The Seinfeld and Jurassic Park actor Wayne Knight has spoken out on Twitter after a rumour spread among his fans on Sunday night that he had died.
Posting a message from his verified Twitter account to say “I am alive!”, the 58-year-old comedian was able to see the funny side despite claims he had died in a car crash.
The actor, who played Newman in Seinfeld and was eaten by a dilophosaurus in the 1993 Steven Spielberg classic, was initially left open to the unfounded speculation having not tweeted since 27 February.
But he took to Twitter on Sunday put the rumours to bed.
He tweeted: “Some of you will be glad to hear this, others strangely disappointed, but….I am alive and well!
“Does someone have to DIE to trend? Geez! Thanks for all the love everybody. I didn’t know you cared. Glad to be breathing!”
Knight added that his family had been “shocked” until he was able to refute the rumours, and passed on his condolences to a woman “who actually died in my ‘supposed’ accident”.
He later joked: “Thanks to the small town of new followers who came onboard just to tell me they’re glad I didn’t kick! I feel good about the result as well.”
Knight is only the latest in a long string of celebrities to be subjected to the phenomenon of the internet death hoax.
In December last year, fans of the Arctic Monkeys were left outraged after the band’s frontman was caught up in similar rumours and the hashtag #RIPAlexTurner started trending on Twitter.
And that same month the actual death of Fast & Furious star Paul Walker sparked a further death hoax of its own, with people reporting the passing of comedian Eddie Murphy.