Garry Marshall Dead: ‘Pretty Woman’ Director and ‘Happy Days’ Creator Was 81

Garry Marshall
Garry Marshall on February 1, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. Mark Sullivan/WireImage

Garry Marshall, a legendary figure in TV and film who created such hit shows as Happy Days and directed movies including Pretty Woman, died at age 81 on Tuesday, July 19. 

He died from complications of pneumonia following a stroke at a hospital in Burbank, California, according to his rep. His sister, actress and director Penny Marshall, also confirmed his passing to CBS News.

Numerous celebrities took to Twitter to pay their respects, including Happy Days alum Henry Winkler, who tweeted, "Thank you for my professional life. Thank you for your loyalty, friendship and generosity." 

Marshall got his start in entertainment by writing jokes for stand-up comedians in the 1950s, which led to a role as a writer on shows such as The Tonight Show With Jack Paar, The Dick Van Dyke Show and The Lucy Show.

The Bronx native went on to create the seminal sitcom Happy Days, a generation-defining comedy that made stars of cast members Winkler and Ron Howard. It launched in January 1974 and ran for 11 seasons.

Marshall also created the Happy Days spinoffs Laverne and Shirley, which costarred his sister Penny, and Mork and Mindy, which provided a breakthrough role for Robin Williams as the oddball alien Mork.

He was an accomplished film director as well, and perhaps his most beloved movie is 1990's Pretty Woman, which helped turn Julia Roberts into a household name. He also helmed Beaches, OverboardThe Princess Diaries, Valentine's Day and New Year's Eve. His most recent film was Mother's Day, which starred Roberts, Kate Hudson and Jennifer Aniston, and was released in April.

Marshall directed a number of theatrical productions, along with being an actor in his own right, counting recurring roles on CBS' Murphy Brown and HBO's Louie to his name. He was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1997 and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Barbara, and three children, including Scott Marshall, a film director.

Celebrities' tweets are below.

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