CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 1, 2003 |
Buddy Hackett, who broke into comedy as a young waiter-performer in New York's Catskill Mountains and went on to achieve iconic status as a raunchy nightclub performer and rubber-faced clown in movies including "The Music Man" and "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World," died Monday at his home in Malibu. He was 78. The cause of death was not immediately clear.
July 2, 2003
"The Love Bug" -- The obituary of Buddy Hackett in Tuesday's California section and a photo caption on A1 mistakenly referred to his film "The Love Bug" as a 1968 hit. It was released in 1969.
July 13, 2003
I have a very special memory of that latex-faced jester Buddy Hackett, with jokes coming out of one side of his mouth ("So We Hop In and Buddy Drives," by Paul Brownfield, July 6). I can confirm that he took laughs wherever he could get them and that was anywhere. When I heard about his death, I thought of one hot afternoon in Las Vegas when I had walked from the Sahara Hotel to Caesars Palace to attend the Alan King Tennis Classic and was told that the event was sold out. As I was leaving, I saw a couple of kids sneaking in by climbing over a wall, disappearing into the shrubbery.
September 29, 2002 |
You are in the "world famous" Friars Club of Beverly Hills sitting at a long white table. At the bar lurks a man whose cratered mug has been in every gangster movie since "Little Caesar." A few feet away, two women in motorized vehicles that look more like Harleys than wheelchairs are negotiating the buffet with its glass bowls of Thousand Island dressing and croutons. The air shimmers with the smell of butane and the sound of Donna Summer singing "God Bless America."
July 6, 2003 |
Around the time that Bonny Lee Bakley, Robert Blake's wife, was found shot to death outside Vitello's restaurant in Studio City, I got one of Buddy Hackett's phone calls. "Everything in her apartment was all packed, right?" he said. "When you pack what's the last thing you do?" I wasn't sure. Lock the doors? Was this a setup for one of Hackett's jokes? When he called, he often had a joke, but they tended to begin with a duck or a horse walking into a bar.
February 24, 2008
DENNIS LIM takes a cheap shot at deceased producer-director Stanley Kramer in his review of the new Sony film collection of Kramer's work ["A Guest Who Just Won't Go Away," Feb. 10]. Lim declares "many of" Kramer's films "suffered from a stiffness and simple-mindedness that was antithetical to convincing drama" -- this about a film library that includes "Champion," "The Men," "The Caine Mutiny" and "High Noon." Lim lauds the dreadful " . . . Mad World" which obscured the comic talents of no less than Buddy Hackett, Sid Caesar and Dick Shawn to name a few; only Buster Keaton managing a hilarious 30-second silent vignette.