Comedian Dom DeLuise dies

May 5, 2009 11:14:04 AM PDT
Lovable comedian and cook and Brooklyn native Dom DeLuise died Monday night in a Los Angeles hospital. He was 75. DeLuise was born in Brooklyn and graduated from Manhattan's High School of Performing Arts. While appearing on Broadway, he starred in a couple television shows, including one with Carol Burnett and Bob Newhart, and another with Rowan and Martin. Two years later, he was hosting The Dom DeLuise Show. He met director Mel Brooks, and his film career went into high gear. Brooks cast him in The Twelve Chairs (1970), Blazing Saddles (1974), Silent Movie (1976), History of the World -- Pt. I (1981), and Robin Hood: Men in Tights (1993).

Meanwhile, actor Gene Wilder gave the pudgy funster rolls in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother (1975) and The World's Greatest Lover (1978). And Mel Brooks' wife, Anne Bancroft, finally gave DeLuise his own roll in 1980's Fatso.

But DeLuise's best moments were as Burt Reynolds' manic sidekick in The End (1978) and the Cannonball Run flicks.

His most recent work was voice-overs to such animated fare as Oliver and Company (1987), An American Tail (1987), All Dogs Go to Heaven (1989), and A Troll in Central Park (1994).

DeLuise also found success in his later years in a venue that fit his large frame -- cookbooks. The titles included Eat This ... It'll Make You Feel Better, Eat This Too! It'll Also Make You Feel Better, and The Pizza Challenge.


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