Actor, screenwriter and director Harold Ramis has died aged 69.
The United Talent Agency confirmed that Ramis, best known for starring in the Ghostbusters films, died at home in the early hours of this morning in his native Chicago.
Ramis played bespectacled Ghostbuster Dr Egon Spengler in the films. He also wrote the screenplay for Caddyshack and wrote and directed 90s classic Groundhog Day.
More recently he had directed several episodes of the American version of The Office.
Bill Murray paid idiosyncratic tribute to Harold Ramis. The comedy pair worked together several times, most famously appearing together in Ghostbusters.
Murray told Time Magazine:
Comedians from both sides of the Atlantic joined other stars from his films as they paid tribute to Ramis, died from complications arising from auto-immune inflammatory vasculitis.
Actresses Elizabeth Hurley and Cindy Morgan who both worked with Ramis also took to Twitter to remember him:
Pictures and bunches of flowers were also reportedly left outside the 'Ghostbusters firehouse' in New York':
Born in Chicago Ramis got his start in comedy in 1969 at Chicago’s famed Second City improvisational theatre troupe, while still working as Associate Editor at on the jokes page of Playboy Magazine.
Ramis’ Hollywood breakthrough came in 1978 when he co-wrote the blockbuster comedy National Lampoon’s Animal House. He went on to co-write Stripes (1981), Ghostbusters (1984) and Ghostbusters II (1989), films in which he also co-starred. Ramis co-wrote and made his directorial debut with Caddyshack (1980), followed by National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983). He also co-wrote and executive produced Back to School (1986), co-wrote, produced and directed Groundhog Day (1993) and Bedazzled (2000).
In 1999 he co-wrote and directed Analyze This, which starred Billy Crystal and Robert DeNiro, and later its sequel Analyze That (2001).
Ramis' most recent offering, Year One, starring Jack Black and Michael Cera, was released in 2009.