Jerry Lewis - Details


JERRY LEWIS has spanned five decades and continues to thrive. Throughout his life, he has touched the lives of millions, whether they are laughing at his films, gaining insight from his classes, or receiving much needed money from his Labor Day telethons. In his '70s Lewis is still going strong, having recently taken his Damn Yankees production on a sold-out national tour and doing what he does best...making people smile.

Lewis was born into a show business family in Newark, New Jersey, and by the age of 15 was already honing his very own comedy act. At 18, he met Dean Martin and the pair teamed up to become arguably the best comic duo in entertainment history. Producers at Paramount Pictures signed the two men to a film contract upon seeing them perform at the Copacabana. For the next ten years, Lewis and Martin made 16 movies together, sandwiched between their numerous nightclub appearances and television bookings.

In 1956, Lewis signed his own film deal with Paramount for 14 films over a seven year period. He began to direct, and soon started his own company, Jerry Lewis Productions. Over the following 15 years, Jerry Lewis Productions was the most successful production house of its time, churning out countless hits including The Bellboy, Cinderfella, The Ladies Man, The Nutty Professor, The Big Mouth, Three On A Couch, The Patsy and Which Way To The Front?

For the past three decades Lewis has tirelessly worked with children inflicted with Muscular Dystrophy. This dedicated work based upon his Labor Day telethon and the awareness and funding it raises for the disease has garnered Lewis many accolades, including a nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize, the Murray-Green Award for Community Services from the AFL-CIO, a U.S. Senate award for humanitarianism and the Jefferson Award for the Greatest Public Service Benefiting the Disadvantaged.

He has served as a full professor of drama and film direction at USC, written his autobiography and patented the "video assist," which is used on virtually every movie set today.

In 1994, Lewis starred in Hollywood Pictures' Funny Bones, and in 1995 he fulfilled on of his life-long dreams, starring in the Broadway production of Damn Yankees. Immediately following The Nutty Professor in 1996 on which Lewis served as executive producer, the tireless comedian returned to the stage, taking Damn Yankees on a national tour.


  • 16th March 1926 - Birth