On what would have been his 80th birthday, fans of Richard Pryor are paying tribute to the legendary comedian on social media. With his unique delivery and witty sense of humor, Pryor is widely considered to be one of the greatest and most influential stand-up comedians of all time. The five-time Grammy winner is consistently ranked in the No. 1 spot in internet lists listing history’s best comedians, and other big names like George Carlin and Eddie Murphy have credited Pryor as an influence on their own stand-up careers.
Sadly, Richard Pryor passed away in 2005 after suffering a third heart attack at the age of 65. Because he was such a beloved entertainer, fans remain just as heartbroken over the loss now as they were 15 years ago. On the 80th anniversary of Pryor’s death, many of these fans have been flocking to social media to share tribute posts and memories of the comedian, keeping Pryor around in spirit even if he’s physically no longer here.
“Born 80 years ago on this day, Dec. 1, 1940, one of the funniest people to ever walk this earth, Richard Pryor,” says one fan, adding a photo of Pryor on stage. “Genius is a word we throw around a lot nowadays, but his talent was transcendent.”
“Richard Pryor would have turned 80 years old today. No one, and I mean no one, was better,” tweets 70s and 80s Retro Rodeo. “Remembering one of the very BEST in Entertainment EVER! Happy Birthday to the late Richard Pryor,” a fan posts on Twitter.
Many other tweets are including famous quotes from Pryor, including one fan tweet that reads, “December 1st, 1940, is the birthday of American comedian Richard Pryor, who once said: ‘I believe the ability to think is blessed. If you can think about a situation, you can deal with it. The big struggle is to keep your head clear enough to think.'”
“‘What I’m saying might be profane, but it’s also profound.’ -Richard Pryor,” quotes another fan.
And another quote tweet states, “‘Two things people throughout history have had in common are hatred and humor. I am proud that I have been able to use humor to lessen people’s hatred.’ — American stand-up comedian, actor & writer #RichardPryor, born today in Peoria, Illinois (1940-2005). Rest in Power Sir…”
Family Feud host and comedian Steve Harvey also got in on the celebration of Richard Pryor’s life and legacy. Posting a photo of himself alongside Pryor, Harvey writes, “Richard Pryor was my greatest comedic influence. When I heard his album in college I knew that’s what I wanted to do and he was by far to me the funniest person to ever live.”
Because his life story is so incredible, there have been multiple efforts in Hollywood to get a Richard Pryor biopic made. At one point, a movie about prior was in the works with Marlon Wayans attached to play a young Pryor. Mike Epps was later in the running for the role before the project again floundered in development hell. This year, the planned biopic once again made some traction when Black-ish creator Kenya Barris was reportedly hired by MGM to write and direct the movie. It remains to be seen if this version will ever make it to theaters.
In any case, it’s very clear that Pryor is still very fondly loved and remembered by fans all across the world. May he continue to rest in peace.
Born 80 years ago on this day, Dec. 1, 1940, one of the funniest people to ever walk this earth, Richard Pryor. Genius is a word we throw around a lot nowadays, but his talent was transcendent. pic.twitter.com/w7pYO9qepy
— Stormin’ Norman (@NormanKelsey) December 1, 2020
— 70s And 80s Retro Rodeo (@TheRetroRodeo) December 1, 2020
Remembering one of the very BEST in Entertainment EVER! Happy Birthday to the late Richard Pryor born December 1st 1940 pic.twitter.com/YlFnQoElDz
— Another day with Jenn! (@ArcelayJen) December 1, 2020
December 1st, 1940, is the birthday of American comedian Richard Pryor, who once said: "I believe the ability to think is blessed. If you can think about a situation, you can deal with it. The big struggle is to keep your head clear enough to think." pic.twitter.com/VhvnvXy3cL
— 🧸Kevin L Nenstiel🎄 (@KLNenstiel) December 1, 2020
“What I'm saying might be profane, but it's also profound.” –Richard Pryor ; December 1, 1940-December 10, 2005.
— Dan (@DanBeThyName) December 1, 2020
— Old School 80s (@OldSchool80s) December 1, 2020
Remembering the legendary Richard Pryor on his birthday (December 1, 1940 – December 10, 2005) pic.twitter.com/iWpdHG6bzp
— Double L must Rock The Bells (@LoveThePuck) December 1, 2020
— Only Film Media (@OnlyFilmMedia) December 1, 2020
— ✨⭐️Nostalgia⭐️✨ (@Dear_Lonely_) December 1, 2020
#fbf Richard Pryor was my greatest comedic influence. When I heard his album in college I knew that's what I wanted to do and he was by far to me the funniest person to ever live. pic.twitter.com/pyvCNxw3N5
— Steve Harvey (@IAmSteveHarvey) November 27, 2020