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Jack Benny

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NEWS
September 11, 1994 | THOMAS O'NEIL
"Most people cry when they win an Emmy," Jack Benny once said. "I cry when I lose." Benny, it turned out, shed tears only twice--in 1955 and again in 1956--before he finally picked up an Emmy Award for being voted TV's best comedian of 1957. Not all of the small screen's biggest stars, however, have been so lucky. When the Emmy winners are announced Sunday, one of the most popular performers in prime time may face the saddest fate of her TV career.
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ENTERTAINMENT
July 22, 2013 | By Susan King
Bob Hope was the wisecracker. Milton Berle was a clown. George Burns and Gracie Allen were farceurs of domestic life. And Jack Benny was the "Everyman" comedian. For nearly half-a-century, Benny kept audiences in stitches with his alter-ego of a vain penny-pincher who was forever 39 and delusional about his skill at playing the violin. His catchphrases - "well" (with a long pause) and "now cut that out" - were part of the pop culture landscape for decades. FOR THE RECORD: 'The Jack Benny Program': The Classic Hollywood column in the July 22 Calendar section on the DVD release of 'The Jack Benny Program: The Lost Episodes' misidentified the founder and president of the International Jack Benny Fan Club as Lauren Leff.
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NEWS
January 22, 1998
Sam Perrin, 96, veteran writer for comedian Jack Benny. Perrin penned jokes for Benny's droll, penny-pinching persona on radio and television for about 40 years. Nominated seven times, Perrin won Emmy Awards in 1959 and again in 1960 for his work on "The Jack Benny Show." The writer also contributed to the scripts of the motion pictures "The Goldwyn Follies" in 1938 and "Navy Blues" in 1941. On Jan. 8 in Woodland Hills.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 15, 2012 | Dennis McLellan
Irving Fein was a veteran Hollywood studio publicist when he began his 28-year association with Jack Benny in 1947, first as the popular radio comedian's publicity and advertising director. One of Fein's successful ideas was to promote Benny's new television program on CBS in 1950 via a full-page Macy's ad in New York newspapers: a photo of the famously "cheap" comedian shopping at the department store, with the headline: "MORE PROOF THAT MACY'S IS VERY KIND TO THE POCKETBOOK ... JACK BENNY SHOPS HERE!"
REAL ESTATE
December 1, 1985 | RUTH RYON, Times Staff Writer
Jack Benny lived there--a 2.5-acre Holmby Hills home across the street from Hugh Hefner's "Playboy Mansion"--and the old Benny home has been sold, again. The house--a 1927 Italian villa with a long, private driveway, a motorcourt for 30 cars, a chauffeur's quarters, a ballroom-size living room and rolling lawns--was the last place the famous comedian lived. Benny died at the age of 80 in 1974. His wife of nearly 50 years, Mary Livingstone, lived there until she died at 77 in 1983.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 11, 2010 | By Valerie J. Nelson
Eddie Carroll, an actor who for decades gave voice to Jiminy Cricket in Disney projects and impersonated Jack Benny in a noted one-man stage show, has died. He was 76. Carroll died Tuesday from a brain tumor at the Motion Picture and Television Fund Hospital in Woodland Hills, said his wife, Carolyn. "He was so proud to do both roles," his wife said. "He just admired the whole fantasy of Jiminy Cricket, and he loved the man . . . who was Jack Benny." In 1973, Carroll became the second actor to voice the cricket, who was the title character's conscience in the 1940 animated film "Pinocchio."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 15, 2012 | Dennis McLellan
Irving Fein was a veteran Hollywood studio publicist when he began his 28-year association with Jack Benny in 1947, first as the popular radio comedian's publicity and advertising director. One of Fein's successful ideas was to promote Benny's new television program on CBS in 1950 via a full-page Macy's ad in New York newspapers: a photo of the famously "cheap" comedian shopping at the department store, with the headline: "MORE PROOF THAT MACY'S IS VERY KIND TO THE POCKETBOOK ... JACK BENNY SHOPS HERE!"
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 5, 1985 | JULIA FORTIER, Times Staff Writer
Holdup man: "Your money or your life." (Long pause.) Jack Benny: "I'm thinking it over." For those who remember the running gag about his supposed stinginess, that joke from one of the late Jack Benny's radio shows has never been forgotten. But Benny has faded in the minds of too many others, concluded comedian Norm Crosby and Benny's longtime friend George Burns. Hence, a campaign to honor Benny with a commemorative postage stamp.
NEWS
November 22, 1991 | PSYCHE PASCUAL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Sixty scripts written for comedian Jack Benny's radio shows have been acquired by the Thousand Oaks Library as part of its collection on radio and television history, officials said Thursday. Librarian Brad Miller said the scripts were purchased from Benny's longtime producer and director, Hilliard Marks, for $1,200. "It's a significant acquisition," Miller said. "It's not a large collection, but it fleshes out what we have from the 1950s."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 3, 2006 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
George Balzer, 91, an Emmy-winning comedy writer, died of natural causes Thursday at his home in Van Nuys, according to his son, Tim Balzer. Balzer was part of a team of comedy writers who won the Emmy for "The Jack Benny Program," which premiered on television in 1950 and became "The Jack Benny Hour" in the mid-1960s. He started writing for Benny in 1943, when the show was on radio, and moved to television with Burns during the 25 years he spent under contract with the famous comedian.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 25, 2012 | By Dennis McLellan, Los Angeles Times
Al Gordon, an Emmy Award-winning comedy writer who spent much of his more than 40-year career writing for Jack Benny's penny-pinching, vain and perennially 39-year-old persona, has died. He was 89. Gordon died Wednesday of age-related causes at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, said his son, Neil. In a career that began after World War II and included writing for Eddie Cantor's radio show, Gordon soon teamed with comedy writer Hal Goldman . A few months after they met, they learned that Jack Benny needed new material for Rochester, the valet character played by Eddie Anderson on Benny's radio show.
SPORTS
May 3, 2010 | Jerry Crowe
Ernie Shelton convinced himself that one day he would be celebrated in track and field circles in the same way Roger Bannister and Parry O'Brien are remembered. Bannister, of course, was the first person to run a four-minute mile, O'Brien the first to put the shot 60 feet. Shelton, a two-time NCAA champion at USC, believed that he would be the first to clear seven feet in the high jump. Such was his obsession that he had a crossbar mounted in his bedroom — at precisely seven feet off the floor, of course.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 25, 2010 | By Steve Harvey, Los Angeles Times
It used to be a sort of running joke: Where else but in Southern California would a high school have a statue of a movie star on its front lawn? The reference was to Venice High's Myrna Loy monument. But there was an explanation. Loy was not an actress, just a student, when she modeled for the sculpture in 1922. The oft-damaged cement work was replaced by a bronze version earlier this month. Several other local statues and busts of notables also occupy what seem, at first glance, to be unlikely settings.
NEWS
April 13, 2010
IRS interest: The Money Talk column in Sunday's Business section said the IRS charges 4% a month interest on unpaid taxes. The rate is 4% a year. Eddie Carroll obituary: In Sunday's California section, the obituary of Eddie Carroll, an actor who voiced Jiminy Cricket and impersonated Jack Benny, said that his daughter's name was Tia Monti. Her name is Tina Monti. If you believe that we have made an error, or you have questions about The Times' journalistic standards and practices, you may contact Deirdre Edgar, readers' representative, by e-mail at readers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 11, 2010 | By Valerie J. Nelson
Eddie Carroll, an actor who for decades gave voice to Jiminy Cricket in Disney projects and impersonated Jack Benny in a noted one-man stage show, has died. He was 76. Carroll died Tuesday from a brain tumor at the Motion Picture and Television Fund Hospital in Woodland Hills, said his wife, Carolyn. "He was so proud to do both roles," his wife said. "He just admired the whole fantasy of Jiminy Cricket, and he loved the man . . . who was Jack Benny." In 1973, Carroll became the second actor to voice the cricket, who was the title character's conscience in the 1940 animated film "Pinocchio."
OPINION
June 6, 2009 | PATT MORRISON
A little deep Googling reveals that a sizable hunk of what I've laughed at in American humor over the last 30 years bears the mark of Harry Shearer: On TV, "Saturday Night Live" and a dozen or so character voices on "The Simpsons." On radio, "The Jack Benny Program" (before my time but just thinking of Benny makes me smile) and "Le Show." On the big screen, "This Is Spinal Tap" and "Teddy Bears' Picnic." My seat was next to his at the O.J.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 15, 1986
Frank Nelson, a regular on the Jack Benny radio and television shows for more than 30 years and a professional actor for six decades, died Friday at his home in Hollywood after a long illness. He was 75. Although he was an accomplished dramatic actor and in his early days played leading-man roles, he was best known for his comedic skills, and especially for his work with Jack Benny.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 24, 1986 | LAWRENCE CHRISTON
"I'm proud to be here today and get this award," Lily Tomlin told her audience. "I once did a 'Laugh-In' with Jack Benny. I watched him as a youngster, just like kids later watched Ernestine and dressed like her. But I never dressed up like Jack Benny." Dressed in a rose-colored pants suit, comedienne Tomlin paid her tribute Wednesday to the late comedy great as she received UCLA's "Jack Benny Award for Excellence in Entertainment."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 3, 2006 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
George Balzer, 91, an Emmy-winning comedy writer, died of natural causes Thursday at his home in Van Nuys, according to his son, Tim Balzer. Balzer was part of a team of comedy writers who won the Emmy for "The Jack Benny Program," which premiered on television in 1950 and became "The Jack Benny Hour" in the mid-1960s. He started writing for Benny in 1943, when the show was on radio, and moved to television with Burns during the 25 years he spent under contract with the famous comedian.
NATIONAL
November 26, 2005 | Josh Noel, Chicago Tribune
When the U.S. Postal Service announced this month that a first-class stamp would jump from 37 to 39 cents, Laura Leff rejoiced. Leff, president of the International Jack Benny Fan Club, has been waiting at least a decade to get her favorite comedian's name back on a stamp. She figured that if it ever hit 39 cents, she would have the ideal way to honor his best-known joke: Benny was eternally 39 years old.
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