Jerry Lewis, the brash slapstick comic who teamed with Dean Martin in the 1950s and later starred in "The Nutty Professor" and "The Bellboy" before launching the Muscular Dystrophy telethon, has died in Las Vegas. He was 91.
Over the past 10 years of his life, the cranky icon's reputation soured as he was forced to apologize for making a gay slur on camera during the 2007 telethon, continued to make racist and misogynistic jokes into his '90s, and didn't hesitate to share his right-wing political views.
Held in high regard in France, he received the Legion of Honor award in 1983.
“The Nutty Professor” (1963) was his biggest success ever, grossing $19 million. But by then his mugging and exaggerated body gyrations had become out of control, as had the syrupy moments in his films.