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#1
Old 12-20-2016, 10:18 AM
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Jerry Lewis: still an asshole at 90

If this was a comedy bit, it was over my head. I think he's just being a prick.
#2
Old 12-20-2016, 10:25 AM
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I don't see where being "successful in a career" and "a prick" or "an asshole" are mutually exclusive.

This is yet another case where I enjoy the creator's work but don't particularly like the artist.
#3
Old 12-20-2016, 10:38 AM
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Eh, perhaps he shouldn't have agreed to the interview. But, I gotta say, if were 90, and a legend, and some lame kid started asking me those stupid questions, I would probably react the same way.
#4
Old 12-20-2016, 10:50 AM
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Miserable old goat.
#5
Old 12-20-2016, 10:56 AM
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I got the feeling he agreed to the interview, and before they started, the interviewer did something to piss him off.
#6
Old 12-20-2016, 11:22 AM
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I love awkward interviews. I find they are often more revealing than your standard blasé interview full of clichéd questions and glad-handing.

I don't think he comes off as a prick so much as terse. The questions here are pretty basic and I think he can't be bothered with doing the same interview that he has done 100 times over.

Of course the gold-standard for an awkward interview is Jian Gomeshi and Billy-Bob Thornton.
#7
Old 12-20-2016, 11:23 AM
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Could somebody summarize? No matter how prickish the guy is, I know if I click that link I'm going to hear "hey laaady..." all day long.
#8
Old 12-20-2016, 11:23 AM
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He was pissed off right from the beginning because of the huge crew the interviewer brought with him, totally unnecessary these days. And when the interviewer started asking inane questions he let him have it with both barrels.

Good for Jerry.

Last edited by aldiboronti; 12-20-2016 at 11:24 AM.
#9
Old 12-20-2016, 11:33 AM
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I'm torn. On the one hand, much of what's said above is true - the crew and interviewer really seemed to have stepped on Lewis' toes beforehand, and he's giving no slack to inane, boilerplate questions.

OTOH, Jer'... this is what being a celebrity is. Being an asshole to the fifty thousandth film crew you've faced, and a young, naive interviewer (which they all are, from your perspective) helps no one and accomplishes nothing and you should have refused the interview if that's how you feel.
#10
Old 12-20-2016, 11:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koeeoaddi View Post
Could somebody summarize? No matter how prickish the guy is, I know if I click that link I'm going to hear "hey laaady..." all day long.
No "Hey ladiiieee" stuff. Just very terse answers to baseline questions.

Interviewer - Is Las Vegas different now than it was when you were first there? <-- keep in mind he was first there 70 years ago?
Jerry - No
Int - It's the same?
Jerry - Yes
Int - Would you say back then it was a dusty little town?
Jerry - Dusty little town
Int - Would you say it still is?
Jerry - No

That's paraphrased but pretty close. The whole seven minutes goes along like that.

My favourite bit was:

Int - Do you have any favourite stories about Dean or Frank Sinatra or others from back then?
Jerry - No
Int - Do you have any least favourite stories?
Jerry - No. Not for this.
#11
Old 12-20-2016, 11:38 AM
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"No-- with the GLOY-VEN!"
#12
Old 12-20-2016, 11:47 AM
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What a dick. I couldn't watch more than 2 minutes.
#13
Old 12-20-2016, 01:01 PM
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I watched just over a minute and then switched it off. I wasn't so irritated by Jerry as I was by the reporter and his inane questions. I would probably have been pissed off too in the same situation.

The most cringeworthy interview I've ever seen was one with Titanic survivor Eva Hart, who said at one point "Oh, what a silly question!" The interviewer was obviously not a professional reporter, and the whole thing sounded like a listening exercise for an EFL textbook.
#14
Old 12-20-2016, 01:11 PM
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In defense of the interviewer, you kind of need a little give and take in an interview. Start with a couple easy or quick questions and build from there. Lewis wasn't giving him anything in the interview, just terse, quick answers. How is an interviewer supposed to build a conversation when the interviewee isn't cooperative? The interviewer tried a few follow up questions but that didn't work either.

Maybe he did something to set off Lewis before the interview, I dunno. Why would Lewis agree to an interview and then come off all pissy anyway?
#15
Old 12-20-2016, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Intergalactic Gladiator View Post
In defense of the interviewer, you kind of need a little give and take in an interview. Start with a couple easy or quick questions and build from there. Lewis wasn't giving him anything in the interview, just terse, quick answers. How is an interviewer supposed to build a conversation when the interviewee isn't cooperative? The interviewer tried a few follow up questions but that didn't work either.

Maybe he did something to set off Lewis before the interview, I dunno. Why would Lewis agree to an interview and then come off all pissy anyway?
Yeah, there could have been something that set him off early. The hostility was very apparent. But I seem to recall reading somewhere that he's been a dick all his life.
#16
Old 12-20-2016, 01:58 PM
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The interviewer should have asked him what, IIRC, Larry King asking Tip O'Neill," How does it feel to be so close to meeting The Man?
#17
Old 12-20-2016, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
But I seem to recall reading somewhere that he's been a dick all his life.
He spent decades hosting the Muscular Dystrophy Association Labor Day telethon. Dicks don't make that kind of charitable effort.
#18
Old 12-20-2016, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by PastTense View Post
He spent decades hosting the Muscular Dystrophy Association Labor Day telethon. Dicks don't make that kind of charitable effort.
Apples and oranges. There are many examples of celebrity types who are one thing while "on" and something else, often nasty, when not on stage. Hosting a telethon that makes him a household name doesn't preclude being a dick the other 51 weeks of the year.
#19
Old 12-20-2016, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
Yeah, there could have been something that set him off early. The hostility was very apparent. But I seem to recall reading somewhere that he's been a dick all his life.
Growing up, Jerry Lewis was always notorious in my home. My father was a union rep in Chicago in the sixties for AGVA - The American Guild of Variety Artists.

A family story was that he had to meet Jerry Lewis' plane to take him to a performance, and Lewis told my dad that he needed to procure a girl for after the show. My dad explained that he was his union rep, not a pimp.

Last edited by gaffa; 12-20-2016 at 02:56 PM. Reason: link
#20
Old 12-20-2016, 03:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Amateur Barbarian View Post
Apples and oranges. There are many examples of celebrity types who are one thing while "on" and something else, often nasty, when not on stage. Hosting a telethon that makes him a household name doesn't preclude being a dick the other 51 weeks of the year.
Hosting it for decades and decades (and that wasn't what made Jerry Lewis a household name), long past (mostly) retiring as an actor and long after he needed to just to remain in the public eye, speaks a little about things that are important to him.

(That said, I couldn't get the video to play in Chrome, Edge, nor IE).
#21
Old 12-20-2016, 03:48 PM
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On the WTF podcast, Marc Maron recently played an interview with Jerry Lewis which was going well, and then halfway through the allotted hour Jerry basically said "OK, we're done", which threw Maron for a loop...he suspected he was overbooked for the day, and just decided he had had enough of talking about himself.

Last edited by zombywoof; 12-20-2016 at 03:49 PM.
#22
Old 12-20-2016, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by zombywoof View Post
On the WTF podcast, Marc Maron recently played an interview with Jerry Lewis which was going well, and then halfway through the allotted hour Jerry basically said "OK, we're done", which threw Maron for a loop...he suspected he was overbooked for the day, and just decided he had had enough of talking about himself.
Marc mentioned that he had asked Jerry's "people" to make sure WTF was his only interview that day. When Marc showed up USA Today was just wrapping up an interview and he apparently had other interviews before that. Perhaps this trainwreck was one of them? He (Jerry) was pretty good and open during the short interview though. Marc's a pretty good interviewer though, especially when he really likes the person he's talking to.
#23
Old 12-20-2016, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by D_Odds View Post
Hosting it for decades and decades (and that wasn't what made Jerry Lewis a household name), long past (mostly) retiring as an actor and long after he needed to just to remain in the public eye, speaks a little about things that are important to him.
Not necessarily a counter-argument. Doing something like this because of a personal interest or assumed obligation doesn't mean his being a dick elsewhere is inexplicable.
#24
Old 12-20-2016, 05:50 PM
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I have to say that he looks better than any 90-year old has a right to look. The last time I saw him was when he was all bloated up from the meds he was on.
#25
Old 12-20-2016, 05:56 PM
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He's always been cranky and prone to moods, and now he's 90, and the interviewer was a kid asking rookie questions that imply he has no idea who Jerry Lewis is other than maybe reading a Wiki entry and watching a YouTube clip. It was too perfect storm to have ended well.

My great-aunt who lived with me when I was a teenager was ordinarily the sweetest person on Earth, but she could get peeved in her 90s. Once was at a social worker- a 20 something fresh out of school condescending one of the type who might now be called a Social Justice Warrior- who came to check on her well being due to some anonymous report from someone who had never been in our house. Carrie (my aunt) heard this woman was from "the welfare", and as a survivor of the Depression who had seen next to no good come from "the welfare" she had no use for her. It was a similar interview (and again, usually Carrie was the sweetest of people and loved company):


Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrie and Social Worker
Me: Carrie, this is Ms. [Surname], and she would like to talk to you.
Social Worker (to me): So, you just call her Carrie? You don't call her Aunt Carrie? Why is that...
Me: Because... it's what I've called her since I was a baby. She's my father's aunt, we know how we're related.
Social Worker (to Carrie): Well you know, I all the older people in my family aunt, and uncle. That's respectful, don't you think, Aunt Carrie?
Carrie: Who's your mama.
SW: Um, her name is Bernice [surname]...
Carrie: And your daddy?
SW: His name is Jeff [surname]...
Carrie: How are me and you related?
SW: Oh, me and you aren't blood related, but...
Carrie: Then I don't reckon you should call me aunt anything.
SW: Well, I think that maybe he should...
Carrie: Are you gonna help me get into bed tonight?
SW: Uh... ma'am?
Carrie: Are you gonna help me get into my bed tonight?
SW: Oh, no ma'am, I'm not a nurse. I'm just here for a visit...
Carrie: Well he is [indicating me]. I reckon he can call me what he likes.

subject moves to age

SW: I hear you're 97. That's wonderful!
Carrie: No it's not.
SW: Well, don't you like being 97?
Carrie: No. I'm ready to go and be Mam and Papa and my sisters.
SW: But we need you here! We want you to live to be at least a hundred!
Carrie: Why?

[pause- pretty good question, really]

SW: Because... just think of all the things you remember. Like... I'll bet you remember horses and wagons don't you?
Carrie: Yes.
SW: Tell me about them!
Carrie: The horse pulled the wagon.

[pause]
Can I die now?
I'm 50 and I don't suffer fools as easily as I used to. I think he's somebody who wasn't nice when he was young and now has a near inability to, and at 90 it's not like he needs publicity or career help. He's going to sell out because he's Jerry Lewis, nobody's going to boycott one of his shows because of this, and if his shows tank he's not going to miss any meals or mortgage payments. If he has any fecks left to give they're for his family. (His sons who have discussed him pretty pretty much all say he's a major league prick but I think he's close to the daughter he adopted in his 60s.)

Last edited by Sampiro; 12-20-2016 at 05:58 PM.
#26
Old 12-20-2016, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
I have to say that he looks better than any 90-year old has a right to look. The last time I saw him was when he was all bloated up from the meds he was on.
He was a hard core prescription opiate addict for decades, which was probably one reason he was such an A-hole. The steroids that turned him into Baron Harkonnen got him off those, but then he was successfully treated with electronic pain relief that allowed him to get off the steroids. He said in an interview in his 80s that as an old man he was pain free for the first time since he was in his 30s.
#27
Old 12-20-2016, 06:24 PM
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I watched a minute of that miserable video. Prick, totally. If the reason for the prick attitude was that the interviewer somehow pissed Lewis off prior to tape rolling, I can only imagine it must have been something like: Interviewer walks into room and punches Lewis in the face so hard he drops him. Interviewer shouts "Get up old man, I aint done with you yet!" Lewis gets up on one knee saing "WTF?" Interviewer punches him in the face again and again drops Lewis. Lewis tells interviewer to leave, and interviewer kicks him in the gut, curling Lewis into a ball on the floor. Interviewer says "I'm not leaving till you answer my interview questions!" Lewis says "If I do your interview, you'll leave? Ask your questions." Roll tape.
#28
Old 12-20-2016, 06:31 PM
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Didn't read whole thread. The title caught my eye, so I dropped in to say:

I NEVER liked the man. NEVER thought he was funny in anything. I think he has always has a vaguely creepy air about him.
#29
Old 12-20-2016, 07:53 PM
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Other then one weekend a year when his name brings in money for charity he hasn't been relevant OR funny since the 60s. Him and his ego should pack it in and spend his final years in solitude. He surely don't need the money.
#30
Old 12-20-2016, 09:23 PM
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If I was the interviewer I would have had to stop myself from punching Lewis in the mouth.


mmm
#31
Old 12-20-2016, 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by PastTense View Post
He spent decades hosting the Muscular Dystrophy Association Labor Day telethon. Dicks don't make that kind of charitable effort.
They do if they're trying to shed their dickish reputation.
#32
Old 12-20-2016, 11:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Yookeroo View Post
They do if they're trying to shed their dickish reputation.
It's not even that. People are just complicated creatures. They can be both assholes and generous, simultaneously.
#33
Old 12-20-2016, 11:53 PM
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My dad's theory was that he had been shamed by someone with muscular dystrophy about his "spastic" act when he was younger and been made to feel guilty enough to try to atone.
#34
Old 12-21-2016, 01:54 AM
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Note to interviewer: When you're interviewing an old person, don't make every goddamn question about how old he is. Don't ask him to compare himself to other people ... all of whom are long-dead. Don't come off as someone who never even heard of the guy before, but looked him up on Wiki just prior to the interview. Don't treat an old guy as just an old guy, as if the only thing you know about him is that he's 90 years old. I admire Jerry Lewis for letting the interview continue as long as it did.
#35
Old 12-21-2016, 02:39 AM
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I am completely lacking in opinion about Jerry Lewis, but I really love the sound of Sampiro's Great Aunt Carrie. She doesn't do much in the "suffering fools gladly" department.
#36
Old 12-21-2016, 05:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Happy Lendervedder View Post
It's not even that. People are just complicated creatures. They can be both assholes and generous, simultaneously.
This cannot be overstated enough.

In the UK one of the most notorious criminals of recent times is radio DJ amd TV presenter Sir Jimmy Savile who during his life raised tens of millions for charity. One of his most well known stunts was to run marathons while aged into his sixties and seventies.

Yet he was also an incredibly industrious sex offender for sixty years or more raping and molesting young boys and girls, adults, old people, possibly even corpses in locations such as his home, in TV studios, prisons and especially hospitals attacking staff and patients.

No doubt one factor in doing the charity work was to provide him with a cover and bolster his 'untouchable' status. He was never bought to account in his long lifetime. But the truth is he had easier options than physically running marathons. The fact is he DID put a lot of effort into fund raising.

TCMF-2L
#37
Old 12-21-2016, 08:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Celyn View Post
I am completely lacking in opinion about Jerry Lewis, but I really love the sound of Sampiro's Great Aunt Carrie. She doesn't do much in the "suffering fools gladly" department.


Agreed! She sounds like a very neat lady.

Reminded me of a similar fictional episode, in Sanford and Son.

Redd's been hospitalised for some reason, and a social worker comes to interview him to see if he's losing it.

She asks him: " Who is your president, Mr Sandford?"

He replies: "Franklin Roosevelt."

She makes an "oh-oh" noise and some notes on her file, then says: "Franklin Roosevelt? Are you sure, Mr Sandford?"

Reds: "Yes. All the rest since then, you can have. FDR was my President!"
#38
Old 12-21-2016, 09:22 AM
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I'm torn. The interview was apparently part of a series with over-90 Hollywood types, with the thesis of the set being "Even though you are almost dead, why haven't you retired?"

I have to confess I'd probably give an interview like this under those circumstances.
#39
Old 12-21-2016, 09:36 AM
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On one hand, it WAS a pretty lame set of questions.

Still, Jerry acted like a jerk, and there was no need for that.

If he's just reached an age and a point in his life at which he doesn't want to do interviews any more, fine! He has the right to turn down all interview requests, and be left alone.

But if you DO accept an interview request, there's no excuse for being a dick.

Last edited by astorian; 12-21-2016 at 09:37 AM.
#40
Old 12-21-2016, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by aldiboronti View Post
He was pissed off right from the beginning because of the huge crew the interviewer brought with him, totally unnecessary these days. And when the interviewer started asking inane questions he let him have it with both barrels.

Good for Jerry.
Just cancel the interview if you're that pissed off. There is no reason, other than you're a egotistical prick, to treat other people like that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by panache45
Note to interviewer: When you're interviewing an old person, don't make every goddamn question about how old he is. Don't ask him to compare himself to other people ... all of whom are long-dead. Don't come off as someone who never even heard of the guy before, but looked him up on Wiki just prior to the interview. Don't treat an old guy as just an old guy, as if the only thing you know about him is that he's 90 years old. I admire Jerry Lewis for letting the interview continue as long as it did.
Why do old people get a pass for being dicks? The entire premise of the interview, the reason why they were there, was to interview people who were still working at 90+, so of course there are going to be questions about how old he is. If Lewis didn't want to answer those kinds of questions, which, again was the very subject of the interview, he shouldn't agree to the interview.
#41
Old 12-21-2016, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Hamlet View Post
Why do old people get a pass for being dicks?
Shhh, I'm just about to get old, and I'm practicing my "curmudgeon who's seen it all and doesn't give a rat's ass any more" schtick...
#42
Old 12-21-2016, 12:09 PM
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I got him solidly in my 2017 Dead Pool. C'mon Jerry, don't let me down, you crusted over little prick.
#43
Old 12-21-2016, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
subject moves to age

SW: I hear you're 97. That's wonderful!
Carrie: No it's not.
SW: Well, don't you like being 97?
Carrie: No. I'm ready to go and be Mam and Papa and my sisters.
SW: But we need you here! We want you to live to be at least a hundred!
Carrie: Why?

[pause- pretty good question, really]

SW: Because... just think of all the things you remember. Like... I'll bet you remember horses and wagons don't you?
Carrie: Yes.
SW: Tell me about them!
Carrie: The horse pulled the wagon.

[pause]
Can I die now?
I want Carrie to live to a hundred just so we can hear conversations like this.

Regards,
Shodan
#44
Old 12-21-2016, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamlet View Post
Why do old people get a pass for being dicks? The entire premise of the interview, the reason why they were there, was to interview people who were still working at 90+, so of course there are going to be questions about how old he is. If Lewis didn't want to answer those kinds of questions, which, again was the very subject of the interview, he shouldn't agree to the interview.
I'd guess that if he was ignored and felt that the entertainment industry had forgotten him, he'd be pissed.

And not what he's being interviewed as an old timer (which he clearly is) he's pissed.

Dick
#45
Old 12-21-2016, 12:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by panache45 View Post
Note to interviewer: When you're interviewing an old person, don't make every goddamn question about how old he is. Don't ask him to compare himself to other people ... all of whom are long-dead. Don't come off as someone who never even heard of the guy before, but looked him up on Wiki just prior to the interview. Don't treat an old guy as just an old guy, as if the only thing you know about him is that he's 90 years old. I admire Jerry Lewis for letting the interview continue as long as it did.
Hamlet beat me to it. If you don't want to answer questions about being 90 and still working don't agree to an interview about being over 90 and still working. It was for a documentary about people who are over 90 and still working. You see a theme here? He knew what he was getting into but decided to be a prick.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CandidGamera View Post
I'm torn. The interview was apparently part of a series with over-90 Hollywood types, with the thesis of the set being "Even though you are almost dead, why haven't you retired?"

I have to confess I'd probably give an interview like this under those circumstances.
Or how about just not give an interview? This wasn't an ambush. If it was a subject he didn't want to explore he just didn't have to agree to it.

To remind people this is how he treats fans who pay to see him.
https://vice.com/en_us/article/j...is-still-alive
#46
Old 12-21-2016, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Hamlet View Post
Just cancel the interview if you're that pissed off. There is no reason, other than you're a egotistical prick, to treat other people like that.

Why do old people get a pass for being dicks? The entire premise of the interview, the reason why they were there, was to interview people who were still working at 90+, so of course there are going to be questions about how old he is. If Lewis didn't want to answer those kinds of questions, which, again was the very subject of the interview, he shouldn't agree to the interview.
Absolutely. He is (was) famous. He is (probably) rich. He (probably) regularly has people fawning over him. So what. He was an absolute dick in this interview, from start to finish. And it doesn't appear to be due to dementia. He's just being an asshole. I wouldn't have been bothered if the interviewer stopped at about the 5-minute mark and said "Well, fuck you you old has-been. Go torment and badger the poor souls who work for you and have to put up with your bullshit." Or, start asking really awkward questions, like "Did Dean Martin have to get drunk before he let you suck his cock?"
#47
Old 12-21-2016, 10:16 PM
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I saw Jerry Lewis as a guest host, talking about things in between movies, on Turner Classic Movies one night not that long ago. He sounded pretty talkative then. TCM was showing some of his movies, maybe a couple that hadn't been seen on the channel before.
#48
Old 12-21-2016, 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by astorian View Post

But if you DO accept an interview request, there's no excuse for being a dick.
You never know. When I first saw the B.B. Thornton interview I thought he was being a dick. However when you read in to the backstory, you see why he acted so. Thornton acceded to the interview on the strict condition that it would be about the band and the music only, not about himself being a famous actor. Yet the first question out of the interviewers mouth is about Thornton being a famous actor. And that Giomesh asshole is acting all innocent, like, "what did I say?!???".
#49
Old 12-22-2016, 12:56 AM
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Originally Posted by PastTense View Post
He spent decades hosting the Muscular Dystrophy Association Labor Day telethon. Dicks don't make that kind of charitable effort.
Well, I can tell you a story about a group that raised a butt-load of money for this Shit-hook, and he totally blew them off, didn't let them on the show, didn't acknowledge the effort and was a dick-hole for good measure.

I guess I just did, kinda.
#50
Old 12-22-2016, 06:48 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2010
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Has he been an asshole all his life? If not, around what time/age did he start acquiring the asshole reputation?
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