President Obama said in a statement this morning that he was mourning the loss of actor, writer, producer and director Harold Ramis as his films made him “question authority.”
Ramis died Monday from vasculitis at age 69.
“Michelle and I were saddened to hear of the passing of Harold Ramis, one of America’s greatest satirists, and like so many other comedic geniuses, a proud product of Chicago’s Second City,” Obama said.
“When we watched his movies – from Animal House and Caddyshack to Ghostbusters and Groundhog Day – we didn’t just laugh until it hurt. We questioned authority. We identified with the outsider. We rooted for the underdog,” the president continued. “And through it all, we never lost our faith in happy endings.”
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Harold’s wife, Erica, his children and grandchildren, and all those who loved him, who quote his work with abandon, and who hope that he received total consciousness.”
That’s a reference to one of Bill Murray’s lines in Caddyshack: “So we finish the eighteenth and he’s gonna stiff me. And I say, ‘Hey, Lama, hey, how about a little something, you know, for the effort, you know.’ And he says, ‘Oh, uh, there won’t be any money, but when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness.’ So I got that goin’ for me, which is nice.”
Here’s a fine Ramis clip from later in his career, as the pro-life dad of Seth Rogen in Knocked Up: