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Dick Shawn (1923-1987)

  1.  Bobby Darin, State Fair, 1961.  Among the early castings announced in October 1960 was the comic for Jerry Dundee.   Darin had more clout, Top Ten-wise. For a wee while. Although far from the funniest of comics, Shawn played 63 screen roles, most  notably Lorenzo St DuBois, aka LSD in The Producers, 1967. . 
  2. Tony Bennett, The Oscar, 1965.    Bennet called it a terrible experience, ,putting him off “acting” forever.  The comic Shawn had also been thought of for Hymie Kelly, narrating the sordid tale of his film-star buddy Stephen Boyd.   But nothing could alter  the scathing opinion of New York Times critic Bosley Crowther: “another distressing example of Hollywood fouling its nest - professionally, socially, commercially and especially artistically.”
  3. Joseph Bologna, Transylvania 6-5000, 1985.  It was Shawn v Bologhna for the mad scientist Dr Malavaqu. Croatia and Slovenia payed Transylvania. Because the Dell chemical combine had frozen funds there.
  4. Ted Bessell, Hail Tn The Chief, TV, 1985.    Shawn and Spalding Gray were among  those auditioning to support the first female US president - Patty Duke (almost, inevitable, of course) -  as she dealt with  a Soviet nuclear war (Shawn became the USSR leader Zolotov), cabinet spies,  personal attacks, an impotent husband and son in a sex scandal. The series died after seven chapters. Bissel was famous as  Marlo Thomas’ boyfriend  Danny, in That Girl!, TV, 1965-1971.




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