As the news spread on Monday (November 16) of "Remote Control" host Ken Ober's death, his friends, colleagues and former coworkers began paying tribute to his career and his memory. "Remote Control" helped to launch the careers of Adam Sandler and Denis Leary, and they were among the first to send statements to MTV News.
"Ken Ober was one of the sharpest, quickest, sweetest guys I ever met," Sandler said. "He was always a great friend and I will miss him very much."
Leary echoed those sentiments in his statement. "Kenny Ober was and always will be the quickest wit in the room," he wrote. "He was fall-down funny from the moment he was born — a smart, fast and hilarious human being who made many of us, including myself, laugh until we cried. As the star and host of 'Remote Control,' he was a welcoming ringmaster who helped to kickstart the careers of numerous talents, including Adam Sandler, Colin Quinn and myself. He will be remembered always by each of his friends not only for his massive talent but for his true, deep and enduring friendship."
In an excerpt from his remembrance of Ober, MTV News' Kurt Loder wrote: "Ken was a wonderfully warm and grounded guy — the iconic success he achieved with 'Remote Control' never seemed to go to his head. I stopped by to see him one time in Los Angeles, after the show had run its course, in a little bungalow he was renting up in the hills. He'd moved to Hollywood in search of better prospects himself, and he apparently had considerable success. He also flew back to New York in 2001, for a big MTV 20th-anniversary party at which his old show, of course, loomed large. He was as cheery and upbeat as ever, and it was really good to see him in such high spirits.
"But 'Remote Control' was a once-in-a-lifetime score, and I hope he was proud of what he and his buddies achieved. The show is long gone from the airwaves, but who knows? Maybe it'll be brought back one day. Can there be any more timeless a pop-culture classic? It's terribly sad, and very hard to process, that Ken himself is suddenly gone for good."
MTV Networks President Van Toffler said on Monday: "Ken was a great guy. His personality really brought 'Remote Control' to life, as well as a new style of programming for MTV. We were really flying by the seat of of our pants then, and Ken was the reason it worked."