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Harold Ramis, Dead at 69

Photo of Sam Adams By Sam Adams | Criticwire February 24, 2014 at 12:56PM

Tributes to the "Groundhog Day" director and "Ghostbusters" star.
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Ramis

Harold Ramis, who as an actor and a writer-director helped define screen comedy for a generation, has died at the age of 69. The Chicago Tribune's Marc Caro has the story:

Harold Ramis was one of Hollywood’s most successful comedy filmmakers when he moved his family from Los Angeles back to the Chicago area in 1996. His career was still thriving, with "Groundhog Day" acquiring almost instant classic status upon its 1993 release and 1984's "Ghostbusters" ranking among the highest-grossing comedies of all time, but the writer-director wanted to return to the city where he’d launched his career as a Second City performer.

"There's a pride in what I do that other people share because I'm local, which in L.A. is meaningless; no one's local," Ramis said upon the launch of the first movie he directed after his move, the 1999 mobster-in-therapy comedy "Analyze This," another hit. "It's a good thing. I feel like I represent the city in a certain way."

Ramis, a longtime North Shore resident, was surrounded by family when he died at 12:53 a.m. from complications of autoimmune inflammatory vasculitis, a rare disease that involves swelling of the blood vessels, his wife Erica Mann Ramis said. He was 69.

Tributes will be pouring in all day, and we'll collect them here as they do. Here's Nathan Rabin's primer on Ramis' career, and a 90-minute interview with the Museum of the Moving Image's David Schwartz from 2009.


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