ABC watching comedians language
Tuetday, May 19, 1987
NEW YORK (UPI) – Susan Futterman, censorwoman at ABC, has an unenviable job this week. It is herÂ r e s p o n s i b i l i ty to p r o t e ct t he American publ ic f r om prof ani ty, l u s ty l a n g u a ge a nd o f f – c o l or remarks during the American Comedy Awards.
With the likes of Robin Williams, Whoopi Goldberg, George “seven d i r ty words” C a r l i n, Sam “the Screamer” Kinison, and “Bad” Bob Goldthwait cracking jokes, she has her work cut out for her. “We have an ABC censor, SusanÂ Futterman, who will be sitting in master control with a bleep button in her lap,” says George Schlatter, producer of “The American Comedy Awards ,” a i r i ng live f r om t he Hollywood Palladium, today from 9-11 p.m.
“She will have one hand on the bleep button and hopefully another hand on a martini.”
With comedy coming back strong on t he n e t w o r k s, in c l u bs a nd especially on cable television, it wasÂ only a matter of time before someone cooked up tlie idea for yet another nationally televised awards s h o w. B utÂ t h is Â p r o m i s es to be different.
First, and foremost, there will be no awards for key grip, makeup, editing, or other behind-the-scenes folks. Even better, there is no speech from a trustee, no Academy of Arts, Science and Comedy to please, for the simple reason that there is no such beast.
These a w a r ds are for the performers, voted on by performers, and accepted by performers. Say Amen.
U n l i ke t he O s c a r s, E m m y s, Grammys and Tonys, there will be no production numbers and no long s e l f – c o n g r a t u l a t o ry speeches. If e v e r y t h i ng w o r ks a c c o r d i ng to Schlatter’s plan, there will be comedy, comedy and comedy. “The pe r forme rs for this show have to come out and be funny,” Schlatter said.
“That’s a lot more dangerous than wearing an evening gown and earrings and saying thank you to mom and dad.”
S c h l a t t er k n o ws of w h a t he speaks. He produced the first five Grammy shows before deciding that he didn’t want to do that anymore. “It became/very cumbersome, as you still see. There were just too many craft awards.
“This is a two-hour show. This is not going to run over. The presenters are comics, the clips are comedy and the acceptance speeches are comedy. This is not encumbered by the trustees award and the president of the academy making a speech.
This is a TV show acknowledging the contribution of performers in the comedy field,” Schlatter said. “I just hope it’s funny.” One award is a l r e ady decided. Norman Lear, one of the most successful television producers of the 1970s with such programs as “All in the Family” and “Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman” to his credit, will receive the only award given to a non-performer, for a lifetime of contributions to the field of comedy.
And now for the nominees:
Funni e st male in a TV series.- J o h n n y C a r s o n, T ed D a n s o n, Michael J. Fox, Pee-Wee Herman, David Letterman.
Funniest female in a TV series: Bea Ar t h u r, J u l ia Duf fy, Estelle Getty, Shelley Long, Betty White.
Funniest male in a movie: Woody Allen, Rodney Dangerfield, Danny DeVito, Tom Hanks, Steve Martin.
F u n n i e st f e m a le in a m o v i e: Whoopi Goldberg, Ellen Greene, Goldie Hawn, Bette Midler, Dianne Wiest.
Funniest TV star in a special â€” male or f ema l e: Carol B u r n e t t, George Carlin, Billy Crystal, Garry Shandling, Robin Williams.
Funniest record and-or video â€” m a l e , f e m a l e or g r o u p : D an A y k r o y d, GeorgeÂ C a r l i n, Whoopi G o l d b e r g, St eve M a r t i n, B e t te Midler.
Funniest newcomer â€” male or female: Alf, Mark Linn-Baker, Roseanne Barr, Woody Harrelson, SamÂ Kinison.
Funni e st male stand-up comic: Billy Crystal, Jay Leno, Eddie Murp h y , R i c h a r d P r y o r, R o b i n Williams.
Funniest female stand-up comic: Elayne Booster, Whoopi Goldberg, Bette Midler, Joan Rive r s, L i lyÂ Tomlin.
Funniest male performer of the year: Woody Alien, Jay Leno, David Le t t e rman, Eddie Murphy, RobinÂ Williams.
Funniest female performer of the y e a r: C a r ol B u r n e t t , W h o o pi
G o l d b erg, Â B e t te M i d l e r, Â L i ly Tomlin, Betty White.
L i f e t ime achievement awa rd â€”Â male: Steve Allen, Woody Allen, MelÂ B r o o k s,
S id C a e s a r, Â J o n a t h anÂ Winters.
L i f e t ime achievement award â€” female: Lucille Ball, Carol Burne t t, Bette Midler, Mary Tyler Moore, Lily Tomlin.