Comedian Bernie Mac dies at 50

Bernie Mac, the Emmy and Golden Globe nominated actor and comedian who worked his way to Hollywood success after an impoverished upbringing on Chicago's South Side, died yesterday at 50.

His film career started with a small role in the 1992 movie Mo' Money. Mac went on to star in the Ocean's Eleven franchise with Brad Pitt and George Clooney, and his turn with Ashton Kutcher in 2005 in Guess Who was a huge hit. He attracted acclaim with his Fox television series The Bernie Mac Show, which ran from 2001 to 2006.

The comedian suffered from sarcoidosis, an inflammatory lung disease. He was recently hospitalised and treated for pneumonia.

Recently, Mac's brand of comedy caused controversy when he was heckled during a surprise appearance at a July fund-raiser for the Democratic presidential candidate, and fellow Chicagoan, Barack Obama.

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