Norman Lear, Legendary Sitcom Producer and All in the Family Creator, Dead at 101

Spoilers

Norman Lear, one of the most influential figures in American comedy, has died.

According to reports, Lear died Tuesday.

He was 101.

The All in the Family creator died of natural causes.

“Norman lived a life in awe of the world around him,” reads a message posted on his official Instagram account.

Norman Lear speaks onstage at the Oscar Wilde

“He marveled at his cup of coffee every morning, the shape of the tree outside his window, and the sounds of beautiful music.

“But it was people — those he just met and those he knew for decades — who kept his mind and heart forever young.

“As we celebrate his legacy and reflect on the next chapter of life without him, we would like to thank everyone for all the love and support,” the emotional message concludes.

Lear’s family also shared a statement that thanked fans for their support during this difficult time.

Studio Audience' onstage at the 25th Annual Critics' Choice Awards at Barker Hangar

“Thank you for the moving outpouring of love and support in honor of our wonderful husband, father, and grandfather,” Lear’s family said in a statement.

“Norman lived a life of creativity, tenacity, and empathy.

“He deeply loved our country and spent a lifetime helping to preserve its founding ideals of justice and equality for all.

“Knowing and loving him has been the greatest of gifts.

Norman Lear accepts the Best Comedy Special for 'Live in Front of a Studio Audience

“We ask for your understanding as we mourn privately in celebration of this remarkable human being.”

Whether you know of Lear or not, there’s a good chance you watched many of the shows he worked on.

His biggest hits were in the 1970s, with shows like All in the Family, Good Times, and The Jeffersons delivering unique spins on American comedy.

Lear never fell away from the entertainment industry, either, with him winning Emmy Awards for 2019 and 2020’s Live in Front of a Studio Audience.

Norman Lear attends the 25th Annual Critics' Choice Awards at Barker Hangar

Those aforementioned telecasts found works of Lear’s being reenacted with new performers.

Lear had a massive impact on American comedy and was one of the seven original inductees into the TV Hall of Fame in 1984. 

One of his biggest shows was All in the Family, which had a long and winding road to the screen.

ABC declined the series twice before CBS stepped in and handed out a formal series order.

Norman Lear accepts the Britannia Award for Excellence in Television

“The program you are about to see is All in the Family,” read the disclaimer at the beginning of the series. 

“It seeks to throw a humorous spotlight on our frailties, prejudices and concerns,” the show adds.

“By making them a source of laughter, we hope to show — in a mature fashion — just how absurd they are.”

The comedy great was also well known for One Day at a Time, which recently got a Netflix reboot. 

Norman Lear attends the 2019 British Academy Britannia Awards presented by American Airlines and Jaguar Land Rover

The series was canceled after three seasons, but fans didn’t allow the series to die, urging Pop to pick up the show for a fourth — and final — season.

Lear was also known for the headwear he first wore to prevent him from picking at his head during writer’s block.

“One day [his second wife] Frances came into my study and threw a little white boating hat on my head to keep me from picking,” he wrote in his 2014 memoir, Even This I Get to Experience.

“It worked, and that is how my nearly 50-year love affair with that white hat began,” he added.

May Norman Lear rest in peace.

Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on X.

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