Carl Reiner

Carl Reiner is an American comedian, director and publisher whose career spans seven decades. During the early years of television comedy from 1950 to 1957, he co-wrote and acted on Caesar's Hour and Your Show of Shows, starring Sid Caesar. In the 1960s, Reiner was best known as the creator, producer and actor on The Dick Van Dyke Show. Reiner famously formed a comedy duo with Mel Brooks in "2000 Year Old Man" and acted in films such as It's a Mad, Mad, World, The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming and the Ocean's film series, he had great success as a film director and writer and in the 1970s and 1980s. He directed some of Steve Martin's most successful films, including The Jerk, he directed notable comedies such as Where's Poppa?, Oh, God!, All of Me. Over his long and distinguished career, Reiner has won many awards and honors including, nine Emmy Awards, one Grammy Award, The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, he is the father of actor and director Rob Reiner and author Annie Reiner and the grandfather of Tracy Reiner.

Reiner was born in The Bronx, New York, on March 20, 1922, to Irving, a watchmaker, Bessie Reiner. His parents were Jewish immigrants, his older brother Charlie served in the 9th Division in World War II and his ashes are buried at Arlington National Cemetery. At age 16, Charlie read in the New York Daily News about a free dramatic workshop being put on by the Works Progress Administration and told Carl about it His uncle Harry Mathias was the first entertainer in his family. In 1943, Reiner was drafted into the Army Air Forces and served during World War II achieving the rank of corporal, he had trained to be a radio operator, but after spending three months in the hospital recovering from pneumonia, he was sent to Georgetown University for ten months of training as a French interpreter. In 1944, after completing language training, he was sent to Hawaii to work as a teleprinter operator; the night before he was scheduled to ship out for an unknown assignment, he attended a production of Hamlet by the Special Services entertainment unit.

Following an audition for actor and Major Maurice Evans, he was subsequently transferred to Special Services. Over the following two years, Reiner performed around the Pacific theater, entertaining troops in Hawaii, Saipan and Iwo Jima until he was honorably discharged in 1946. Reiner had the lead role in Call Me Mister. In 1950, he was cast by Max Leibman in Sid Caesar's Your Show of Shows, appearing on air in skits while working alongside writers, such as Mel Brooks and Neil Simon. Reiner worked on Caesar's Hour with Brooks, Woody Allen, Larry Gelbart, Mel Tolkin, Mike Stewart, Aaron Ruben, Sheldon Keller, Gary Belkin. Starting in 1960, Reiner teamed with Brooks as a comedy duo on The Steve Allen Show, their performances on television and stage included Reiner playing the straight man in 2000 Year Old Man. The routine expanded into a series of 5 comedy albums and a 1975 animated television special, with the last album in the series winning a Grammy Award for Spoken Comedy Album; the act gave Brooks "an identity as a comic performer for the first time," said Reiner.

Brooks's biographer, William Holtzman, called their 12-minute act "an ingenious jazz improvisation...", while Gerald Nachman described Reiner's part in guiding the act: The routine relies on the team's mental agility and chemistry. It's heresy to imagine Brooks performing it with any other straight man. Reiner was a solid straight man to Caesar, but with Brooks he is the second-banana supreme...guiding his partner's churning comic mind. In 1959, Reiner developed a television pilot titled Head of the Family, based on his own personal and professional life. However, the network did not like Reiner in the lead role for unknown reasons. In 1961, it was recast and re-titled The Dick Van Dyke Show and became an iconic series, making stars of his lead actors Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore. In addition to writing many of the episodes, Reiner appeared as temperamental show host Alan Brady; the series ran from 1961 to 1966. In 1966, Reiner co-starred in The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming.

On The Dick Van Dyke Show, he began his directing career. After the series ended its run, his first film feature was an adaptation of Joseph Stein's play Enter Laughing, which, in turn, was based on Reiner's semi-autobiographical 1958 novel of the same name. Balancing directing, producing and acting, Reiner has worked on a wide range of films and television programs. Films from his early directing career include Where's Poppa?, Oh, God!, The Jerk. In one of his memoirs, he writes, "Of all the films I have directed, only Where's Poppa? is universally acknowledged as a cult classic. A cult classic, as you may know, is a film, seen by a small minority of the world's film goers, who insist it is one of the greatest, most daring, innovative moving pictures made. Whenever two or more cult members meet, they will quote dialogue from the classic and agree that'the film was ahead of its time.' To be designated a genuine cult classic, it is of primary importance that the film fail to earn back the cost of making and distributing i

Russ Hunt

Russell W. "Russ" Hunt, Jr. is an American former basketball player. He is known for his collegiate career at Furman University between 1970–71 and 1972–73. During Hunt's sophomore and junior seasons he was a First Team All-Southern Conference selection while the latter season saw him be named the Southern Conference Player of the Year; that year, he led the SoCon in scoring at 22.5 points per game as well as field goal percentage with 52.6%. Hunt was named to the 1972 All-SoCon Tournament Team. For his career, Hunt scored 1,248 points, he led the Paladins to two NCAA Tournaments and garnered five SoCon Player of the Week awards during his three seasons. The Chicago Bulls selected him in the 1973 NBA Draft but he never ended up playing professionally

Mannequin Skywalker

Mannequin Skywalker is an oblique reference to Star Wars fictional character Anakin Skywalker, through substitution of his first name "Anakin", with a similar sounding word, "Mannequin". Mannequin Skywalker may refer to: Hayden Christensen, who played Anakin Skywalker in the Star Wars Prequel Trilogy, criticized for being a pretty boy with wooden acting, resulting in the nickname "Mannequin Skywalker" Jake Lloyd, who played Anakin Skywalker in the Star Wars prequel Episode I The Phantom Menace, criticized for wooden acting, resulting in the nickname "Mannequin Skywalker" Kanye West, a rapper and a fan of Obi-Wan Kenobi carries the nickname "Mannequin Skywalker" Blue Origin Mannequin Skywalker, a test dummy used aboard a Blue Origin New Shepard space capsule SpaceX Starman, a test dummy seated in a cherry red generation one Tesla Roadster launched into solar orbit aboard the first Falcon Heavy rocket Mannequin Skywalker