Hollywood remembers Norman Lear

An outpouring of tributes have come in for the titan of television.

Hollywood is honoring Norman Lear. In the wake of his passing, various celebrities, artists and institutions have taken to social media and beyond to pay tribute to one of the biggest names in television.

As theGrio previously reported, the writer, director, and producer behind some of the biggest shows in television history passed away this week at 101. Known for his trailblazing work in representation, Lear brought countless impactful and foundational series to television, including hits like “Maude,” “All in the Family,” “Good Times,” “Sanford and Son” and more. Lee’s legacy and impact on the industry were felt by many, with numerous tributes citing how he directly helped shape the television landscape today.

2020 Winter TCA Tour - Day 7
Norman Lear, executive producer of “One Day at a Time,” speaks during the Pop TV segment of the 2020 Winter TCA Press Tour at The Langham Huntington, Pasadena on Jan. 13, 2020, in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

Allen Media Group founder, chairman and CEO Byron Allen shared a statement in the wake of Lear’s passing, saying that he “changed the world for the better” with his work. “He used his enormous talent to entertain us, enlighten us, and bring us all together through the common bond of laughter,” the statement reads.

“Our friendship and his mentorship inspires me every day, and always will until the end of time,” the statement continues. “Rest in Greatness!!!” Lear was one of the first recipients of a theGrio Award back in 2022, earning “The Champion Icon” award for his work.

Allen Media Group is the parent company of theGrio.

GLAAD President & CEO Sarah Kate Ellis also shared a statement following Lear’s passing, highlighting his work to bring LGBTQ+ representation to the screen. The statement reads, “Norman Lear was a true pioneer whose legacy will forever be connected to including LGBTQ characters on television when no one else would. With storylines on ‘All in the Family,’ ‘Maude,’ ‘The Jeffersons,’ the new ‘One Day at a Time,’ and the upcoming ‘Clean Slate’ starring Laverne Cox, Lear humanized the LGBTQ community for the millions of people who tuned in to watch his shows. Norman Lear made it a priority to champion LGBTQ creators and he pushed Hollywood to follow in his groundbreaking footsteps.”


Tyler Perry took to Instagram with a tribute to Lear, sharing a photo of the two of them. In the post, Perry recalled a lunch the two of them shared where Perry was able to tell Lear how he “helped save” Perry’s life. He wrote, “Just before I left, I asked, ‘At 100 years old what are you looking forward to?’ Without any hesitation, he said, ‘Tomorrow.'”

Viola Davis shared a tribute on Instagram as well, writing that Lear “completely changed the face of television.” The Academy Award winner wrote, “You understood that humor and pathos exist on the same playing field. You were a bastion of inclusivity. The talent you discovered was unparalleled. You left something ‘in’ us, sir, and THAT is eternal. May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest. You did GOOD!! 

On X, formerly known as Twitter, celebrities shared their reactions to his passing. Creator and star of the hit ABC series “Abbott Elementary” Quinta Brunson wrote “My Goat. What a life. Rest well, Norman Lear.”

Steven Canals, co-creator of the groundbreaking FX series “Pose” wrote, “I never introduced myself to Norman Lear, but was in the same room as him twice. Both times he spoke, and his words were profound. He talked about: creating art that challenges & taking risks. Thank you, sir, for creating indelible stories that inspired me as a boy & as an adult. We all benefit from your legacy.”

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