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December 2, 2010 - Karin Elton
In 1980, the female members of my family and I went to see the movie, “Airplane!” I guess we were in the mood to see a comedy, but we weren’t prepared for the comedy we saw: A little girl ordering coffee and saying she’ll have it “black, like my men.” Barbara “June Cleaver” Billingsley speaking Jive. Robert Stack taking off his sunglasses and revealing another pair underneath.
And Leslie Nielsen imploring a stewardess to stop calling him “Shirley.”
My family and I laughed and laughed at that movie — mostly at Nielsen.
And then he made the Naked Gun movies which are filled with memorable one-liners. Sometimes he didn’t even have to talk to be funny as when his body microphone was still on and Queen Elizabeth and other dignitaries could hear him in the bathroom for the longest time.
Shirley, I mean Leslie, Nielsen died earlier this week at the age of 84, but left a long legacy of dramatic and comedic roles behind him.
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