Mel Brooks Remembers Late 'Best Friend' Carl Reiner: 'I Loved Him'

"Whether he wrote or performed or he was just your best friend — nobody could do it better," Mel Brooks says of Carl Reiner, who died Monday night at age 98

Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner
Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner. Photo: Frank Trapper/Corbis via Getty

Carl Reiner will be missed by many, especially his dear friend Mel Brooks.

"I met him in 1950 when he joined Sid Caesar on Your Show of Shows and we’ve been best friends ever since,” Brooks, 94, says in a statement. “I loved him.”

The legendary stand-up comedian, actor, director, producer, writer and singer died Monday night at his home in Beverly Hills, California, of natural causes. His assistant Judy Nagy confirmed the news. He was 98.

"Carl was a giant, unmatched in his contributions to entertainment. He created comedy gems like The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Jerk and Where’s Poppa?” says Brooks.

“When we were doing The 2000 Year Old Man together," Brooks recalls, "there was no better straight man in the world.”

The pals remained close for 70 years. According to the Guardian, every evening Brooks and Reiner ate dinner together and watched Jeopardy!

Carl Reiner
Carl Reiner. Mark Mainz/Getty

After the duo first collaborated in the 1950s, Reiner and Brooks worked so well together that they decided to partner up as a comedy duo in The Steve Allen Show, which gained so much popularity that the routine expanded into a series of five comedy albums and an animated TV special.

"Whether he wrote or performed or he was just your best friend — nobody could do it better. He’ll be greatly missed," says Reiner.

He adds: "A tired cliché in times like this, but in Carl Reiner’s case it’s absolutely true. He will be greatly missed."

Related Articles