Manny P. here…
Most younger folks remember Leslie Nielsen as a great comedian. Over the last 3 decades, he co-starred in Airplane!, The Naked Gun series, and in a couple of Scary Movies. However, this fine character actor toiled in variety of genres that spanned over 100 movie credits, and 1,500 television appearances. Most media experts will discuss in the coming days about his large comedic ability, most notably in the Police Squad! series, which led to The Naked Gun films. Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History chooses to remember his entire stellar career…
The Canadian-born actor was inspired to perform by his famous uncle – Jean Hersholt. Nielsen began his long career during The Golden Age of Television, and was cast in several episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The New Breed, and The Virginian. He also had recurring roles on The Bold Ones, Hawaii 5-0, Columbo, The Streets of San Francisco, Kung Fu, and Murder She Wrote.
LESLIE NIELSEN & ANNE FRANCIS IN FORBIDDEN PLANET
In his early motion pictures, Nielsen usually played villains, or persons-of-authority. His most notable pre-comedic screen roles were in Forbidden Planet, Tammy and the Bachelor, Ransom!, and The Poseidon Adventure. He also auditioned for Ben-Hur, though he was not selected. When not on television, he spent most of the 1960s in “B” Westerns.
In 1993, he wrote what he called a Fictional Autobiography called The Naked Truth. The tagline to the book: At Last! The Hero of The Naked Gun Tells His Incredible Life Story — Uncensored, Uninhibited, and Totally Made Up! There is no question, this versatile actor completely embraced the Comedy genre.
Between appearing in those popular comedies, he often toured with his one-man show on the life of the great defense lawyer, Clarence Darrow.
Leslie Nielsen died on Sunday from complications with pneumonia. He was 84.
Until next time> “never forget”