The Aladdin star and comedian Gilbert Gottfried has died aged 67 after a long period of illness. The star’s family announced the news on his official Twitter account on April 12, posting a photo of the comedian along with a brief statement paying tribute to Gottfried.
“We are heartbroken to announce the passing of our beloved Gilbert Gottfried after a long illness. In addition to being the most iconic voice in comedy, Gilbert was a wonderful husband, brother, friend and father to his two young children,” the family’s statement read. “Although today is a sad day for all of us, please keep laughing as loud as possible in Gilbert’s honour. Love, the Gottfried family,”
Gottfried’s publicist told the Washington Post that comedian died due to complications from muscular dystrophy. Best known for his iconic shrill voice and crude humour, Gottfried breathed life into the character Iago -the sidekick to Disney villain Jafar – in the 1992 film Aladdin, which is widely considered one of the best animated movies ever made.
A number of celebrities have come out to pay tribute to Gottfried on social media, including Seinfeld star Jason Alexander. “Gilbert Gottfried made me laugh at times when laughter did not come easily,” Alexander wrote. “What a gift. I did not know him well, but I loved what he shared with me. My best wishes and sympathy to his family.”
Gilbert Gottfried made me laugh so hard that day on set, I could barely do my job. A wholly original comic, and an equally kind and humble guy behind the scenes. He will be missed. https://t.co/93cKB6KEg8
— Seth MacFarlane (@SethMacFarlane) April 12, 2022
Rest In Peace Gilbert Gottfried! First time I saw him live he did his Jackie Kennedy bit: “Jackie do you remember where you were…” in front of drunk Bruins fans at Nicks. #RIPGilbertGottfried https://t.co/9w0offZEZG
— Bill Burr (@billburr) April 12, 2022
Posting this to laugh while I cry. That time I got to Gilbert Gottfried with Gilbert Gottfried at COMICON, back in the #AMJoy days. What a great and funny guy. Rest in peace and deepest condolences to his family. 😔😢 pic.twitter.com/p89vfJnVMO
— Joy-Ann (Pro-Democracy) Reid 😷 (@JoyAnnReid) April 12, 2022
rest in peace to Gilbert Gottfried who has probably the best sequence in game show history on Hollywood Squares. if you're not an old hag like me who remembers the rules, both contestants needed his square to secure the 5-square win, but he decided to troll both of them pic.twitter.com/Egzyzygudd
— manny (@mannyfidel) April 12, 2022
I’m just heartbroken about Gilbert Gottfried’s passing. I had no idea he was battling an illness. He was a treasure; a hilarious, deeply feeling, mensch of a man. pic.twitter.com/v0fykzjjfx
— Alan Menken (@AIMenken) April 12, 2022
Gottfried is survived by his wife, Dara Kravitz, who he married in 2007, his 14-year-old daughter Lily and his 12-year-old son Max.