louie anderson
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 10: Comedian / Actor Louie Anderson attends the AOL Build Speakers Series at AOL Studios In New York on March 10, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)

RIP Louie Anderson: The Best GIFs Honoring the Hilarious ‘Baskets’ Actor

The entertainment world has lost a bright ray of sunshine. Comedian and actor Louie Anderson died today in Las Vegas from cancer-related complications. The funnyman whose career spanned decades and entertainment genres was only 68.

His backstory is as surprising as his career was. Born in St. Paul, Minnesota, he grew up with 10 brothers and sisters. He once jokingly said that he’s “20 percent Norwegian, 80 percent butter.” While working as a counselor for troubled kids, he entered the 1981 Midwest Comedy Competition – and won first place. That opened the door for a writing gig, and soon he was gracing stages doing stand-up all across the country.

A stint hosting Family Feud led to myriad TV gigs and movies roles, including those in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Coming to America. He became animated for the cartoon series Life With Louie. But he won the approval of critics when he starred as matriarch Christine on Baskets. The role – which was based on the women in his own family – garnered him an Emmy for outstanding supporting actor in a comedy series.

In addition to his impressive acting credits and 12 solo stand-up specials, Anderson was also an accomplished author. His best-selling books addressed issues of family and self-esteem.

Anderson truly packed a lot of life – and a lot of laughs – into his brief time on Earth. His gap-toothed smile will be sorely missed on the big and small screens. In honor of this ever-evolving funnyman, we rounded up his funniest GIFS, even as we are well aware that much of his humor preceded the internet.

Cover Photo: Dave Kotinsky / Contributor (Getty Images)