Sunday, September 3 at 10PM ET/9PM CT on getTV
getTV will honor the memories of legendary comedy stars Jerry Lewis, who past away August 20 at age 91, and Dick Gregory, who past away August 19 at age 84, with a special programming bloc of television appearances by Lewis, Gregory and other comic superstars. Lewis who rose to fame as singer/straight man Dean Martin’s partner, then went onto write, produce and direct himself in a run of successful slapstick comedy films while raising money and awareness for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Gregory was a groundbreaking African-American standup comedian and satirist who became a leading figure in in the civil rights movement of the 1960s.
Jeff Meier, GM & EVP Programming for getTV said, “As someone who grew up watching Jerry Lewis’ MDA telethon every year, I feel it’s especially fitting for getTV to be airing this salute to the late comic genius over Labor Day weekend. And for audiences unfamiliar with Dick Gregory’s special brand of comedy, we’re providing an opportunity to see him in his prime, along with other comedy legends, including Groucho Marx, Dick Van Dyke, Lucille Ball, Woody Allen, Richard Pryor and Jerry Seinfeld.”
The tribute will kick off with “The Friars Roast Jerry Lewis,” a 60-minute special first telecast on NBC’s “Kraft Music Hall” series in 1971, hosted by Johnny Carson and featuring a lineup of famed comedians, including Milton Berle, Alan King, Jack Carter, Charlie Callas and Don Rickles (who who past away earlier this year), skewering good sport Lewis, all for laughs.
Following at 11PM ET/10 C is a 1966 episode of “The Merv Griffin Show” with appearances by Lewis and an early-career Richard Pryor and musical guests The Everly Brothers.
At midnight ET/11 PM C, getTV will air a 1968 episode of “The Merv Griffin Show” with frequent guest Dick Gregory, along with pop songstress Dionne Warwick and actress-TV personality Kitty Carlisle.
getTV’s celebration of comedy superstars will continue at 1AM ET/12 midnight C with a 1968 “Kraft Music Hall” special, “The Friars Club Roasts Johnny Carson,” hosted by Alan King, and featuring Groucho Marx, Ed McMahon, Steve Allen, Dick Cavett, Flip Wilson and Ed Sullivan; followed at 2AM ET/1AM C with a 1986 episode of “The Merv Griffin Show” in which Merv’s guests were Jerry Seinfeld, along with Justine Bateman (“Family Ties”) and Kevin Dobson (“Knots Landing”).
At 3AM ET/2AM C, getTV will air a 1976 “Van Dyke and Company” show pairing Dick Van Dyke with “the first lady of television comedy,” Lucille Ball, for the one and only time in their legendary careers. getTV’s comedy programming bloc concludes at 4AM ET/3AM C with another “Kraft Music Hall” special, this one entitled “Woody Allen Looks at 1967” which first aired in December of that year with the future Oscar-winning filmmaker/writer/comedian welcoming “the Queen of Soul,” Aretha Franklin, Oscar/Emmy/Tony winning singer-actress Liza Minnelli, comedian John Byner and political author-commentator William F. Buckley Jr.