Pee-Wee Herman Actor Paul Reubens Dead At 70 After Private Battle With Cancer

Videos by OutKick

Actor Paul Reubens — better known as 1980s children’s TV star Pee-wee Herman — has died after a private battle with cancer. He was 70 years old.

“Last night we said farewell to Paul Reubens, an iconic American actor, comedian, writer and producer whose beloved character Pee-wee Herman delighted generations of children and adults with his positivity, whimsy and belief in the importance of kindness,” a statement posted to his Facebook page read.

“Paul bravely and privately fought cancer for years with his trademark tenacity and wit. A gifted and prolific talent, he will forever live in the comedy pantheon and in our hearts as a treasured friend and man of remarkable character and generosity of spirit.”

The announcement included a statement from Reubens explaining why he had not previously revealed his diagnosis.

“Please accept my apology for not going public with what I’ve been facing the last six years,” he wrote. “I have always felt a huge amount of love and respect from my friends, fans and supporters. I have loved you all so much and enjoyed making art for you.”

(Photo by Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic)

Reubens gained fame for the creation of his Pee-wee Herman character, a quirky man-child with a red bowtie and an “I know you are, but what am I?” catchphrase.

Pee-wee was originally the star of a stage play. But Reubens gained such a following he landed a movie — Pee-wee’s Big Adventure — in 1985.

That film led to Pee-wee’s Playhouse, a children’s TV show that ran from 1986 until 1991.

Paul Reubens Leaves Behind A Troubled Legacy

His life wasn’t all silliness, fun and games.

In 1991, Reubens pleaded no contest to indecent exposure at an adult movie theater in Sarasota, Fla.

And in 2004, Reubens was sentenced to three years probation after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor obscenity charge involving photographs of minors engaged in sexual conduct.

Still, he managed to land roles in 30 Rock, The Blacklist, Pushing Daisies and Gotham. He also won critical acclaim for his role as a drug-dealing hairdresser in the the Johnny Depp movie Blow.

Written by Amber Harding

Amber is a Midwestern transplant living in Murfreesboro, TN. She spends most of her time taking pictures of her dog, explaining why real-life situations are exactly like "this one time on South Park," and being disappointed by the Tennessee Volunteers.

One Comment

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply