David Zucker Pays Tribute to Leslie Nielsen

Who better to put into words the talent and long lasting legacy of Leslie Nielsen than writer/director/producer David Zucker? David, along with his brother Jerry and friend Jim Abrahams, cast Nielsen in several of his most memorable roles, such as Airplane and The Naked Gun. Those films helped reinvent the then serious actor as a huge comedy star and make a whole other generation aware of his deadpan brilliance. Zucker obviously knew Nielsen well and wrote a heartfelt tribute to the late actor, who passed away on Sunday. They have the full transcript, but you can also read it after the jump. Read More »

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Leslie Nielsen Dead at 84

Manitoba radiostation CJOB 68 is reporting that comic actor Leslie Nielsen has passed away in hospital in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida after complications from pneumonia. The website for the station has posted supposed audio of the news from Nielsen’s nephew¬†Doug Nielsen. I am unable to find a second confirmation of this report, but the news is being re-reported by big news publications.

Update: We now have an official confirmation, a statement from his agent:

We are sadden by the passing of beloved actor Leslie Nielsen, probably best remembered as Lt. Frank Drebin in THE NAKED GUN series of pictures, but who enjoyed a more than 60 year career in motion pictures and television.

Nielsen has appeared on the big and small screens for 55 years, appearing in a lot of popular spoof films like Airplane!, The Naked Gun Series, Spy Hard, the Scary Movie series, in the live-action adaptation of Mr. Magoo and most recently in Superhero Movie and Stan Helsing. I’ve included a couple compilations of Nielsen in action after the jump.
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David Zucker’s An American Carol Movie Trailer

Fox News has the trailer for David Zucker‘s new political comedy An American Carol. This looks like a higher budget version of Uwe Boll’s Postal, which is sad since Zucker was once the mastermind behind Airplane! Tell me what you think in the comments below!

An American Carol is a comic retelling of A Christmas Carol, but instead of Ebenezer Scrooge, we have a cynical, anti-American documentary filmmaker named Michael Malone (extremely subtle), who sets out on a crusade to abolish the July Fourth holiday with his film Die You American Pigs. On the fourth of July, he is visited by three ghosts who tey to show him the meaning of Independence, instead of Christmas. Chris Farley’s brother Kevin Farley stars as the filmmaker, alongside Kelsey Grammer as General Patton, Jon Voight as General Washington, Leslie Nielsen as himself, Bill O’ Reilly as himself, Dennis Hopper, and James Woods. Vivendi Entertainment is releasing the film on 2000 screens on October 3rd 2008.

Vivendi Entertainment picked up the U.S. rights to David Zucker‘s new comedy An American Carol. Imagine for a moment, a retelling of A Christmas Carol, but instead of Ebenezer Scrooge, we have a cynical, anti-American documentary filmmaker unsubtlely named Michael Malone, who sets out on a crusade to abolish the July Fourth holiday with his film Die You American Pigs. On the fourth of July, he is visited by three ghosts who tey to show him the meaning of Independence, instead of Christmas. If you were a Hollywood studio executive, and heard this pitch, would you greenlight the film?

Zucker is known as the mastermind behind Airplane! and the Naked Gun films, but also the last two Scary Movie films. Chris Farley’s brother Kevin Farley stars as the filmmaker, alongside Kelsey Grammer seen above as General Patton, next to Jon Voight as General Washington. Also, Leslie Nielsen as himself, Bill O’ Reilly as himself, Dennis Hopper, and James Woods. Call me a liberal, but this just sounds lame.

source: Variety

Superhero Cast Announced

Superhero

Dimension Films have finally announced the completed cast line-up for their upcoming superhero comedy spoof. The cast of Superhero includes: Drake Bell (Yours, Mine and Ours), Sara Paxton (Sydney White), Christopher McDonald (Happy Gilmore), Leslie Nielsen (The Naked Gun), Kevin Hart (Soul Plane), Marion Ross (Happy Days), Ryan Hansen (Palo Alto), Jeffrey Tambor (Hellboy) and Brent Spiner (Star Trek: The Next Generation).

I’m a little disappointed with the cast list (with the exception of McDonald and Spiner), but I’ve already set my expectations really low as Scary Movie 3 & 4 writer/director Craig Mazin will helm the project. I really think a superhero spoof could be great if done right. I’m kind of surprised that they’re not calling it “Superhero Movie”, or has America caught on that the Scary Movie franchise sucks? If so, I’m surprised it took four films.

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