Garry Shandling's spokesman says doctors believe the comedian died from a heart attack.
Then in the 1980s he began to experiment with TV comedy with his first series, "It's Garry Shandling's Show", a Showtime sitcom that called attention to its artificial nature with the actors routinely breaking the fourth wall. Conan shared a clip from the 2006 Emmy Awards show when Conan shared another romantic moment with Shandling.
His death appears sudden and cause of death is unknown.
"I was at a real low point".
"I have to tell you that this is a devastating shock to me and just about everyone I know", an uncharacteristically somber O'Brien told his audience.
The show, which satirized late night television, ran on HBO from 1992 thru 1998, and cemented Shandling's status as a comic genius. "A performer who went on to create incredibly groundbreaking comedy shows that inspired an entire generation of comedians -myself included", O'Brien said at the top of his show.
TMZ's sources said Shandling seemed fine before the heart attack and had been talking to people earlier that morning.
Bob Saget: "To the funniest and brilliant Garry Shandling".
During his career Shandling won three Emmys-he hosted the Grammys four times and the Emmys three times.
Actor Garry Shandling attends an NBA basketball game between the Houston Rockets and the Los Angeles Lakers, Friday, April 6, 2012, in Los Angeles. "He really did care about other people", he continued. "Double bills of Seinfeld and Larry Sanders on BBC2 my highlight of the 90s". "I just don't know how to sum up someone I loved so much who taught me everything I know".