Paul Reubens’ cause of death has been revealed following his death in July.
According to his death certificate obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, the actor died from acute hypoxic respiratory failure. The condition occurs when the respiratory system cannot provide enough oxygen to the body.
Reubens died aged 70 in Los Angeles on July 30, as confirmed by his representatives at the time. As noted in the original statement, the actor was privately battling two types of cancer in the years prior to his death.
“Last night we said farewell to Paul Reubens, an iconic American actor, comedian, writer and producer whose beloved character Pee-wee Herman delighted generations of children and adults with his positivity, whimsy and belief in the importance of kindness,” the statement read at the time.
“Paul bravely and privately fought cancer for years with his trademark tenacity and wit. A gifted and prolific talent, he will forever live in the comedy pantheon and in our hearts as a treasured friend and man of remarkable character and generosity of spirit.”
Reubens originally created the character of Pee-wee Herman while performing with the Los Angeles comedy troupe The Groundlings in 1978. He later went onto play the character in a number of big screen outings, including 1985’s Pee-wee’s Big Adventure and Big Top Pee-wee.
The character transitioned to television on Pee-wee’s Playhouse on CBS, which ran from 1986 to 1991.
The actor also made appearances in a number of projects, including Batman Returns, Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Blow, 30 Rock and Saturday Night Live.
Reubens was also at the centre of several controversies. In 1991, he was arrested for indecent exposure at an adult movie theatre in Florida.
Later in 2002, he was arrested and charged with misdemeanour possession of obscene material improperly depicting a child under the age of 18 in sexual conduct. The child pornography charges were later dropped, with Reubens pleading guilty to a charge of obscenity.
In 2016, Reubens reprised his role of Pee-wee Herman in the Netflix film Pee-wee’s Big Holiday, which was the last time he portrayed the character.
Following his death, a number of stars paid tribute including Conan O’Brien, David Hasselhoff and Jonathan Ross.