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Norman Lear 1
Norman Lear 1
Norman Lear 1

Television

TV Pioneer Norman Lear Dies at 101

NOTE: This article is 6 months old and may not include the most recent information.

Iconic TV producer and writer Norman Lear has passed away at the age of 101. Lear died of natural causes at his home in Los Angeles on Tuesday, his publicist confirmed.

Lear revolutionized American television in the 1970s with groundbreaking sitcoms like “All in the Family,” “Sanford and Son,” “Maude,” and “The Jeffersons” among others. These shows tackled controversial political and social issues like racism, abortion, the Vietnam War, and more. Despite the risky subject matter, Lear’s shows were hugely popular, ranking #1 and #2 at times.

Before turning to TV production, Lear had established himself as a top comedy writer in Hollywood. He earned an Oscar nomination in 1968 for co-writing the film “Divorce American Style.”

Throughout his decades-long career, Lear created a number of memorable characters like Archie Bunker, Fred Sanford, and Maude Findlay. His work earned many Emmys and critical acclaim. In 2017, he was honored at the Kennedy Center Honors.

Beyond television, Lear was also an influential liberal political activist. He founded the advocacy organization People for the American Way in 1981. Lear was known for his progressive philanthropy as well.

At age 101, Lear had an incredibly long, influential career shaping American comedy and culture. He leaves behind his wife Lyn Davis Lear, six children, and four grandchildren. Lear was preceded in death by two previous wives.

Lear’s family has asked for privacy as they mourn the iconic producer, writer, activist, and philanthropist. But his impact on television and society will long be remembered.

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Check out the playlist of some of the most iconic theme songs from Norman Lear TV shows here.

Trevor Decker
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