Playwright and Screenwriter Neil Simon Dead at 91

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"No playwright in Broadway's long and raucous history has so dominated the boulevard as the softly astringent Simon", The New Yorker's John Lahr wrote in 2010. Sources tell TMZ, Simon died Sunday morning at 1 AM ET after being on life support. There was often little quality control, especially when he worked with weaker directors in both theater and film, and it could be argued that each incarnation of a Simon play was inferior to the last until finally the material was stripped down to such lame stunts as a female Odd Couple and a black Barefoot.

Much of his work, peppered with witty one-liners, explored the everyday struggles of the middle-classes and inter-family conflict, influenced by his troubled upbringing during the Great Depression.

A member of the famed "Your Show of Shows" writing staff for Sid Caesar, Simon was an entertainment mainstay for more than six decades. 1991's "Lost in Yonkers" was also greatly celebrated, winning a Drama Desk Award, a Tony Award and a Pulitzer Prize.

Playwright and Broadway actor Harvey Fierstein paid tribute to Simon.

Marvin Neil Simon was born on July 4, 1927, in the New York City borough of the Bronx, son of Irving, a garment salesman, and Mamie Simon.

"When I was a kid, I climbed up on a stone ledge to watch an outdoor movie of Charlie Chaplin", Simon once told Life magazine.

Evans said he gave Simon a kidney in 2004.

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Screenwriter Neil Simon at the Paramount Studios lot in Hollywood, California April 6, 1998.

"The phrase "odd couple" is now used in so many different contexts". He wrote more than 40 plays that were amusing, moving and immensely popular - sometimes shifting from slapstick to melodrama with the turn of a phrase. "Laughter on the 23rd Floor". When it's 20 in NY, it's 72 in Los Angeles.

"The Odd Couple" - a comedy about a messy sportswriter Oscar and fastidious photographer Felix, whose troubled marriages bring them together as roommates - is still an American classic today.

"Chapter Two", for example, dealt with a writer whose first wife had died, trying to open himself to love a new woman.

Prolific American playwright Neil Simon has died at age 91. In other cases, the movie came first, as when he adapted his 1977 film, "The Goodbye Girl", into a 1993 play.

In 1991, Simon achieved the highest honor in USA drama, winning the Pulitzer Prize for "Lost in Yonkers", an autobiographical comedy about a mother and her daughter that was his last big splash on Broadway. Simon married his fourth wife, actress Elaine Joyce, in 1999.