Pee-wee Herman actor Paul Reubens dies at 70
Reubens was known for playing the character Pee-wee Herman, a cultural phenomenon that spawned numerous films and TV shows
US actor and comedian Paul Reubens has died at age 70, his publicist said in a statement on Monday.
Reubens was known for playing the character Pee-wee Herman, a cultural phenomenon that spawned numerous films and TV shows.
He died on Sunday after struggling with cancer for six years, his publicist said. The comic had not publicly disclosed his condition.
What did the statement say?
"Please accept my apology for not going public with what I've been facing the last six years," Reubens was quoted as saying in a statement released on Monday.
"I have always felt a huge amount of love and respect from my friends, fans and supporters. I have loved you all so much and enjoyed making art for you," he said.
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"Last night we said farewell to Paul Reubens, an iconic American actor, comedian, writer and producer whose beloved character Pee-wee Herman delighted generations of children and adults with his positivity, whimsy and belief in the importance of kindness," the statement said.
"Paul bravely and privately fought cancer for years with his trademark tenacity and wit."
"Paul Reubens was like no one else — a brilliant and original comedian who made kids and their parents laugh at the same time. He never forgot a birthday and shared his genuine delight for silliness with everyone he met," late night host Jimmy Kimmel said in a social media post.
Who was Paul Reubens?
Reubens was born in the northeastern state of New York in 1952. He launched his career as a comedian in Los Angeles in the 1970s.
His seminal character debuted in 1981 as part of the "Pee-wee Herman Show" in a Los Angeles theater in 1981.
The gray-suited persona was best known for the film "Pee-wee's Big Adventure" and the TV series "Pee-wee's Playhouse," with Pee-wee Herman remaining a cultural fixture for much of the 1980s.
In the show "Pee-wee's Playhouse," Pee-wee Herman lives in a wacky home that is visited by a series of other characters.
Pee-wee Herman largely disappeared from the entertainment scene after Reubens was arrested for indecent exposure in 1991. The character returned to screens in the 2016 Netflix production "Pee-wee's Big Holiday."