Paul Mooney has died at the age of 79.
The iconic comedian – who was best known for serving as a writer on ‘The Richard Pryor Show’, ‘The Rosanne Show’, and ‘Saturday Night Live’ – passed away on Wednesday (19.05.21) at his home in Oakland, California, after suffering a heart attack.
His publicist Cassandra Williams said in a statement: "Paramedics tried unsuccessfully to revive him after he suffered a heart attack. He was staying with a family member who was a caregiver."
And his daughter, Spring Mooney, also confirmed her father’s death on Twitter.
She wrote: “Give me a moment. My best friend just died and my world is forever SHOOK !!! I really can’t put into words right now my feelings .. know that I LOVE THIS MAN AND I AM BROKEN. (sic)”
Paul was famous for playing the role of Sam Cooke in 1978’s ‘The Buddy Holly Story’, as well as playing Junebug in Spike Lee’s acclaimed 2000 comedy ‘Bamboozled’.
The actor and comedian also held roles in Dave Chappelle’s smash hit ‘Chappelle’s Show’.
And following the news of his passing, many stars have already taken to social media to honour his memory.
Viola Davis wrote: "Awww.... RIP comedy legend Paul Mooney! You were both funny and poignant. So happy to have witnessed your genius live. Rest well!!! Pour down some laughter here. We need it. (sic)”
Whilst director Ava DuVernay posted: "Paul Mooney. A comedy giant. I recall listening to his RACE album in college and how formative it was. Yeah, the jokes. But more so, the freedom. He spoke freely and fearlessly about feelings and experiences others found difficult to express. May he be truly free now. Rest, sir. (sic)”