Comedy legend Norm Macdonald shot a secret comedy special for Netflix that was to be released in the event of his death, and now it’s about to come out.
“One of modern comedy’s greatest talents made one final stand-up special before he passed away — and it’s been kept a secret, until now,” The Hollywood Reporter reported. “Netflix will release the surprise program — Norm Macdonald: Nothing Special‚ on May 30.”
Macdonald died last September at 61-years-old after reportedly battling cancer for nine years.
The report says that he was working on new material for a special with Netflix when he became so ill that he had to be hospitalized in 2020.
“The result was a stand-up special shot in Macdonald’s living room. The actor filmed the entire hour in a single take,” the report said. “As it turned out, Macdonald made it through the medical procedure just fine and the footage was literally tossed in a closet. But Macdonald became very ill a year later, before his special could be properly filmed before an audience.”
Lori Jo Hoekstra, Macdonald’s longtime producing partner, told the publication that Macdonald wanted to get the special on tape just in case his health went south.
“It was his intention to have a special to share if something happened,” Hoekstra said. “He looks great and the material’s fantastic.”
“He ended up getting sicker last August and September, and he remembered he had shot this and asked me to find it so he could watch it,” Hoekstra continued. “He ended up watching it before he passed away.”
The report said that the one-hour special is likely unprecedented in the world of comedy.
“From the various conversations I’ve had within our circle of friends in comedy and producing, no one has heard of any comparison to this [situation] — not even close,” Hoekstra said. “It makes me so happy that I can share it, but also so sad that we can’t share it with him. He didn’t do this for the shock that it exists. He shot it because he loved his material and was so proud of his material. He worked so hard and it really would’ve bothered him to have done all that work and not been able to show everybody. He did it for the stand-up. I just hope people appreciate that he did this.”
This report has been updated to include additional information.
Related: Norm Macdonald Dies At Age 61