Jerry Lewis Drops F-Bomb During Telethon

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  1. Posted Sep 4th 2007 12:49PM by TMZ Staff

    [​IMG]A woozy Jerry Lewis, 81, went all Isaiah Washington on his telethon last night, calling someone -- or something -- an "illiterate fag."

    In the midst of a typically Lewis-ian rant in the 18th hour of his Labor Day telethon, France's favorite comedian swayed, trying to dodge the cameraman, then introduced a "family member" as "the illiterate fag," then remembered, seemingly, that he was on live TV ... stopped himself and tried to move on.

    The MDA telethon raised a record $63 million for muscular dystrophy over the three-day weekend.

    After scolding us for calling so early (it's not like he dropped an offensive slur or anything!), a rep for Lewis had no comment on the incident.

    UPDATE: Neil Giuliano, President of Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), has just issued the following statement to TMZ: "Jerry Lewis' on-air use of this kind of anti-gay slur is simply unacceptable. It also feeds a climate of hatred and intolerance that contributes to putting our community in harm's way. Our nation's media have done an admirable job this year holding public figures accountable for their use of anti-gay slurs, and I hope they continue to do so with Mr. Lewis."

    Giuliano told TMZ that GLAAD is reaching out to Lewis' representatives today to request a meeting with him. "We want to sit down with him," Giuliano tells us, "help him understand why these words are so hurtful, and give him an opportunity to raise public awareness about the destructive impact of these kinds of anti-gay slurs, even more so in attempted humor."
     
  2. Lewis Takes Foot Out of Mouth, Issues Statement

    Posted Sep 4th 2007 5:49PM by TMZ Staff
    Filed under: TV, Wacky and Weird
    [​IMG]Alleged comedian Jerry Lewis has issued a statement to CNN, following the public outcry over his use of a gay slur on this weekend's MDA Telethon:

    "During the 21-1/2-hour live broadcast of my Telethon for the Muscular Dystrophy Association this weekend, I made a joking comment to a member of my production team. I apologize to anyone who was offended. I obviously made a bad choice of words. Everyone who knows me understands that I hold no prejudices in this regard. In the family atmosphere of the Telethon, I forget that not everyone knows me that well. That something like this would distract from the true purpose of the Telethon pains me deeply. The success of the show and all the good that will come from it shouldn't be lost because of one unfortunate word. I accept responsibility for what I said. There are no excuses. I am sorry."
     
  3. GLAAD Accepts Jerry's Mea Culpa

    Posted Sep 4th 2007 7:37PM by TMZ Staff
    Filed under: TV
    [​IMG]After Jerry Lewis apologized for making an anti-gay slur during his MDA Telethon on Monday, GLAAD issued the following statement to TMZ: "GLAAD thanks Jerry Lewis for his swift and direct apology for this incident. We join millions of Americans in applauding the important work of the Muscular Dystrophy Association and wish MDA and Mr. Lewis much continued success in their efforts."
     
  4. I really like the younger, hilariously funny actor version of this man. What happened to him?! He's really strange now.
     
  5. totally deteriorating
     
  6. I think if he would have said what he said years ago, no one would have said anything about it.
     
  7. :shrugs: guess it depends on how many years ago.

    Did it have the same connotation 40 yrs ago?

    In any case, thank God people are more aware of what they say and how demeaning it can be.
     
  8. Though I never enjoyed his work as an actor/performer, I always commended his efforts for MDA.

    So sad that an annual event for such a great cause can be erased by such a ridiculously irresponsible moment.
     
  9. I really think he ought to start priming someone to take his place. He ought to have someone who is there through every telethon with him now so they can easily take over when Lewis is unable (or would be ill-advised) to do so.

    Clearly his 2 second delay is malfuntioning, which is very dangerous in live television. Comments like this are very hurtful and when they are used by people on TV can give the mistaken impression that language like that is okay to use. It is not. Comments like that do not come out of one's mouth accidentally unless they are a normal part of your vocabulary to start. In this light, I think Lewis is risking his legacy by continuing with the telethon for too many more years. If he starts priming a replacement now, he can bow out gracefully and pass the baton instead of making another faux-pas and being driven out in shame.
     
  10. ITA:yes:

    I can tell you that BS doesn't 'accidentally' flow from my lips!
     
  11. I agree. If you watch old shows like "All in the Family" and "The Jeffersons" , there were things on those show that people would find offensive today. Yet, they were the number one shows for over 10 years back in the day.
     
  12. In his golden years, I saw more of a meaner side to him, a very bigoted, opinionated miserable old man.

    They need a new spokesman for that telethon.
     
  13. Oh dear.... He's getting too old.
     
  14. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4910594/Jerry-Lewis-intentionally-excluded-oldest-kids-will.html

    No laughing matter: Jerry Lewis 'intentionally excluded' his six oldest children from inheriting his estate and ordered that they receive no benefits in final will


    Jerry Lewis had some strong words for his six oldest children in his final will and testament.

    The legendary funnyman made a point of clearly stating in the legal filing that his six sons with first wife, British-born singer Patti Palmer, were to get nothing upon his death.

    'I have intentionally excluded Gary Lewis, Ronald Lewis, Anthony Joseph Lewis, Christopher Joseph Lewis, Scott Anthony Lewis, and Joseph Christopher Lewis and their descendants as beneficiaries of my estate, it being my intention that they shall receive no benefits hereunder,' declared Lewis in his will, which was last updated four years before his death.

    Lewis kept Joseph in the will despite the fact that he passed away in 2009 - three years prior to the date the document was executed - as the result of a drug overdose.

    His estate will now go to his widow SanDee, a former Las Vegas dancer, and their daughter Danielle, who the couple adopted in 1992 after nine years of marriage.

    The Blast was the first to report Lewis' snub of his children.

    It is unclear why Lewis made certain his five surviving children could not inherit his estate, and if the move was due to a personal grudge or simply because they are older than his adopted daughter Danielle, who is 25.

    Lewis was married to his first wife Palmer from 1944 until 1980.

    The couple welcomed Gary in 1946, Ronald in 1949, Scott in 1956, Christopher in 1957, and Anthony in 1959.
    The couple's sixth and youngest son Joseph was born in 1965 and passed away at the age of 45 from a heroin overdose.

    At the time of his death he had not spoken to his father in 20 years, with Lewis refusing to even pay for his funeral.

    He also allegedly asked Joseph's five brothers to keep his death quiet in hopes that the media would not find out about the overdose.

    Joseph spent his time eating at soup kitchens and living in homeless shelters over the course of his life as a result of his battle with drugs.

    He also sold a story about his father in 1989 to the National Enquirer, saying that he and his five brothers were viciously beaten by the entertainer as children.

    'Living with him was pure hell. I've tried drugs. I've tried therapy and the truth still hurts, my father doesn't love me,' said Joseph in that interview.

    At the time of his death he had three sons, aged 10, 18 and 20, who had never once met their grandfather.

    Gary, Lewis' oldest son, found fame as a member of the music group Gary Lewis & The Playboys, who had a number one hit back in 1964 with 'This Diamond Ring.'

    He too spoke out against his father after his younger brother's death, saying he blamed the man for Joseph's passing.
    Gary told the National Enquirer in a 2010 interview: 'Jerry Lewis is a mean and evil person. He was never loving and caring toward me or my brothers.'

    He went on to say: 'I don't know if Joe's death is drug related, but I believe it could have been prevented if he and my father had been on better terms. I believe he partly died of a broken heart.'

    Gary then added: '[My father] doesn't really care. He's more worried about his career and his image than his own family.'

    Lewis lamented the passing of his son however in a 2014 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, which came two years after he had executed his final will.

    'To this day I don't understand it because it's unfair -- not unfair to me, but unfair to him,' said Lewis.

    'That he went that way made the unfairness stupidity. But he was my son and he's gone, and there's not a lot I can do about that. I beat myself a thousand times. Sam will come to me and say, 'Are we beating ourselves again?' I will say, 'A little bit.''

    He went on to say that his wife would then tell him: ''You had nothing to do with that. You sent him out into the world when he was 25. You sent what you thought was a perfect human being. What he did with his time away from you is what the end result showed.''
    Lewis then added: 'But I'll tell you this: You don't get over that.'

    Those comments were a far cry from the ones he had made just five years prior, calling his son a 'dope addict' and showing no emotion over his death.

    Lewis also had a difficult relationship with his first wife, who sued him in 1980 when she filed for divorce, demanding $450,000 a year to support herself and son Joseph.

    She said in her filing that her husband had 'displayed an open disregard for our marriage, and I am a 'financial puppet' at the mercy of his office, with no money of my own.'

    Patti also cited her husband's affair with SanDee, who would later become his second wife, in her filing, saying that he 'lavished gifts of jewelry and luggage on [his mistress] in Paris, Hawaii, Las Vegas and Florida.'

    Lewis also allegedly has an illegitimate daughter Suzann who was born out of wedlock in the 1950s during his three-year affair with model Lynn Dixon.

    Suzann is currently homeless.
    The manic, rubber-faced showman who jumped and hollered to fame in a lucrative partnership with Dean Martin before settling down to become a self-conscious screen auteur passed away in August.

    He died at the age of 91 in his Las Vegas home surrounded by family, referring to his second wife SanDee and Danielle.

    Just a few weeks after he passed authorities revealed that Lewis he died as a result of end-stage cardiac disease and peripheral vascular disease.

    His later years were spent off the big screen but still maintaining his larger-than-life profile as the national spokesperson for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, with his MDA telethons and events raising over $2.5billion over the years.

    Lewis is believed to have left behind a rather modest estate in terms of cash and property, but a fortune in terms of intellectual property.

    The actor owned almost all of his most famous films outright, including 'The Nutty Professor' and 'Hardly Working.'

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    uhpharm01 likes this.
  15. He sounds like an *******.
     
    tweegy and TC1 like this.