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r.i.p.

Jonathan Winters Dead at Age 87

Jonathan Winters brandishes a loaf of bread, acting the part of a waiter at a large restaurant asking for a tip.

Legendary comedian Jonathan Winters passed away of natural causes last night at the age of 87. Winters was a pioneer in improvisational comedy, able to quickly jump from unique character to unique character, hilarious idea to hilarious idea. He was a fixture of late-night television, frequently appearing on The Jack Paar Program and Johnny Carson's Tonight Show. Over the course of his career, he appeared in more than 50 movies and tons of television. This included notable parts in It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (where he actually played two roles) and in the last season of Mork & Mindy, where he played the lead's child. Most recently, he voiced Papa Smurf in The Smurfs and upcoming The Smurfs 2. The Mark Twain Prize–winning Winters was an immensely influential and hilarious comedian, and he'll surely be missed. Below watch a famous clip from 1964 where Paar gives Winters a stick and Winters does four brilliantly funny minutes with it, building scene after scene.

Photo: null/Bettman/Corbis