'Airplane' Star Leslie Nielsen Dies at 84

Actor Leslie Nielsen died at the age of 84 from complications from pneumonia.

Nov. 29, 2010— -- "Naked Gun" and "Airplane!" actor Leslie Nielsen died at the age of 84 Sunday from complications from pneumonia, his agent said.

Nielsen died just after 5:30 p.m. in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., surrounded by his wife Barbaree and friends, said agent John S. Kelly.

"We are saddened by the passing of beloved actor Leslie Nielsen, probably best remembered as Lt. Frank Drebin in "The Naked Gun" series of pictures, but who enjoyed a more than 60-year career in motion pictures and television," Kelly said in a statement.

The actor was born on Feb. 11, 1926 in Regina, Saskatchewan. Nielsen was married four times and has two daughters from his second marriage.

Before his entrance into acting, Nielsen joined the Royal Canadian Air Force and worked as Calgary radio disc jockey.

He came to Hollywood in the 1950s following more than150 live television drama performances.

His feature film debut, "The Vagabond King" helped to open the doors to other leading roles in films such as "Forbidden Planet," "The Opposite Sex" and "Hot Summer Night."

He also starred in the romantic comedy, "Tammy and the Bachelor" with Debbie Reynolds and played Revolutionary War hero Francis Marion in the Disney series, "The Swamp Fox."

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'Don't Call me Shirley'

While Nielsen's early work revolved around dramatic roles, his signature deadpan delivery led to comedic roles, particularly in the 1980 satire "Airplane" and in "The Naked Gun" comedy series.

In "Airplane!" Nielsen played Alan Rumack, a doctor on board a plane where several passengers and pilots get food poisoning after eating fish for dinner.

Nielsen uttered the line that would later become one of film's most memorable quotes.

When Nielsen's character asked ex-fighter pilot, Ted Striker (played by Robert Hays) if he can fly the aircraft, he replies, "Surely you can't be serious?"

Nielsen as Rumack responds, "I am serious. And don't call me Shirley."

In "The Naked Gun" series, Nielsen played Lt. Frank Drebin, the same character he played on the short-lived series "Police Squad!"

"It didn't belong on TV," Nielsen later said in an interview according to the Associated Press. "It had the kind of humor you had to pay attention to."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.