Wednesday, June 11, 2014
Jerry Lewis was honored in Hollywood last month on the 50th anniversary of the release of his classic funny film The Nutty Professor. The film is a parody of Robert Louis Stevenson's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
Interviewed on the CBS weekday TV show The Talk, the 88-year-old Lewis revealed the details of the character and script development that went into the film. The 50th anniversary 4-disc DVD set was released last week and is available on Amazon.com and on Netflix.
Lewis, born Joseph Levitch in Newark to Russian Jewish parents, also talked about his secret friendship with President John F. Kennedy and Robert Kennedy. The president hosted him eleven times in the White House without the press knowing that he was there.
On one visit to the Oval Office, Kennedy gave Lewis a plaque for his office containing a motto that he quoted without hesitation on The Talk:
"There are three things that are real: God, human folly, and laughter. Since the first two are beyond our comprehension, you must do the best you can with the third."
Judging from the successes of his long show business career, it would seem that Jerry Lewis listened very carefully to this advice to the delight of audiences everywhere.
(A SPECIAL NOTE FOR NEW EMAIL SUBSCRIBERS: THE VIDEO MAY NOT BE VIEWABLE DIRECTLY FROM THE EMAIL THAT YOU GET EACH DAY ON SOME COMPUTERS AND TABLETS. YOU MUST CLICK ON THE TITLE AT THE TOP OF THE EMAIL TO REACH THE JEWISH HUMOR CENTRAL WEBSITE, FROM WHICH YOU CLICK ON THE PLAY BUTTON IN THE VIDEO IMAGE TO START THE VIDEO.)