Chuck Barris, best known as host of the TV series "The Gong Show" and creator of "The Dating Game" and "The Newlywed Game," died Tuesday.
He was 87.
He passed away at his home in Palisades, New York, from natural causes, according to publicist Paul Shefrin.
As host of "The Gong Show," Barris introduced amateur performers to three celebrity judges, who could put a stop to terrible performances by striking the gong. Much like on "American Idol," awful performances became ratings smash hits. The TV show aired from 1976 to 1980.
While his shows were wildly popular, they were not a hit with critics. Barris was panned as the King of Schlock, Baron of Bad Taste and Ayatollah of Trasherola.
Apart from game shows, Barris found success as a writer. He penned six best-selling books and a 1962 pop song, "Palisades Park," which became a No. 3 hit in the US for Freddy Cannon.
Barris later wrote in his book "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind," that he worked as a CIA assassin while working in TV -- a claim denied by the agency. The book became a 2002 movie, directed by George Clooney. Sam Rockwell starred as Barris, and the cast included Julia Roberts, Drew Barrymore and Clooney.
Wednesday, Mar 22nd 2017 (11:17am) | Thanks: Kyndi
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Chuck Berry, who with his indelible guitar licks, brash self-confidence and memorable songs about cars, girls and wild dance parties did as much as anyone to define rock 'n' roll's potential and attitude in its early years, died on Saturday. He was 90.
Another bright spot in the blogosphere is no more. Gerard Vlemmings of Tilburg, Netherlands, ran his blog The Presurfer for over 16 years. Less than a month ago, he stopped his daily postings due to illness, which proved to be cancer. His last post was on February 17, and a couple of days ago, his nephew Fam commented to let us know that Gerard passed away on Saturday, February 25th and his funeral service is tomorrow. I cannot find an online obituary, but that may be due to the language barrier. Gerard was 67. He will be sorely missed.
Judge Joseph Wapner, of the popular reality television program "The People's Court," died at age 97 on Sunday at his home in Los Angeles, California, according to his son, Los Angeles County Judge Fred Wapner. He died of natural causes.
The famed judge taped more than 2,000 episodes of "The People's Court" during his 12-year tenure on the program, inspiring decades of similar courtroom shows, including "Judge Judy" and "Judge Joe Brown."
Sunday, Feb 26th 2017 (10:33pm)
The innovative, mercurial and brilliant jazz singer Al Jarreau has passed away today 12 February 2017. It was announced on the singer's web site where it says, "Al Jarreau passed away today. He will be missed. A few days ago, I was asked to describe Al to someone who knew of his success, but did not know him as a person. I responded with this: His 2nd priority in life was music. There was no 3rd. His 1st priority, far ahead of the other, was healing or comforting anyone in need. Whether it was emotional pain, or physical discomfort, or any other cause of suffering, he needed to put our minds at ease and our hearts at rest. He needed to see a warm, affirming smile where there had not been one before. Song was just his tool for making that happen."
Sunday, Feb 12th 2017 (1:48pm)
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John Wetton, a progressive rock figurehead who performed in bands such as King Crimson, Uriah Heep, and Roxy Music before leading the supergroup Asia in the 1980's, has died following a battle with cancer. He was 67 years old.
Tuesday, Jan 31st 2017 (11:32am)
John Hurt, the esteemed British actor known for his burry voice and weathered visage - one that was kept hidden for his most acclaimed role, that of the deformed John Merrick in David Lynch's The Elephant Man - died Friday in London. He was 77.
Saturday, Jan 28th 2017 (6:59am)
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Television icon Mary Tyler Moore died Wednesday at the age of 80, the actresses longtime rep confirmed.
"Today, beloved icon, Mary Tyler Moore, passed away at the age of 80 in the company of friends and her loving husband of over 33 years, Dr. S. Robert Levine," Mara Buxbaum, Moore's publicist said in a statement. "A groundbreaking actress, producer, and passionate advocate for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Mary will be remembered as a fearless visionary who turned the world on with her smile."
TMZ reported Moore was suffering from "a number of health problems."
Moore recently celebrated her 80th birthday at the end of December.
She was best known for her starring roles in "The Dick Van Dyke Show" and "The Mary Tyler Moore Show."
She won seven Emmy awards over the years. She also was nominated for an Oscar for her 1980 portrayal of an affluent mother whose son is accidentally killed in "Ordinary People."
Wednesday, Jan 25th 2017 (12:01pm)
Another moonwalker has passed. Gene Cernan, the last man on the moon, died today in a Houston hospital. He was 82. Details were not readily available at press time, but reports say he was with relatives at the time of his passing.
Tuesday, Jan 17th 2017 (2:03am)
Tony Rosato, former cast member of Saturday Night Live and SCTV has passed away. The Toronto Star confirmed today that Canadian-born Tony Rosato - who was a cast member at SNL in the early 80's after a stint on season 3 of SCTV - died last night reportedly from a heart attack. The news was announced by Rosato's girlfriend Tanya Moore on his Facebook page earlier today. Rosato was 62 years old.
Thursday, Jan 12th 2017 (4:12am)
Naturally, 2016 had to leave us one parting shot, taking Father Mulcahy (William Christopher) with it. And that is not counting anyone who may have died Saturday and we haven't yet learned about their death.
William Christopher was an American actor, best known for playing Father Mulcahy on the television series M*A*S*H and Private Lester Hummel on Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.
Sunday, Jan 1st 2017 (4:40am)
Global singing sensation George Michael has died on Christmas Day, aged 53. Police are describing the death as "unexplained but not suspicious". They said paramedics attended his home in Goring in Oxfordshire at 1:42pm today - where he was declared dead at the scene.
Sunday, Dec 25th 2016 (7:34pm)
Zsa Zsa Gabor, whose 60-year career of playing herself helped paved the way for today's celebrity-obsessed culture, has died. She was 99. She had been on life support for the last five years, and according to TMZ, which first reported the news, she died of a heart attack.
Sunday, Dec 18th 2016 (6:29pm)
Alan Thicke, a Canadian singer, songwriter and actor best remembered for his portrayal of a father who was the ultimate suburban middlebrow dispenser of advice to his children on the television sitcom "Growing Pains," died on Tuesday. He was 69.
His death was confirmed by the talent agent Nigel Mikoski, who represented Mr. Thicke. He died of a heart attack, Carleen Donovan, a publicist for one of his sons, the singer and songwriter Robin Thicke, said in an email.
Wednesday, Dec 14th 2016 (12:38am)
Looks like this one slipped under my radar until now. Actor Ron Glass, who is best known for his role as Detective Ron Harris on the comedy show Barney Miller has died at the age of 71.
Tuesday, Nov 29th 2016 (10:28pm)
Florence Henderson, who played the cheerful mom in the 1970s sitcom The Brady Bunch, has died, her manager told the Associated Press. She was 82.
Kayla Pressman said in a statement late Thursday that Henderson passed away surrounded by family and friends. Entertainment Tonight reported that she died from heart failure, surrounded by her four children.
Henderson started off in musicals in the 1950s and performed on Broadway.
Friday, Nov 25th 2016 (12:55am)
Gwen Ifill, the trailblazing former moderator and managing editor of Washington Week and co-anchor and co-managing editor of PBS NewsHour, has died after a cancer battle Politico has confirmed. Ifill was 61.
In October 1999, Ifill became the moderator of the PBS program "Washington Week in Review." She was also senior correspondent for the PBS NewsHour. Ifill has appeared on various news shows, including "Meet the Press."
Monday, Nov 14th 2016 (11:32am)
Southern rock icon Leon Russell, famed for his flowing white hair, ever-present hats and unpolished voice, died Sunday morning in his sleep at his Nashville home. He was 74.
No cause of death was given on his official website and Facebook page, but the singer, songwriter and musician had suffered a heart attack in July and underwent bypass surgery, forcing him off the road to recuperate.
Sunday, Nov 13th 2016 (3:55pm)
What's the most useful button on your remote control?
Nothing! Player's off!
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2016)
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