NEW YORK -- Did Andy Kaufman get away with his greatest stunt?
The Internet erupted Thursday following reports that Kaufman's younger brother, Michael, suggested the performance artist may have faked his 1984 death.
The reports further fueled long-held conspiracy theories that the comedian's death from a rare form of cancer at age 35 was a hoax.
In a tale almost as outlandish as his brother's skits, Michael Kaufman told an audience at a New York comedy club Monday night that he received a letter from his brother 15 years after his death. He then introduced a woman he said was his brother's daughter born in 1989.
Michael Kaufman explained he was going through Andy's writings many years ago and found a reference to him "talking about faking his death," including the line, "I will reappear." It said Andy's reappearance would take place at a restaurant on Christmas Eve in 1999.
When Michael Kaufman went to the restaurant, he said, a parking attendant gave him a letter purportedly from his brother. Michael Kaufman read the letter to the audience at Monday's annual Andy Kaufman Awards show. Video of the reading was obtained by CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper."
"It was too much pressure to be Andy Kaufman. I just wanted to be Andy," Michael Kaufman read. "I think that's why I got sick. I had to change completely and quickly. I'm extremely very happily married with the most wonderful wife in the whole wide world and with the two greatest kids: a 10-year-old daughter and a son who is 8."
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