Actor Willie Garson passed away this week at the age of 57.
Survived by his adoptive son Nathen, Garson was beloved by many in Hollywood and was probably most known for his role as Stanford Blatch, the gay best friend and confidant of Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) in Sex and the City. Garson was filming scenes for HBO Max's upcoming SATC reboot/spinoff series And Just Like That at the time of his passing.
"Willie Garson was in life, as on screen, a devoted friend and a bright light for everyone in his universe," an HBO rep said in a statement. "He created one of the most beloved characters from the HBO pantheon and was a member of our family for nearly 25 years. We are deeply saddened to learn of his passing and extend our sincere condolences to his family and loved ones."
Here's how Garson's co-stars, industry colleagues, and loved ones are paying tribute to their late friend:
"I first met Willie in 1995 on the spooky nighttime set of The X-Files," Kristin Davis wrote on Instagram, recalling how she and Garson first met. "He immediately made me laugh. Little did I know that we would have the joy of sharing Sex and the City + And Just Like That together. Willie is beloved by our entire community. He was smarter and funnier than you ever would have imagined. We are bereft without him."
She continued: "But I really want to pay tribute to his fearless commitment to single fatherhood. We spoke about being single parents through adoption often. And nothing gave him more joy and pride than his son Nathen. Nathen’s strength and wisdom beyond his years are evident in his beautiful tribute to his dad. The outpouring of love is earned dear Willie. I am thankful for all of the time we had and grateful that so much of your bright light is on film forever. Maybe we can do our podcast the next time around? We love you forever."
"So deeply, deeply sad we have lost @Willie.Garson," queer Sex and the City lead Cynthia Nixon wrote on Instagram. "We all loved him and adored working with him. He was endlessly funny on-screen and in real life. He was a source of light, friendship and show business lore. He was a consummate professional — always.
"My heart goes out to his son, @Nathen_Garson," she continued, extending her condolences to Garson's son. "Nathen, I hope you know how much he loved you and how proud he was to be your dad."
"I couldn’t have had a more brilliant TV partner," Mario Cantone, who played Stanford's partner Anthony on Sex and the City, wrote on Twitter in a touching tribute. "I’m devastated and just overwhelmed with sadness. Taken away from all of us way soon. You were a gift from the gods. Rest my sweet friend. I love you."
"Willie Willie Willie. I’m absolutely heartbroken you’re gone," out Glee star and Garson's friend Kevin McHale tweeted. "Your presence filled every room you were in. Your generosity with your time and your heart for me and my friends and family was always appreciated more than you could’ve known. Love you, Willie."
"Willie. I don’t understand. And it’s not fair," Garson's White Collar costar and out actor Matt Bomer wrote in his tribute on Instagram. "This past year, you taught me so much about courage and resilience and love. I still haven’t wrapped my head around a world without you in it — where I can’t call you when I need to laugh, or be inspired. The last thing you did when we said goodbye was pull down your mask (I hate covid), smile, and wink at me. I know that it wasn’t reflective of the pain you were going through, but it was indicative of everything you were and are to me: some one who lifted me up, who made me better, and who always, always made me smile."
"This also reminded me how strong our White Collar family is. We were all there for Willie, and for each other. I love you forever Willie Garson. You live on in our hearts and minds always: and your White Collar family is always here for Nathen. Save a place for me, because you know I want to be at your table up there."
"I love you so much papa," Garson's son Nathen wrote on Instagram. "Rest In Peace and I’m so glad you got to share all your adventures with me and were able to accomplish so much. I’m so proud of you. I will always love you, but I think it’s time for you to go on an adventure of your own. You’ll always be with me. Love you more than you will ever know and I’m glad you can be at peace now. You always were the toughest and funniest and smartest person I’ve known. I’m glad you shared you’re love with me. I’ll never forget it or lose it."