Skip to comments.Comedian Richard Jeni Dead
Posted on 03/11/2007 9:28:15 AM PDT by Borges
Comedian Richard Jeni is dead from an apparent suicide. Sources tell Extra Jeni was in his West Hollywood, CA apartment. He had been scheduled to perform at the Chicago Improv tonight but cancelled several weeks ago.
Raised in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, New York, Richard Jeni first received recognition through a series of Showtime stand-up specials and frequent appearances on The Tonight Show. Top executives at HBO noticed Jeni's talent, and he was soon picked up for his first appearance on the coveted HBO Comedy Hour in 1992, entitled Richard Jeni: Platypus Man. The show was very well received, and Jeni would return for 2 more shows, and go on to receive a CableACE Award for one of his HBO specials. Jeni would also star on the short-lived UPN sitcom Platypus Man, and appear in the Jim Carrey film The Mask. He also has starred in commercial campaigns for Certs, Arby's, and won a CLIO Award for his work as a writer/performer in a campaign for the Milk Association. 
Jeni's website biography claims that he has appeared more on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno than any other stand-up comedian, dating back to when the Tonight Show was hosted by Johnny Carson.
In 2004, Jeni was named number 57 on Comedy Central's list of the 100 greatest standups of all time. Jeni is a graduate of Hunter College, where he majored in political science.
Never heard of him. Regardless, RIP, Richard.
He was Jim Carrey's friend in The Mask.
Me neither. I guess I have to get out more.
Particularly loved this joke he did: "You know that stuff, 'I can't believe it's not butter'? What if they put something like foot ointment in there? Then you taste it and go 'Hey! This isn't butter!' And they'll come back and say 'Hey, we never said it was."
How sad. My sympathes to his family and friends.
Never expected suicide from Jeni..guess one can never tell. Really cleverly funny guy and there's not very many left.. Rip Mr. Jeni..thanks for the laughs.
I never heard of him either but my heart aches for people that get to such a dark place in their lives they feel the only way out is suicide....so sad
Couldn't handle the time change?
In all seriousness, sad news.
Years ago... I thought he'd be the next Steve Martin. The guy had some good stuff and cracked me up. Then he seemed to drop out of sight... almost like quality, stand-up comedy did.
how awful. I saw his HBO special; he was hilarious.
Cacique, do you think they will name a street after him in Bensonhurst, much like they did for Vincent Gardenia?
Dang!!!!!! He was a major talent-- I have seen him live, and I laughed so hard my stomach hurt the next day. Here are some of his jokes from a recent show (***WARNING: NSFW LANGUAGE***):
Goodbye funnyman-- the comedy world is a lot less now that you're gone.
I saw his HBO stuff and much of it was very very funny. Never knew he was depressed...he will be missed.
I heard Billy Bartie commited sucide last week
Jumped of a curb
Rip Richard Jeni
Being a big fan of stand-up, I was quite familiar with Jeni. Very funny stuff. I agree, the quality of stand-up has gone way down hill. Witness Dane Cook.
A little more detail here---
"Never expected suicide from Jeni..guess one can never tell. Really cleverly funny guy and there's not very many left.. Rip Mr. Jeni..thanks for the laughs."
Funny guy. Condolences to the family.
A cry for help? Rest in peace.
RIP Richard Jeni, Please see my Tagline.
Sad news . Rodney Dangerfield struggled with depression his whole life, but hung in there and talked about it publically, especially later in his life. He found some docs who helped him understand it was something he could control rather than it controlling him.
"Richard Jeni - PMS and Red Wine"
"Richard Jeni - Political Parties"
Rodney did a great job of turning lemons into lemonade.
>"Richard Jeni - PMS and Red Wine"
THAT -- is my husband's and my favorite routine of his. It **IS** so funny because it's true!
"Chest size: Three-niner. Cup size: David... David... David..."
"David-David-David" is now a catchphrase between me and my hubby whenever we both spot a "well-endowed" woman ;-)
Richard Jeni was easily the funniest man I've ever seen. My wife and I made a point of seeing him every time he was in our area. He'd make you laugh so hard you'd start sweating.
"Richard Jeni - Martha Stewart"
He was funny. RIP. Prayers for his family.
Very sad. Brad Delp of Boston and now Jeni, who brought freshness to a mostly-mined-out genre.
Very sad news. I enjoyed his comedy. Prayers for family nd friends.
Anybody know where I can get a panda for the grill of my Navigator?
I can't believe it. I saw that special and it was very funny. I loved the way he defended America from the bashers saying "20 million illegal aliens can't be wrong!" RIP.
Dolphin saving, salmon eating hypocrites.
Yup, he was great. One of his classic comments about libs...
"Then they can't wait to strap your ass to back of a Toyota Hybrid, and drive you to the Berkeley campus and drop your carcass off in front of the Fidel Castro building for the Continuing Study of "Why America Sucks.""
This really sucks - he was a great stand up comic.
Extremely sad, and not the only such case. Apparently, a lot of the most creative comedy writers and actors suffer from depression.
The bipolar folks have the highest percentage of completed suicide. The most dangerous time for them is when they are in the so-called "mixed" state, where they have energy, but are in a dismal mood. It appears that at this time they have the get-up-and-go to actually ACT on their suicidal thoughts.
A fellow Hunter alumni and poli sci no less. Sorry to hear the news. Depression kills, gotta get help.
Dopn't know if they will name a street in Bensonhurst. It's changed quite a great deal. Don't know if with today's makeup they would name a street after Gardenia. I think those Ruskies and Chinese would prefer one named after Stalin.
He was one of the best...sad news.
I was sad to hear this yesterday.. I laughed at his material many times, he was one of the great ones.. condolences to his family...especially the poor girlfriend who was there at the time..
I wonder if people who are unhappy with themselves in real life gravitate to stand-up comedy.
Goodnight, funnyman ...
"I wonder if people who are unhappy with themselves in real life gravitate to stand-up comedy."
Yeah I think so. Many are looking for acceptance and an emotional high from being an entertainer. I knew Rodney and I toyed with the idea myself of doing standup when I was going through a rough period. I never went down that road, although Rodney encouraged me to write material for him. I got a lot out of that experience. He was a terrific guy.
Just heard about this the other day. I saw him do a show here in Denver in the 1990s. Boy was he filthy--but very funny as well. Sorry to hear about his mental health problems and the sad end to his life.
1 Richard Jeni and Greg Giraldo March 30, 2007
Friday - 8:00 PM Keswick Theatre Glenside, PA
He had a show tonight.
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