Ellen DeGeneres to Get Mark Twained

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The Kennedy Center announced today that Ellen DeGeneres will be the 15th recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. The foundation’s chairman explained the choice: “Through her television programs, stand-up appearances, movies, and even commercials, her special brand of humor has allowed us to find hilarity in the mundane and has kept us laughing for years.” Movies? I guess they felt that Mark Twain would’ve loved Mr. Wrong. Watching her Tonight Show clip helped me remember that Ellen was and is an incredibly gifted stand-up, who has since transitioned to have quite a career for himself. She responded to the “honor” with this statement: “To get the same award that has been given to people like Bill Cosby, Tina Fey and Will Ferrell, it really makes me wonder… why didn’t I get this sooner?” Zing! Take it down a notch, El DeGens, you already won the award. Below is a list of the previous winners. Who do you think is going to win next year? Here are my guesses: Johnny Carson, Woody Allen, Mel Brooks.

1998 – Richard Pryor

1999 – Jonathan Winters

2000 – Carl Reiner

2001 – Whoopi Goldberg

2002 – Bob Newhart

2003 – Lily Tomlin

2004 – Lorne Michaels

2005 – Steve Martin

2006 – Neil Simon

2007 – Billy Crystal

2008 – George Carlin

2009 – Bill Cosby

2010 – Tina Fey

2011 – Will Ferrell