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Overview for Ed Wynn
Ed Wynn

Ed Wynn


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Also Known As: Isaiah Edwin Leopold Died: June 19, 1966
Born: November 9, 1886 Cause of Death: cancer of the neck
Birth Place: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA Profession: Cast ... actor producer playwright vaudevillian hat salesman utility boy


Hugely popular vaudeville and Broadway comedian who, after being boycotted by the Shuberts for organizing an actor's strike, continued his success by writing and producing his own shows. Billed as "The Perfect Fool" after the title of one of his Broadway shows, Wynn was known for his trademark zany hats, misfit clothes, oversized shoes, lisping speech, fluttering hands, squeaky giggling and his exit line, "I'll be back in a flash with more trash." Progenitor of a topsy-turvy career, Wynn conquered radio with his first-time broadcast of a full-length comedy show to a radio audience in 1922 and followed with his own popular radio series as the Texaco "Fire Chief" (1932-35). He pioneered in combining his comedy routines with spoofs of the sponsor's commercial messages. Primarily a visual comic, he reemerged in the following decade as a popular figure in the new medium of television, winning the first Emmy Award as Most Outstanding Live Personality. In the late 50s, after having appeared in only a handful of films, Wynn began a successful career as a character actor, playing his first dramatic role in "The Great Man" (1956) and following with an Oscar-nominated performance as the Dutch dentist in "The Diary of Anne Frank" (1959). He alternated dramatic roles with the comedies "Cinderfella" (1960), "The Absentminded Professor" (1961) and "Mary Poppins" (1964). Father of actor Keenan Wynn (1916-86) who co-starred with him in "The Great Man" and the 1956 Rod Steiger teleplay "Requiem for a Heavyweight."

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