Stefán Karl Stefánsson, 43, Who Played Robbie Rotten On ‘Lazy Town,’ Has Died

Beloved ‘Lazy Town’ star, Stéfan Karl Stefánsson, has passed away. The 43-year-old, who played Robbie Rotten on the show, had been battling bile duct cancer for the past two years. "Per Stefan's wishes, there will be no funeral. His earthly remains will be scattered in secrecy in a distant ocean,” his wife, Steinunn Olina wrote on Facebook.

Although you may not have seen the show, you may recognize Robbie Rotten from the Lazy Town song “We Are Number One” that became a viral meme in 2016. According to News Cult, the meme surged in popularity when Lazy Town staff set up a GoFundMe page for Stefánsson to help cover the costs of his cancer treatment. When the Internet became aware of the effort, they managed to raise close to $170,000 from spreading remixes and parodies of the song.

For those of you who were not lucky enough to grow up with 'Lazy Town,' the show follows 8-year-old Stephanie on her adventures through the Lazy Town where she tries to motivate the rather inactive population (hence the name ‘Lazy Town’) to engage in physical activity, Stefánsson’s character, Robbie Rotten, the villain in the children’s series, tries to stop Stephanie and her sidekick’s, Sportacus, schemes, preferring to remain lazy instead.

Stefánsson shared updates on his treatment and progress on social media but announced this March that the cancer had returned and this time “was inoperable”, writes BBC. A Turner spokesperson, the company that owned Lazy Town, expressed their condolences. "We are deeply saddened to hear the news of Stefan Karl's passing. He was an original and talented performer who was deeply loved and brought joy to many people's lives. Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time."