest person of all time"
No matter the role, Willard would make it shine, and it was always funny too.
Aww, RIP Fred Willard.— Jools Evelyndoors (@joolsevelyn) May 16, 2020
Always found him hilarious in every role he encapsulated. pic.twitter.com/Tf0FJFJJZ1
"Aww, RIP Fred Willard.
Always found him hilarious in every role he encapsulated."
Fans are sad to lose Willard, but they also want to thank him for all the laughs.
Oh, man! This is devastating. So saddened to hear of the passing of Fred Willard. One of the greatest comedians to ever walk the earth. He couldn’t have been funnier. He was pure joy. RIP Fred. Thank you for the laughs. Your legacy will live on forever because legends never die. pic.twitter.com/SBtCp8Z8FI— Wirjil (@Wirjil) May 16, 2020
"Oh, man! This is devastating. So saddened to hear of the passing of Fred Willard. One of the greatest comedians to ever walk the earth. He couldn’t have been funnier. He was pure joy. RIP Fred. Thank you for the laughs. Your legacy will live on forever because legends never die."
Going To Be Missed
Many fans are sharing their favorite Willard moments, and that includes his memorable role in A Mighty Wind.
I’m gonna miss Fred Willard everyday https://t.co/1YYDVGQX48— JortsArt (@jortsEC) May 16, 2020
"I’m gonna miss Fred Willard everyday"
Willard has so many great film and television projects on his resume, though many will always hold a special place for his roles in films like Best In Show and Waiting For Guffman.
So sad to see Fred Willard passed away. I can’t express how much he made me laugh, I mean from Best in Show alone?! Then throw in Waiting for Guffman and Mighty Wind...legendary. RIP Fred— Steven Garelick (@sleevin_steven) May 16, 2020
"So sad to see Fred Willard passed away. I can’t express how much he made me laugh, I mean from Best in Show alone?! Then throw in Waiting for Guffman and Mighty Wind...legendary. RIP Fred"
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