“Monty Python” writer and actor Neil Innes has died at age 75, his agent has confirmed.
The comedian and musician died of natural causes Sunday night, agent Nigel Morton said.
Innes was known for his work with the British comedy group “Monty Python” and “The Bonzo Dog Band.”
The Bonzos were reunited one last time only a few weeks ago for a victory dinner. Our thoughts and prayers are with Yvonne and the family at this sad time. RIP to the Urban Spaceman himself, the great Neil Innes xxxx pic.twitter.com/zWKmCh4qSW
— The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band (@BonzoDogBanned) December 30, 2019
A statement released on behalf of his family Monday said: “It is with deep sorrow and great sadness that we have to announce the death of Neil James Innes on December 29, 2019.
“We have lost a beautiful, kind, gentle soul whose music and songs touched the heart of everyone and whose intellect and search for truth inspired us all.
“He died of natural causes quickly without warning and, I think, without pain.”
Innes wrote songs for the popular film “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.”
Innes appeared in “Monty Python’s Life of Brian” and toured the U.K. and Canada with the group.
He was also a member of the band “The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band,” later renamed the “Bonzo Dog Band,” whose song “I’m the Urban Spaceman” won him an Ivor Novello award.
Colleagues have been paying tributes to Innes on Twitter, including the prominent British actor Mark Gatiss, who fondly wrote, “Sweet dreams, sweet idiot.”
Neil Innes has gone. As a Python-obsessed teen I saw him at Darlington Arts Centre & missed my bus home to catch his brilliance. I used to record ‘The Innes Book of Records’ on C-60s & marvel at his talent. I still hum ‘I like Cezanne, says Anne’. Sweet dreams, sweet idiot.
— Mark Gatiss (@Markgatiss) December 30, 2019
Former “Python” star John Cleese called Innes a “very sweet man, much too nice for his own good.”
Utterly dismayed to hear about Neil Innes. Right out of the blue…
A very sweet man, much too nice for his own good
Lovely writer and performer. When he worked with Python on our stage show, I listened every night to “How sweet to be an Idiot” on the tannoy
— John Cleese (@JohnCleese) December 30, 2019
“Veep” writer Simon Blackwell called Innes’ death a “terrible loss.”
Incredibly sad to hear that Neil Innes has gone. The Innes Book Of Records was one of the most beautiful, innovative and funny shows I’ve ever seen. The Rutles’ songs, of course, beyond perfection. What a talent and what a horrible loss.
— Simon Blackwell (@simonblackwell) December 30, 2019
Innes is survived by his wife, Catherine Hilton, and their three sons, Miles, Luke and Barney.
Our thoughts are with the family during this difficult time.
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