Anne Meara, Comedian, Star Of ‘Stiller & Meara’ And Mother To Ben Stiller, Dies At 85
Anne Meara, comedic legend, half of “Stiller & Meara” and mother to Ben Stiller, has died at the age of 85.
Meara’s comedic career spanned decades, beginning in the 1960s, when she and her husband, Jerry Stiller, formed the comedy team Stiller & Meara. “Jerry started us being a comedy team. He always thought I would be a great comedy partner. At that time in my life, I disdained comedians,” Meara said in 2008.
Together, they became fan favorites on The Ed Sullivan Show, but the duo took some time off from their act in the ‘70s to pursue solo acting careers. Meara appeared on multiple television shows, including Archie Bunker’s Place, The Love Boat and Alf. She also continued to work with her husband, and later her son, Ben Stiller, in films and television shows. In fact, Meara was a guest star on The King of Queens, where Stiller was a regular, and their characters married in the sitcom’s series finale in 2007. Stiller and Meara also starred in a short webseries produced by their son called “Stiller and Meara.”
Meara died on Saturday, May 23, the Stiller family confirmed in a statement. “The Stiller family is deeply saddened to share the beloved Anne Meara passed away last night at the age of 85. She is survived by her husband and partner in life Jerry Stiller. The two were married for 61 years and worked together almost as long… Anne’s memory lives on in the hearts of daughter Amy, son Ben, her grandchildren, her extended family and friends, and the millions she entertained as an actress, writer and comedienne,” read the statement.
Ben Stiller also commented on Twitter, thanking everyone for their condolences. “Thank you so much for all the kind words about Anne. All of us in our family feel so lucky to have had her in our lives,” he wrote.
Thank you so much for all the kind words about Anne. All of us in our family feel so lucky to have had her in our lives.
— Ben Stiller (@RedHourBen) May 25, 2015
A photo posted by Ben Stiller (@benstiller) on
Hollywood Remembers Anne Meara
Many of Meara’s admirers and former co-stars took to Twitter to express their condolences, including fellow comedians, Billy Crystal and Sarah Silverman, who called meeting Meara “a life highlight.”
I had the honor of meeting Anne Meara a few times. It was a life highlight. RIP pic.twitter.com/eVDlHhvmFJ
— Sarah Silverman (@SarahKSilverman) May 25, 2015
Sad to hear that Anne Meara passed. Truly funny comedienne and life partner of Jerry Stiller. Sending love to Ben and family.
— Billy Crystal (@BillyCrystal) May 25, 2015
So sad to hear about the loss of Anne Meara. I always loved her in everything she did.
— Jim Gaffigan (@JimGaffigan) May 25, 2015
Rest in peace Anne Meara. Loved her. pic.twitter.com/mX0IN13IKI
— bob saget (@bobsaget) May 25, 2015
Stiller and Meara have been a wonderful presence in comedy my whole life. Now Anne Meara is gone, and I salute her.
— Steve Martin (@SteveMartinToGo) May 24, 2015
I was lucky enough to know Anne Meara personally, and I’m very saddened by her passing. She was wonderful. Love to her family. #RIPAnne
— Andy Richter (@AndyRichter) May 24, 2015
I did 2 films with Anne Meara, a lovely, gracious & Funny Lady. We lost one of the Good Ones! RIP Ms Anne.
— Samuel L. Jackson (@SamuelLJackson) May 25, 2015
Anne Meara was a wonderfully talented and gracious lady. #itsmy2cents
— Larry King (@kingsthings) May 25, 2015
— Sarah Michelle (@SarahMGellar) May 25, 2015
Aww man….RIP to a national treasure Anne Meara. She was timelessly funny.
— josh groban (@joshgroban) May 24, 2015