Richard Jeni, one of the funniest standups in the comedy world, was rushed to the hospital Saturday night after his girlfriend called police to say her boyfriend had shot himself. He died at a hospital in Hollywood.
He was one of those comics that all other comics went into the room to watch when he was on stage. There is no greater compliment a standup can pay another one than to do that. He was a great performer and a terrific writer and just a really funny guy.
I heard that his mother arrived in LA today to make preparations to take him back to Brooklyn. What a sad time for a parent. It is a sad time for all of us in the comedy community. He is not the first suicide in our business, we have lost many a great comic mind over the years. I've always thought it ironic that in a business where we describe ourselves as 'dying' in front of an audience or 'killing' at a certain club that so many of us may keep going with such a sad undercurrent running like faulty electricity through our lives.
I only knew him as Rich, he became Richard when he moved to Hollywood so, R.I.P. Rich.
End of chat. Literally.