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Creator / Fred Willard

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"His comic delivery is so natural that I don't think he can prevent it. If Fred Willard was a doctor, it would take him 15 tries to convince you he wasn't kidding about your bone cancer."
Seanbaby on Fred Willard

Frederick Charles Willard (September 18, 1933 – May 15, 2020) was an American actor, comedian, voice actor and writer, best known for his improvisational comedy. He sadly passed away in his sleep from natural causes on May 15, 2020 at the age of 86.

Works with TV Tropes Pages:

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    Film roles 

    Television roles 

    Video game roles 

Tropes that apply to his works include:

  • Cloudcuckoolander: He was well-known for playing characters with a perpetual spaciness to them. His quavering voice certainly helped him in this regard.
  • The Comically Serious: His signature was spouting off inane nonsense with enough straight-faced sincerity to make his characters seem like genuine eccentrics you could actually encounter in real-life rather than affected performances by an actor.
  • Cool Old Guy: He was already well into middle age when he broke out, and his roles made excellent use of his charisma and confidence, making his characters much funnier.
  • Cuckoolander Commentator: He commonly played inept and unqualified event announcers in Christopher Guest's works.
  • Improv: Was known to have been an excellent improviser. According to Christopher Guest, several of Willard's parts in his films were completely improvised; the scripts didn't even include rough outlines for his characters.
  • Nice Guy: As deluded and idiotic as they were, his characters always had his natural warmth and charm, making them impossible not to like.
  • Pigeonholed Actor: His career consisted almost entirely of playing men who were either pompous idiots, Cloudcuckoolanders, or some combination of the two.
  • Production Posse: A regular of Christopher Guest's films.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Several of his characters were excessively proud has-beens or never-weres.
  • So Unfunny, It's Funny: He was a master at delivering terrible jokes and quips that would normally make one groan with such confidence and self-satisfaction that they became hilarious.