Synopses & Reviews
The French love the man; America loves this noholds-barred life of the uncomfortably funny Nutty Professor himself
Jerry Lewis is -- by his own admission -- an American icon. He has been the highest-paid performer in history in film, on TV, and (in 1995!) on Broadway. A direct influence on giants from Woody Allen to Jim Carrey, today he has become a billion-dollar fundraiser -- and, arguably, one of the best-known faces on earth. And, as Eddie Murphy's Lewis-backed remake of The Nutty Professor shows, he isn't through with us yet.
Shawn Levy's thorough and witty biography made news in 1996 for its frank portrait of the clown and his demons, and was singled out by voices from USA Today to People as a landmark life. From his salad days with Dean Martin, to the trough of pain, pills, and depression he suffered in the 1970s, the book paints Lewis with a mix of candor and understanding, leaving us with a man to whom there is no neutral response. Love him or hate him, King of Comedy proved the point Jerry Lewis always seemed to be making himself: He deserves our attention.
"A model of what a celebrity bio ought to be -- smart, knowing, insightful, often funny, full of fascinating stories". -- Los Angeles Times