Danny Leiner, ‘Harold & Kumar’ and ‘Dude, Where’s My Car?’ Director, Dies

Director died after “long illness,” according to colleague

danny leiner
Danny Leiner in 2005 (Photo credit: Scott Gries/Getty Images)

Danny Leiner, the director of stoner comedies including “Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle” and “Dude, Where’s My Car?,” has died.

Leiner passed away late Thursday night, an individual close to Leiner told TheWrap.

Producer Ross Putman, who produced the 2014 “The Young Kieslowski” with Leiner, announced Leiner’s passing on Facebook.

“Danny was one of the producers with me on the first real film I ever made; he was not only gracious in sharing the job with some newbies just getting their sea legs, but taught us a great deal in the process,” Putman wrote. “And we collaborated a few times after that, including on the film I just finished–which he helped champion for years.”

A graduate of SUNY Purchase, Leiner’s first feature film was the 1996 comedy “Layin’ Low,” starring Jeremy Piven and Edie Falco. His next feature “Dude, Where’s My Car?” in 2000 with Ashton Kutcher and Seann William Scott grossed $73.2 million at the box office. He then directed “Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle” in 2004, which spawned two sequels.

Leiner also directed episodes of “Freaks & Geeks,” “Gilmore Girls,” “The Office,” “Arrested Development” and “The Sopranos.” The last film he directed was the 2009 comedy “Balls Out: Gary the Tennis Coach,” reuniting him with his “Dude” star Seann William Scott.

Collider first reported the news.