April 21, 2024

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Tributes are pouring in for Joe Flaherty, whose career launched with Canadian sketch comedy series SCTV, and who was known for his roles as Harold Weir on Freaks and Geeks, and Donald the heckler in Happy Gilmore. Flaherty died Monday at the age of 82.

Martin Short, Flaherty’s co-star on SCTV, remembered Flaherty as “the funniest man in the room.”

“In over 50 years of our friendship, there were very few people as wise or hilarious when it came to comedy, teaching improvisation and the art of character work as Joe,” Short wrote in a press statement. “In ‘SCTV’ we called him the anchor. In life, he was simply the funniest man in the room. I just adored him.”

Adam Sandler paid tribute to his Happy Gilmore co-star in a post on Instagram.

“Oh man. Worshipped Joe growing up, Sandler wrote next to photo of Flaherty. “Always had me and my brother laughing. Count Floyd, Guy Caballero. Any move he made. He crushed as border guard in Stripes. Couldn’t be more fun to have him heckle me on the golf course. The nicest guy you could know. Genius of a comedian. And a true sweetheart. Perfect combo. Much love to his kids and thanks to Joe for all the greatness he gave us all.”

Freaks and Geeks creator Paul Feig also remembered Flaherty on X, writing, “So sad to hear about dear Joe. He was my TV dad and a true comedy hero. Always happy to tell any story about your favorite SCTV sketch, he was just the greatest guy. I will truly miss him and always be grateful to have known him. Rest in comedy, Joe.”

We will have share more reactions as they come in…



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