Actor, Comedian AJ Johnson Dead at 56

He was best known for role in 'Friday'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 20, 2021 2:57 PM CDT

(Newser) – Ice Cube says he is saddened by the death of Friday co-star Anthony "AJ" Johnson. A rep for the 56-year-old comedian and actor confirmed the death to Fox. "Our BH Talent family is saddened about the loss of an amazing iconic legend in comedy," said LyNea Bell. Johnson, who played crack addict Ezal in 1995's Friday, also appeared in movies including Menace II Society, Lethal Weapon 3 and Player's Club, NPR reports. His first major role was in 1990's House Party.

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"He has left with us amazing memories of his laughter, dynamic acting skills, but most of all his enormous personality and heart of gold," Bell said. No cause of death was disclosed. TMZ reports that Johnson's nephew says he "was found lifeless in a store earlier this month in Los Angeles and rushed to a hospital."

Johnson—son of the founder of the Black Stuntmen's Association—had a standup career that took off after his House Party role. He also appeared in TV shows including Moesha and Malcolm & Eddie. "Sad to wake up to the news about AJ Johnson passing away," Ice Cube tweeted. "Naturally funny dude who was straight outta Compton at the same time." He is survived by his wife Lexis and three children, CNN reports. (Read more obituary stories.)

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