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Jonathan Winters

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OPINION
April 16, 2013
Re "Comic had ark of characters," Obituary, April 13 I first met Jonathan Winters in 1967 in Vietnam. Not many Hollywood people did USO visits to our remote location. We never hosted the Bob Hope-type entertainers. Winters was brilliant. Before the "show," some of us engaged him in what we would call just a conversation. Everything that was said turned into a joke or something original and funny. In some ways it was hard to determine just who Winters really was; the continuous on-stage personality or someone masquerading as a regular person.
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ENTERTAINMENT
March 28, 2014 | By Ryan Faughnder
When a documentary-turned mockumentary about the late comic great Jonathan Winters debuted in 2011, it didn't go far commercially. So what could "Certifiably Jonathan" producers Richard Marshall and Matt Fortnow do with hundreds of hours of unused footage, thousands of DVDs and multiple boxes of merchandise?  Try to sell everything, rights and all, on (what else?) EBay.  ON LOCATION: Where the cameras roll The filmmakers originally set out to chronicle the painting career of Winters, who during his half-century-career hosted his own variety shows, made numerous appearances on "The Tonight Show" and costarred in "Mork & Mindy.
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ENTERTAINMENT
April 12, 2013 | By Chris Erskine
Both straight-faced and antic, Jonathan Winters could get a laugh out of Leviticus. His face had more rubber than a set of Goodyear tires. There are comics who can make you laugh, and there are comics who can make you hurt. Winters was one of those. Yep, the folksy, Ohio-born comic could be lethal with laugher and goes down as one of the funniest men of his time -- of all time -- right up there with Groucho, Mel Brooks, Sid Caesar. He may not have been the king of comedy, more like its reigning court jester.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 21, 2013 | By Carolyn Kellogg
The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor was awarded to Carol Burnett on Sunday night. The ceremony in Washington included appearances by Julie Andrews, Tina Fey, Vicki Lawrence, Tony Bennett and Burnett herself. Although the prize officially "recognizes people who have had an impact on American society in ways similar to the distinguished 19th century novelist and essayist best known as Mark Twain," it is rarely given to humorists best known for their writing. That's probably because it's presented by the Kennedy Center, which is focused on performance.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 12, 2013 | By Deborah Vankin
The trailblazing comic improviser Jonathan Winters, who died Thursday at age 87, was a seminal influence on scores of comedians and the person Robin Williams credits as his mentor. Winters' high energy, unpredictable and often surreal comic riffs included an array of characters, reenactments of movie scenes and pointed, quick-morphing sound effects that he often produced on the spot.  Take, for example, his 1964 appearance on "The Jack Paar Program. " In order to illustrate Winters' genius for creating comedy out of thin air, Paar gave him a simple wooden stick.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 28, 2014 | By Ryan Faughnder
When a documentary-turned mockumentary about the late comic great Jonathan Winters debuted in 2011, it didn't go far commercially. So what could "Certifiably Jonathan" producers Richard Marshall and Matt Fortnow do with hundreds of hours of unused footage, thousands of DVDs and multiple boxes of merchandise?  Try to sell everything, rights and all, on (what else?) EBay.  ON LOCATION: Where the cameras roll The filmmakers originally set out to chronicle the painting career of Winters, who during his half-century-career hosted his own variety shows, made numerous appearances on "The Tonight Show" and costarred in "Mork & Mindy.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 13, 2013 | By Dennis McLellan, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Comic great Jonathan Winters was struggling to make a name for himself in the early 1950s when a man at the nightclub where he was performing offered some life-changing advice. Winters had a talent for channeling the voices of celebrities like Gary Cooper and Boris Karloff but, the man observed, "All you're doing is shining their shoes. You'd best think up your own characters. " That, Winters told TV Guide many years later, was "the best hunk of criticism I ever got. " With his rubbery, moon-shaped face and pitch-perfect ear for speech patterns, Winters began to unleash a cavalcade of charmingly twisted characters, including a redneck ballplayer, a lisping child and a prissy schoolmarm.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 12, 2013 | By Dennis McLellan, This post has been corrected. See note at the bottom for details.
Jonathan Winters, one of the great comedians of the 20 th century, died Thursday night. He was 87. Winters, who had been in declining health, died at his longtime home in Montecito, said Gary Owens, who was his good friend. “He was one of the great comedy talents in the history of the United States. Just brilliant,” said Owens, a radio personality who was the announcer for TV's “Laugh-In.” PHOTOS: Jonathan Winters | 1925-2013 Jack Paar, who helped propel Winters into the national consciousness with appearances on "The Tonight Show" in the late 1950s, once introduced the freewheeling comedian by saying, "Well, if you ask me who are the 25 most funny people I know, I would say, 'Here they are: Jonathan Winters.' " Born in Dayton, Ohio, on Nov. 11, 1925, he grew up to have a rubbery, moon-shaped face and pitch-perfect ear for speech patterns.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 12, 2013 | By Patrick Kevin Day
Jonathan Winters, who died on Friday at age 87, had a talent ideal for the small screen. Though he did appear in several comedic classics, including "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World" and "The Russians are Coming, the Russians are Coming," it was the less constrained world of TV that allowed him to flit and morph between comic bits at lightning speed. One of the first great venues on TV where the comic rose to prominence was on "The Jack Paar Program. " This appearance from 1964 demonstrates Winters' ability to improvise at a moment's notice, in this case with the prop of a simple stick.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 13, 2013 | By Robert Lloyd, Los Angeles Times Television Critic
The large child known as Jonathan Winters died Friday at age 87. Accompanying him into the now-noisier hereafter were the multitudes he contained, a cast of men, women, children of every race and nationality, rich and poor, city and country. Some were characters with names to whom the comedian would return - Maude Frickert, the go-go granny - but more of them existed for a minute or less, brought into focus, played with and then sent on their way, as another appeared in their place.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 23, 2013 | By Patrick Kevin Day
Sunday night's Emmy Awards featured the standard "In Memoriam" segment, in which the faces and clips of the recently deceased played to varying levels of applause. But this year, they made a decision to single out five people to receive special tributes, delivered - sometimes tearfully - by former costars. One of the most curious decisions made for these tributes was that no actual clips were used to demonstrate said person's exceptional mastery of the craft. Instead, we got secondhand descriptions of Jonathan Winters' best comedy bits courtesy of Robin Williams, or a pivotal scene between Carroll O'Connor and Jean Stapleton as re-created by Rob Reiner.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 30, 2013 | By Mark Olsen
Right down to the brute functionality of its title, "The Smurfs 2" may be the platonic ideal of a major studio sequel - no markedly better or worse than the first and with just enough difference to lay claim to being something new. Just as with the 2011 film "The Smurfs," the new "The Smurfs 2" is a passable mediocrity. Again mixing live-action with computer animation, the story this time revolves around the bad wizard Gargamel (Hank Azaria), who has been performing as a magician in modern-day Paris, kidnapping Smurfette (voiced by Katy Perry)
OPINION
April 16, 2013
Re "Don't single out the Scouts," Editorial, April 12 The Boy Scouts of America is a terrific organization, but it must follow the rules. If it wants to restrict membership based on sexual orientation, that's fine. But if it chooses to restrict membership to include only heterosexuals, it should lose its tax-free status as a nonprofit and give up the benefits associated with such an organization. Most Boy Scouts such as myself started out as Cub Scouts. In Cub Scouts we were taught, "Be square and obey the law of the pack.
OPINION
April 16, 2013
Re "Ex-KPMG accountant is charged," Business, April 12 For the 25 years I ran the California Community Foundation, KPMG was our auditing firm. For 10 of those years, our auditor was Scott London, the former KPMG auditor accused of fraud. I knew London only through our meetings at the foundation, but I liked what I saw. If life were "The Simpsons," the affable London would be Ned Flanders. But he was enormously successful, earning more than $500,000 a year. This makes the $25,000 to $50,000 he received for abetting his friend in insider trading all the more inexplicable and tragic.
OPINION
April 16, 2013
Re "Comic had ark of characters," Obituary, April 13 I first met Jonathan Winters in 1967 in Vietnam. Not many Hollywood people did USO visits to our remote location. We never hosted the Bob Hope-type entertainers. Winters was brilliant. Before the "show," some of us engaged him in what we would call just a conversation. Everything that was said turned into a joke or something original and funny. In some ways it was hard to determine just who Winters really was; the continuous on-stage personality or someone masquerading as a regular person.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 13, 2013 | By Robert Lloyd, Los Angeles Times Television Critic
The large child known as Jonathan Winters died Friday at age 87. Accompanying him into the now-noisier hereafter were the multitudes he contained, a cast of men, women, children of every race and nationality, rich and poor, city and country. Some were characters with names to whom the comedian would return - Maude Frickert, the go-go granny - but more of them existed for a minute or less, brought into focus, played with and then sent on their way, as another appeared in their place.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 4, 1991 | From Times Wire Services
Comedian Jonathan Winters, who plays the father of a high school principal in ABC's new comedy "Davis Rules," says he was too neurotic as a child to be funny. "I had an old man who had the longest finger of any man I'd ever known," Winters, 65, recalled in an interview in People magazine's Feb. 11 issue. "He'd point at me and say, 'You're dumb!' That really helps as a kid." His parents divorced when he was 7. "I had a tough time," he added. "I was full of neuroses and complexes.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 14, 2009 | Staff and Wire Reports
Eileen Winters, 84, comedian Jonathan Winters' wife of 60 years, died after a long battle with breast cancer Sunday evening at home in Montecito, said their son, Jay. The couple met at the Dayton Art Institute after World War II. In 1949, the year after they were married, Eileen encouraged her funny husband to enter an amateur talent show. "The first time I heard him talk," she later recalled, "my jaw began hanging open. Did he make up all those things by himself?"
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 13, 2013 | By Dennis McLellan, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Comic great Jonathan Winters was struggling to make a name for himself in the early 1950s when a man at the nightclub where he was performing offered some life-changing advice. Winters had a talent for channeling the voices of celebrities like Gary Cooper and Boris Karloff but, the man observed, "All you're doing is shining their shoes. You'd best think up your own characters. " That, Winters told TV Guide many years later, was "the best hunk of criticism I ever got. " With his rubbery, moon-shaped face and pitch-perfect ear for speech patterns, Winters began to unleash a cavalcade of charmingly twisted characters, including a redneck ballplayer, a lisping child and a prissy schoolmarm.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 12, 2013 | By Dennis McLellan, This post has been corrected. See note at the bottom for details.
Jonathan Winters, one of the great comedians of the 20 th century, died Thursday night. He was 87. Winters, who had been in declining health, died at his longtime home in Montecito, said Gary Owens, who was his good friend. “He was one of the great comedy talents in the history of the United States. Just brilliant,” said Owens, a radio personality who was the announcer for TV's “Laugh-In.” PHOTOS: Jonathan Winters | 1925-2013 Jack Paar, who helped propel Winters into the national consciousness with appearances on "The Tonight Show" in the late 1950s, once introduced the freewheeling comedian by saying, "Well, if you ask me who are the 25 most funny people I know, I would say, 'Here they are: Jonathan Winters.' " Born in Dayton, Ohio, on Nov. 11, 1925, he grew up to have a rubbery, moon-shaped face and pitch-perfect ear for speech patterns.
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