Anthony 'AJ' Johnson, 'Friday' star and comedian, dead at 55

Sept. 20 (UPI) -- Anthony 'AJ' Johnson, an actor and comedian best known for starring in Friday, has died at the age of 55.

Johnson's representative LyNea Bell confirmed his death to CNN and Entertainment Weekly. A cause of death has not been disclosed.


"The world of comedy has truly been shaken, again. Our BH Talent family is heartbroken about the loss of the iconic legend of stage and screen Mr. Anthony 'AJ' Johnson. He has left with us amazing memories of his laughter, dynamic acting skills, but most of all his enormous personality and heart of gold," Bell said.

"We will be in constant prayer for his entire family including his wife Lexis, three children, brother Edward 'Peanut' Smith, sister Sheila and lifetime manager and friend Mike D. Please give them the time they need to process and grieve such a huge loss," Bell continued.

Johnson portrayed Ezal in 1995's Friday alongside Ice Cube and Chris Tucker. Johnson's Ezal memorably tried to act like he fell inside of a convenience store and stole Deebo's (Tom Lister Jr.) shoes.

"Sad to wake up to the news about AJ Johnson passing away. Naturally funny dude who was straight outta Compton at the same time. Sorry I couldn't bring your character Ezal back to the big screen in Last Friday," Ice Cube said on Twitter while mentioning a fourth installment of the comedy series.


Johnson also performed stand-up comedy and additionally starred as E.Z.E. in 1990's House Party. Other film roles include Menace II Society, Lethal Weapon 3, I Got the Hook-Up, I Got That Hook-Up 2, Office Staff, The Player's Club and more.

Television roles included appearances on Malcolm & Eddie, Martin and The Jamie Foxx Show.

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