Playwright Neil Simon, who died Sunday at age 91, was a prolific writer, whose talent for writing funny dialogue and memorable screenplays began in 1961. The works he created were diverse, but here are some of his signature works:
The Odd Couple
The Tony Award-winning play debuted in 1965 and was a memorable 1968 film starring Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon, but the television series from 1970 to 1975 elevated the work to iconic status. Jack Klugman played messy sportswriter Oscar Madison, while Tony Randall played neat freak Felix Unger. Classic.
Barefoot in the Park
The 1963 play was Simon’s first blockbuster work that established him as a star playwright. Robert Redford and Elizabeth Ashley starred in the romantic comedy on Broadway, and Redford reprised his role on film, starring with Jane Fonda in 1967. The play closed after 1,530 performances and was Simon’s longest-running hit on Broadway.
Lost in Yonkers
This 1991 play earned Simon a Pulitzer Prize for Drama and won a Tony Award for Best Play. The story was set in Brooklyn, New York, during World War II, and ran for 780 performances.
The Sunshine Boys
Debuting in 1972, the play featured two former partners in vaudeville who no longer spoke to each other. One partner reluctantly agrees to reunite with the other for a television special about the history of comedy. The play was adapted into a 1975 film starring George Burns and Walter Matthau. Burns won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
Come Blow Your Horn
This was Simon’s first solo play, which debuted in 1961. Simon reportedly rewrote the script more than two dozen times.
Other notable Simon plays include “Biloxi Blues,” “The Goodbye Girl” and “Plaza Suite.”