Emmy award-winning producer J. Michael Mendel has passed away today at the age of 54.
A spokesperson for Adult Swim, the US television network that broadcasts Rick and Morty, said in a statement: “All of us at Adult Swim are devastated by the untimely passing of Mike Mendel. Mike was the heart of the Rick and Morty production family, his fantastic talent and wit will be sorely missed.
“Mike was a universally respected Emmy-winning producer with over 25 years in the industry, who guided and supported a generation of artists, writers and creators and his absence will be felt by the entire community. Our deepest condolences go out to his family, friends and colleagues during this difficult time.”
Mendell was a producer on The Simpsons from its first-ever episode on The Tracy Ullman Show back in 1989 up until 1999. In his time at The Simpsons, he won three Emmy awards (1995, 97 & 98)
Mendel was also a line producer on Adult Swim’s smash hit Rick and Morty since its debut in 2013. He won an Emmy for his work on the show in 2018.
As well as his award-winning work in animation Mendell was also a production assistant on the classic Tom Hanks film Big and associate producer on the Tom Cruise hit Jerry Maguire
Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roiland wrote on Twitter :
J. Michael Mendel career has had a lasting effect on most of our lives. From the Simpsons to Rick and Morty, Mendel as been entertaining geeks across the generations.