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The Mad, Mad, Mad Comedians

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Genre  Animated television special
First episode date  April 7, 1970
Language  English
Country  United States
7.6/10 IMDb

Music director  Maury Laws
Language  English
The Mad, Mad, Mad Comedians httpsiytimgcomvisjp9em8uQlUhqdefaultjpg

Director  Jules Bass Arthur Rankin, Jr.
Release date  April 7, 1970 (1970-04-07)
Writer  Romeo Muller (special material)
Network  American Broadcasting Company
Directors  Jules Bass, Arthur Rankin, Jr.
Executive producer  Arthur Rankin, Jr., Jules Bass
Similar movies  Willy McBean and his Magic Machine (1965)

The Mad, Mad, Mad Comedians (1970) is an animated one-hour ABC television special produced by Rankin/Bass. The show aired on April 7, 1970 before the airing of that year's Oscars. It was a tribute to early vaudeville, and featured animated reworkings of various famous comedians' acts.


Production and Marx Brothers

Most of the comedians provided their own voices for their animated counterparts, except for Chico and W. C. Fields, both deceased, Zeppo who had left show business in 1933, and Harpo also deceased, but no voice was needed for him since his stage persona did not speak. Groucho was still playing himself. Voice actor Paul Frees narrated the show and filled in for those actors who were not able to do their own voices.

The show included such segments as a Marx Brothers skit, which was a reworking of a scene from their Broadway play I'll Say She Is (1924). The skit included their famous Napoleon parody, with Napoleon played by Groucho. The sketch featured animated representations. Romeo Muller is credited as having written special material for the show in addition to the original scripts that came from the various comedians' sketches.

Although not really remembered now by the general public, at the time it gave Rankin/Bass their highest TV ratings, notably even higher than the high-rated Rudolph. More recently, Behr Entertainment was in talks to produce a similar show that would feature cartoon renditions of Jack Benny, George Burns, Abbott and Costello, and Bob Hope. 13 half-hour episodes were proposed.


  • Jack Benny - Himself
  • George Burns - Himself
  • Phyllis Diller - Herself
  • George Jessel - Himself
  • Jack E. Leonard - Himself
  • Groucho Marx - Napoleon/Himself
  • The Smothers Brothers - Themselves
  • Flip Wilson - Himself
  • Henny Youngman - Himself
  • Paul Frees - Chico Marx, Zeppo Marx, W. C. Fields, Traffic Cop, additional voices
  • Joan Gardner - Josephine Bonaparte, additional voices
  • Crew

  • Producers/Directors – Arthur Rankin, Jr., Jules Bass
  • Special Material – Romeo Muller
  • Flip Wilson Segment Courtesy – Atlantic Records
  • Caricatures – Bruce Stark
  • Continuity Design – Don Duga
  • Animation Production – Mushi Productions
  • Animation Supervisor – Steve Nakagawa
  • Animation – Osamu Dezaki, Sadao Miyamoto, Akio Sugino (all uncredited)
  • Editorial Supervision – Irwin Goldress
  • Title Song – Maury Laws, Jules Bass
  • Music – Maury Laws
  • References

    The Mad, Mad, Mad Comedians Wikipedia
    The Mad, Mad, Mad Comedians IMDb