Don Rickles will get an all-star tribute from an impressive lineup of comedic celebrities such as Jimmy Kimmel, Bob Newhart, and Jerry Seinfeld next month. Robert De Niro, David Letterman, Tracy Morgan, Regis Philbin, Ray Romano, Martin Scorsese, John Stamos, and Jon Stewart are also slated to appear at the event.
The 90-minute tribute titled One Night Only: An All-Star Comedy Tribute to Don Rickles will be taped on May 6 at the Apollo Theater, a New York City landmark located in Harlem. The show will air May 28 on Spike Network.
“The genius of Rickles is in the danger, nobody is safe, and what you can expect is a night of comedy from these superstars worthy of a legend. It truly will be One Night Only,” said Casey Patterson, Executive Producer and Executive Vice President, Event Production & Talent Development, Viacom Entertainment Group, which owns Spike.
— SPIKE TV (@SpikeTV) April 17, 2014
Rickles, a native of Queens, will turn 88 on May 8.
Barbara and I went to dinner the other night and saw Elton John – he wanted me to autograph his glasses.
— Don Rickles (@DonRickles) March 17, 2014
Early on, Rickles abandoned his dreams of becoming a serious actor to hone his nightclub act. In 1957, Frank Sinatra saw the act at Slate Brothers in Los Angeles and quickly became Rickles’ champion.
It wasn’t long before Rickles had caught the attention of Dean Martin and Johnny Carson and was headlining performances in Las Vegas.
”My humor is so over the top you’d have to be an awful fool to think I’m embarrassing you,” Rickles said in a 1996 interview with The New York Times. ”When I pick someone from the audience, their eyes say, ‘I can take it.’ But if I’m wrong, I’ll never let them know it. When you sell yourself you just can’t back down. I absolutely believe that. You’ve got to stay with what got you to the dance. It’s an old expression but true.”
Happy 49th anniversary to dear friends Barbara & @DonRickles – a great couple – many more years to both!
— Larry King (@kingsthings) March 17, 2014
Rickles and his wife Barbara celebrated their 49th anniversary in March. They’re the parents of two children, Larry and Mindy. Mindy followed in her father’s comedic footsteps.
My daughter @MindyRickles is now doing stand-up. As if I don't have enough trouble, now I have to worry about 2 reviews.
— Don Rickles (@DonRickles) February 17, 2014
I learned from the best!@DonRickles
— Mindy Rickles (@MindyRickles) March 19, 2014
One Night Only is a relatively new annual event on Spike. The first installment, which aired in 2012 and paid tribute to Eddie Murphy, remains the highest rated show in the network’s history.
Image via YouTube