Richard Pryor

filed under | people | comedy

Share/Bookmark

Richard Franklin Lennox Thomas Pryor III was an American stand-up comedian, actor, and writer. Pryor was known for uncompromising examinations of racism and topical contemporary issues, which employed colorful, vulgar, and profane language and racial epithets. He reached a broad audience with his trenchant observations and storytelling style. He is widely regarded as one of the most important stand-up comedians: Jerry Seinfeld called Pryor "The Picasso of our profession"; Bob Newhart has called Pryor "the seminal comedian of the last 50 years." His body of work includes the concert movies and recordings Richard Pryor: Live and Smokin' (1971), That Nigger's Crazy (1974), ...Is It Something I Said? (1975), Bicentennial Nigger (1976), Richard Pryor: Live in Concert (1979), Richard Pryor: Live on the Sunset Strip (1982), and Richard Pryor: Here and Now (1983). He also starred in numerous films as an actor such as Superman III (1983) but was usually in comedies such as Silver Streak (1976), but occasionally in dramatic roles, such as Paul Schrader's film Blue Collar (1978). He collaborated on many projects with actor Gene Wilder. Pryor developed a reputation for being difficult and unprofessional on film sets, and for making unreasonable demands. In his autobiography Kiss Me Like a Stranger, co-star Gene Wilder says that Pryor was frequently late to the set during filming of Stir Crazy, and that he demanded, among other things, a helicopter to fly him to and from set. On June 9, 1980, during the making of the film Bustin' Loose, Pryor set himself on fire after freebasing cocaine while drinking 151-proof rum. He ran down Parthenia St. from his Northridge, California, home until subdued by police. He was taken to the hospital, where he was treated for burns covering more than half of his body. Pryor spent six weeks in recovery at the Grossman Burn Center at Sherman Oaks Hospital. His daughter, Rain Pryor, has stated that Pryor poured high-proof rum over his body and set himself on fire in a bout of drug-induced psychosis. Pryor was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1986. On December 10, 2005, Pryor went into cardiac arrest in Encino, California. He was taken to a local hospital after his wife's attempts to resuscitate him failed. He was pronounced dead at 7:58 am PST. His widow Jennifer was quoted as saying, "At the end, there was a smile on his face." He was cremated and his ashes were given to friends and family. WARNING: VIDEO CLIP CONTAINS STRONG LANGUAGE. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]





wikisnap.com is not affiliated with or endorsed by wikipedia. wikipedia and the wikipedia globe are registered trademarks of wikipedia.org.
article content reproduced in compliance with wikipedia's copyright policy and gnu free documentation license
view our privacy policy and terms of service here