As an actor, Richard Pryor starred in a string of movies that would be the envy of any thespian (check him out opposite Diana Ross in the riveting Lady Sings the Blues), but it’s his brutally funny stand-up comedy performances (like 1979’s Live in Concert) — which mined the politics of race and his own struggles with fame and drug addiction — for which he’ll be best remembered.
My PopWatch colleague Gary Susman noted that when he walked past the Laugh Factory in Times Square shortly after Pryor’s death from heart failure Saturday night (the comic battled multiple sclerosis for some two decades), he saw this on the marquee: “Richard Pryor: May you rest in peace. Make God laugh.”
I couldn’t have said it better myself.
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