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'Saturday Night Live' veteran Norm Macdonald dies of cancer at 61

Norm Macdonald hosted Norm Macdonald Has a Show on Netflix. The comedian died of cancer at age 61. Photo courtesy of Netflix
Norm Macdonald hosted "Norm Macdonald Has a Show" on Netflix. The comedian died of cancer at age 61. Photo courtesy of Netflix

Sept. 14 (UPI) -- Norm Macdonald died Tuesday after a private battle with cancer. Macdonald's manager, Marc Gurvitz, confirmed the comedian's death to USA Today and the firm Brillstein Entertainment confirmed to Deadline. Macdonald was 61.

A standup comedian, Macdonald was a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 1993 - 1998. He replaced Kevin Nealon as the host of Weekend Update in 1994.

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SNL made Colin Quinn the host of Update in 1998 and fired Macdonald at the end of the '97-98 season. Macdonald returned to host the show on Oct. 23, 1999.

Macdonald appeared in Adam Sandler's film Billy Madison in 1995. He got his own movie, Dirty Work, released in the summer of 1998 following his SNL departure.

Macdonald would cameo in Rob Schneider's Deuce Bigelow movies and The Animal. He co-starred with Dave Chappelle and Danny DeVito in 2000's Screwed and voiced Lucky the Dog in the Dr. Dolittle films.

Fellow comedians Patton Oswalt, Jim Carrey and Steve Martin shared remembrances of Macdonald.

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"My dear friend Norm MacDonald passed after a brave 10 year battle. He was one of our most precious gems. An honest and courageous comedy genius. I love him," Carrey tweeted.

Macdonald had two television sitcoms. Norm lasted three seasons and A Minute with Stan Hooper lasted one.

He launched the podcast Norm Macdonald Live in 2013 and hosted a Netflix talk show in 2018. In between, he appeared on televised poker tournaments and was a judge on NBC's 2015 season of Last Comic Standing.

Macdonald was active on social media. His last tweet was on July 16 golfer Colin Morikawa.

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Cast member Melvin Van Peebles attends the premiere of "Peeples" in Los Angeles on May 8, 2013. The influential filmmaker and actor died on September 22 at the age of 89. Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

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