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Naked Gun and Airplane Director on Leslie Nielsen: ‘He Never Broke Character’

David Zucker penned a very sweet tribute to his late friend and colleague: "Offscreen, he wasn't much of a joke or storyteller but a chronic prankster. The stories are legion about the fart machine, which he kept hidden and sprang on any hapless stranger who approached him. He used it on set, on talk shows, anywhere he could find a victim. And just like the scenes we put him in, he never broke character, never let on that he knew he was being funny ... Leslie got the biggest kick out of his newfound status as a comedy icon — almost as though that, too, was some kind of prank he had pulled. But mostly, he just really loved to laugh. Maybe that's why he was so happy, and so good at making everyone else happy." [HR]