STAGE TUBE: President Obama Talks About Mel Brooks' Kennedy Center Honor
The Kennedy Center Honors medallions were presented on Saturday, December 5. The Honors Gala was recorded for broadcast on the CBS Network for the 32nd consecutive year as a two-hour primetime special on Tuesday, December 29 at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT).
Mel Brooks (Book, Composer & Lyricist). Director, producer, writer and actor, Mel Brooks is the recipient of three 2001 Tony Awards (Best Score, Best Book of a Musical, Best Musical) and two Grammy Awards (Best Musical Show Album and Best Long Form Music Video) for The Producers. Mr. Brooks began his distinguished career during television's Golden Age as a writer for Sid Caesaron "Your Show of Shows" in 1951. In 1955 and in 1957, Brooks received Emmy Award nominations (with others) for best comedy writing for "Caesar's Hour," and in 1956 he was nominated (with others) for best writing for a variety or situation comedy. In 1952, Brooks wrote sketches for Leonard Sillman's Broadway smash-hit revue, New Faces of 1952, and in 1957, together with Joe Darion, he wrote the book for the Broadway musical Shinbone Alley, which starred Eartha Kitt. In 1962, he wrote the book for the Broadway musical All-American, starring Ray Bolger.
In the 60s, Brooks teamed up with Carl Reiner to write and perform "The 2000 Year Old Man" albums, which became immediate bestsellers. In 1960 and 1961, Brooks and Reiner received Grammy Award nominations for the best spoken word comedy for "2000 Years" and for best comedy performance for "2000 and One Years," respectively. In 1997, Brooks and Reiner teamed up again for "The 2000 Year Old Man in the Year 2000." Both a book and CD were released, the CD winning a Grammy Award in 1998 for the best spoken word album: comedy. Brooks wrote and narrated The Critic, a short satire on avant-garde art films, which received the Academy Award for best animated short subject in 1964. In 1965, he teamed up with Buck Henryand created "Get Smart," the long-running television show starring Don Adams as Agent 86. Brooks, along with others, received an Emmy Award for outstanding writing achievement in a comedy-variety in 1967 for "The Sid Caesar, Imogene Coca, Carl Reiner, Howard Morris Special."
In 1968, he wrote and directed his first feature film, The Producers, starring Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder, which earned him an Academy Award for the best original screenplay written directly for the screen. He then went on to create a remarkable string of hit comedies: 1970, wrote, directed and acted in The Twelve Chairs; 1974, co-wrote, directed and acted in Blazing Saddles, and was nominated, along with John Morris, for best title song, "Blazing Saddles;" 1974, co-wrote and directed Young Frankenstein; 1976, co-wrote, directed and starred in Silent Movie; 1977, co-wrote, directed, produced and starred in High Anxiety; 1981, wrote, directed, produced and starred in History of the World, Part I; 1983, produced and starred in To Be or Not to Be; 1987, cowrote, directed, produced and starred in the hit sci-fi spoof, Spaceballs; 1991, co-wrote, directed, produced and starred in Life Stinks; 1993, co-wrote, directed, produced and starred in Robin Hood: Men in Tights; 1995, co-wrote, directed, produced and starred in Dracula: Dead and Loving It; 2005, co-wrote and produced The Producers, the film version of his Tony award winning 2001 Broadway musical and was nominated for a Grammy for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, "There's Nothing Like a Show on Broadway." For three successive seasons, Brooks won the Emmy Award for his role as Uncle Phil on the hit comedy show, "Mad About You." His visionary film company, Brooksfilms Limited, founded in 1980, has produced some of America's most distinguished films, among them: David Lynch's The Elephant Man, David Cronenberg's The Fly, Frances, Richard Benjamin's My Favorite Year and 84 Charing Cross Road, starring Anthony Hopkins and Anne Bancroft.