Monday, November 29, 2010

Leslie Nielsen, 1926-2010

"Surely the reports of your death can't be serious!"
"They are serious. And don't call me Shirley."

By now you've probably heard the reports of the death of actor Leslie Nielsen, who died yesterday in Florida at the age of 84. Nowadays, Nielsen is probably best known for the second half of his career, when spoofs like Airplane! and the Naked Gun movies made him a star thanks to his deadpan delivery of highly memorable comedic material. As one wag on Twitter put it:

Leslie Nielsen died today at a Florida Hospital. It's a big building with doctors and patients, but that's not important right now. RIP.

That having been said, Nielsen did start his acting career doing serious work. Forbidden Planet might not exactly be considered serious today, but it's certainly a cut or two above all the other sci-fi movies being made in the 1950s. Nor, I suppose is The Poseidon Adventure, in which Nielsen played the ship's captain. But then, Nielsen also made movies like Glenn Ford's Ransom!.

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