Andy Kaufman Alive Or Dead? How And Why He Faked His Death As A Hoax

Patrick Frye

Is Andy Kaufman alive or dead? The answer is "alive" according to brother Michael, who claims Kaufman faked his own death as a hoax.

As previously reported by The Inquisitr, Andy Kaufman's death hoax was announced by a woman claiming to be his daughter.

If Andy Kaufman were alive today, he'd be age 64. Official records say he died in 1984 from lung cancer, but Michael Kaufman found an essay years ago in which his brother detailed plans on he might fake his own death.

Al Parinello, a lifelong friend of the comedian who produces the Andy Kaufman awards show at the Gotham Comedy Club, says he "witnessed the entire thing and I can tell you without a doubt this was not a prank" by Michael, who is described as "accountant-like" and not prone to making or condoning pranks.

But you might wonder how could Andy Kaufman fake his own death? Parinello recalls how he attended Kaufman's funeral and saw the body:

"It was a closed casket. Only the family [and myself] actually saw the body. [But] Andy was an aficionado of meditation. One of the things Andy was taught at the highest level was a process where one could slow down his breath to a point where you can literally fool anyone that you may be dead when in fact you are alive. So that's the one thing that Michael checked for. It was a very formal affair -- it wasn't as though they could prod or anything else. They were simply in the room and saw Andy laying in a coffin."

The letter also asked Michael to keep the Andy Kaufman death hoax a secret until their father died. Stanley Kaufman passed away this July and shortly later he received a phone call from the woman claiming to be Andy Kaufman's daughter.

Still, another witness named Ed Cavanagh, who is showroom manager at the Gotham Comedy Club, says he's not sure if a death hoax is being perpetrated against the family of Andy Kaufman:

"You could see by the look on [Michael's] face that it had an emotional impact on him. I don't know whether somebody is perpetrating something on [Michael] or not. I'm truly 50-50 on this one."

Do you think Andy Kaufman is alive or dead?