Stand-up comedian Richard Jeni, who was a frequent guest on the Tonight Show and appeared in several films, has died in an apparent suicide.
In the sad and gruesome affair, LAPD stated that a woman called on Saturday and reported her boyfriend had "just shot himself in the face".
Officers found Jeni, 49, alive but fatally wounded in a West Hollywood home. He died later in hospital. While it seems quite apparently the case, Police spokeswoman Norma Eisenman said suicide had not been officially confirmed. An autopsy is due to be performed today.
For those of you who do not know of Richard Jeni, he was born in Brooklyn, New York, and first came to attention in 1990 with a 30-minute showcase, Richard Jeni: The Boy From New York, on the US Showtime channel.
After gaining popularity, he became a regular guest on The Tonight Show during Johnny Carson's reign as host and continued to appear after Jay Leno took over.
Frazer Smith, a fellow comedian who often opened for Jeni, said younger acts looked up to him.
"He was probably one of the best stand-up comedians in the last 50 years," said Smith. "He had tons and tons of material."
In other appearaances, Jeni had small roles in The Mask as Jim Carrey's best friend and several other films including Burn, Hollywood, The Aristocrats, and National Lampoon's Dad's Week Off. Jeni was also a close friend of comedian Chris Rock, appearing in his sitcom Everybody Hates Chris and writing material for Rock's stint hosting the Oscars in 2005.
But he was best known as a stand-up comedian, regularly playing to sold-out crowds at Hollywood's Laugh Factory, where he will be deeply missed.