Published: Tue, April 17, 2018
Culture&Arts | By Hattie Nash

Night Court Star Harry Anderson Dies

Night Court Star Harry Anderson Dies

Actor Harry Anderson, best known for his role on the hit sitcom "Night Court", died in Asheville, North Carolina Monday.

A statement from the Asheville Police Department reads, "This morning at 6:41 a.m. the Asheville Police Department responded to the home of actor Harry Anderson where he was found deceased".

Foul play wasn't suspected, she said.

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What's impressive about Anderson's transition from Harry the Hat to Night Court judge Harold T. Stone is that he wasn't a master thespian.

He was born in Newport Rhode Island, and when his family moved to Chicago he was introduced to sleight of hand magic.

In 1981 he joined the cast of Saturday Night Live, and landed a role on Cheers in 1982. In 1985, he told People magazine that he used to run a classic street hustle, the shell game, in San Francisco, where, at 21 years old, he had his jaw broken by an opponent who was livid at the game's outcome.

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"'Cheers' was my first acting job, but it was basically the character I had developed on the street", he said.

Anderson has said he never sought to be an actor. He largely left television after Dave's World ended, though he would make sporadic guest appearances from time to time. He even bought a comedy club in New Orleans, a city where he'd once worked as a street magician. And what I want to do is card tricks and magic.' That includes magic shows for corporate clients ("Fifty-five minutes with applause", says Anderson) at $20,000 a pop. "I don't understand why guys have that Don Knotts syndrome of having to be out there".

Following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, he moved to Asheville.

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He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth Morgan.

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