Today, an actor in one of my all-time favorite comedies died. Harvey Korman, who made his name on "The Carol Burnett Show" in the 1960s and 1970s, passed away in Los Angeles at the age of 81, after suffering from an aneurysm many months ago.
But he will be fondly remembered for his tremendous role as the evil Hedley Lamarr in the classic Mel Brooks comedy, "Blazing Saddles." It is one of the best comedy films of all time (in my humble opinion). Whenever anyone called him "Hedy Lamarr," he'd get indignant and exclaim, "No, that's Hedley!!" (The actress Hedy Lamarr actually sued Mel Brooks over the reference, and it was later settled out of court.)
One of my favorite Hedley lines from the film:
"You will be risking your lives, whilst I will be risking an almost-certain Academy Award nomination for the Best Supporting Actor. "
I certainly thought Harvey Korman deserved to win a Supporting Actor award for "Blazing Saddles," but it was not to be. But Mr. Korman did win four Emmy Awards for his work on "The Carol Burnett Show," as well as a Golden Globe.
I honor Mr. Korman's memory with one of my favorite scenes in "Blazing Saddles," when Hedley tells Taggart (Slim Pickens) he wants a large group of ruffians to attack the town of Rock Ridge. Here it is on YouTube. Thanks for the funny memories, Mr. Korman.