HK and Cult Film News's Fan Box

Sunday, November 28, 2010

R.I.P. Leslie Nielsen

Leslie Nielsen, gone?  Surely you can't be serious.

The 84-year-old Canadian-born actor who made his name in serious roles before becoming a surprise comedy legend with AIRPLANE! and the NAKED GUN films has passed away due to complications from pneumonia. 

Best known by many sci-fi fans from his starring role in the classic FORBIDDEN PLANET, Nielsen was a familiar face not only in films but in his many television appearances, often as a hard-bitten cop.

Spoofing this image in the Zucker brothers' smash laugh-fest AIRPLANE!, he proved to be even more adept at comedy than drama and became one of the most popular comic stars of all time (while giving us one of the most oft-quoted lines in film history: "I am serious...and don't call me Shirley.") 

He followed up this newfound success with the hilarious NAKED GUN trilogy (based on his short-lived cult TV series "Police Squad!") in which he played bumbling police detective Lt. Frank Drebin.  Other films in the same vein included SPY HARD, WRONGFULLY ACCUSED, and the recent STAN HELSING.

While fondly remembered for his dramatic work, his absence will be felt most keenly in the world of comedy where he scored such a triumphant comeback late in his career.  We here at HKCFN offer condolences to his family and friends and bid an affectionate farewell to one of our favorite funny men.  And, surely, we are serious.


1 comment:

CVB said...

I know most people remember his comedic roles, but I'll always remember him in his dramatic roles... I love his work in Night Gallery, Forbidden Planet and other dramas... FYI: You can watch his "Night Gallery" episodes on Hulu....