After a famous singer passes away, it’s a natural response to want to listen to your favorite song of theirs. The same is true for actors and actresses, except instead of a song, it’s a movie or TV show. Or maybe just a scene. After hearing that comedy legend Jerry Stiller had died from natural causes at 92 years old, I immediately went to YouTube and watched my favorite scene of his from Seinfeld. It’s not “serenity now,” or Frank Costanza’s agitated phone call to Jerry (“Mr. Steinbrenner’s here. George is dead. Call me back”), although both of those are incredible, and show how Stiller was a master of comedic-screaming. (I bet Adam Sandler was a student of his work.) It’s a blooper from season eight’s “The Little Kicks,” best known for Elaine’s twisting-jerking dance moves.
But I think of it as the episode where Stiller makes Julia Louis-Dreyfus lose her sh*t.
jerry stiller making JLD break is still one of the funniest things ever pic.twitter.com/i711bpMcEv
— Seinfeld Current Day (@Seinfeld2000) May 11, 2020
All it took for Louis-Dreyfus, one of the most accomplished and decorated sitcom stars ever, to break character was Stiller asking her, “The hell does that mean?” Jason Alexander, too, couldn’t keep it together, rolling off the bench and onto the floor in giggles. But he eventually regained his composure — JLD, not so much. As you can see in the blooper reel above, multiple takes are ruined by Louis-Dreyfus laughing hysterically at Stiller’s threats, although I’d argue, they’re improved with the breaking.
What a one-of-a-kind talent.
The truth is that this happened all the time with Jerry Stiller. He was so funny and such a dear human being. We loved him. RIP Jerry Stiller.https://t.co/kXL14zMKeX
— Julia Louis-Dreyfus (@OfficialJLD) May 11, 2020
Jerry Stiller is survived by his son Ben, who tweeted, “I’m sad to say that my father Jerry Stiller passed away from natural causes. He was a great dad and grandfather, and the most dedicated husband to Anne for about 62 years. He will be greatly missed.”