Statement from Office of the Provost: Passing of Professor Anne Beatts

The following is a statement Provost Glenn Pfeiffer sent to the Chapman University community on Thursday, April 8.

It is with a very heavy heart that I write to share that Professor Anne Beatts, who taught in our Dodge College of Film and Media Arts, died on Wednesday, April 7. As one of the first writers of the legendary television show, Saturday Night Live, Anne, too was renowned for her sense of humor and ability to make others laugh. During the many years she taught here at Chapman, she shared her extensive experience and comedic gifts with dozens of students.

She was an exceptional teacher, a dedicated colleague, and a highly accomplished TV writer-producer, who won two Emmys as a writer for the original “Saturday Night Live.”  At SNL, Anne and her writing partner, Rosie Shuster, created many of the most memorable characters, such as Todd and Lisa Lupner, Uncle Roy, Laraine Newman’s Child Psychiatrist, Irwin Mainway, and Fred Garvin, Male Prostitute. She was also a creator and producer of the critically-acclaimed CBS sitcom, “Square Pegs,” and co-executive-produced the first year of NBC’s long-running hit series “A Different World.” Her work appeared on Broadway in “Gilda: Live”, and she was honored by the Museum of Television and Radio as one of the medium’s most influential women.

“I’m heartbroken about losing Anne,” said Dean of Dodge College Stephen Galloway. “It’s hard to believe that the vibrant, passionate, funny woman I just spoke to a few days ago is no longer with us. She was a pioneer in so many ways — as the first female editor of the Harvard Lampoon and one of the first women writers on Saturday Night Live. But she wasn’t just the Queen of Comedy; she was also an extraordinary mentor to many of our students. She’ll live on through them.”

Anne is survived by one daughter. Memorial arrangements have not yet been announced. As soon as I find out the details of her memorial service, I will let you know.