There's always been a thin line between comedy and tragedy — and when one of comedy's greatest writers and directors dies, there is such a strange combination of sadness and laughter. Harold Ramis, a most gifted comedic artist tragically passed away earlier today at the age of 69 from an autoimmune disorder. As friends and colleagues of Harold Ramis mourn his loss, his great body of work will be dearly remembered. His most famous films like Ghostbusters, Caddyshack, Groundhog Day, National Lampoon's Vacation, and Animal House have left a legacy filled with some of the most iconic comedic performances, characters, and moments in cinematic history.
And now the laughter in Ramis' films will be bittersweet. Not only was Ramis an incredibly gifted writer and director, he was deeply loved and respected by his peers. Like many of the actors who appeared in his films, Ramis was an alum of Chicago's famed Second City. And like many writers and directors who trained and worked in Chicago, Ramis' work was filled with smart humor, big characters, and lots of heart.
Many of Ramis' friends and admirers have taken to Twitter to mourn his passing and share their favorite memories and projects of the late, great director. And whenever anyone asks the question, "Who ya gonna call?" many of us will think of Ramis and his vast contributions to film, comedy, and our collective cultural lexicon. Here's how comedians and actors have reacted to Ramis' early passing with equal parts good humor and deep respect: