SpongeBob Squarepants creator Stephen Hillenburg dies aged 57
He had worked on the show since 1999.
Stephen Hillenburg, famous for creating Nickelodeon animation SpongeBob SquarePants, has died aged 57.
The news comes after he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis last year.
"We are incredibly saddened by the news that Steve Hillenburg has passed away following a battle with ALS,” Nickelodeon said in a statement.
"He was a beloved friend and long-time creative partner to everyone at Nickelodeon, and our hearts go out to his entire family. Steve imbued ‘SpongeBob SquarePants’ with a unique sense of humour and innocence that has brought joy to generations of kids and families everywhere.
"His utterly original characters and the world of Bikini Bottom will long stand as a reminder of the value of optimism, friendship and the limitless power of imagination."