Classic Entertainment Autographs

Cat. #0032322: DICK SHAWN

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Highly rare vintage 8x10-inch black and white still from The Wizard of Baghdad (1960), boldly autographed in-person in blue felt-tip pen in the 1960s, with the signing details recorded on the verso by the original collector. Like Sheckey Greene and Guy Marks, Dick Shawn was a nightclub comedian whose talents were highly prized by the members of his profession, but who took quite some time building up a fan following with "civilian" audiences. Beginning his film career with a peripheral role in The Opposite Sex (1956), Shawn signed a contract with 20th Century Fox in 1960. He starred in an Arabian Nights satire, The Wizard of Baghdad (1960), which may have been too "inside" for fans of that genre.  After co-starring with Ernie Kovacs in Wake Me When It's Over (1961), Shawn was generally seen in secondary comic roles in such films as It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963) and What Did You Do in the War, Daddy? (1966). He was hysterically funny in Mel Brooks' The Producers (1967), starring as the erratic hippie L.S.D. who is cast as a singing Fuehrer in the sure-fire-hit "Springtime for Hitler". Elsewhere, he was seen to best advantage in his bizarre, stream-of-consciousness nightclub routines which were so quirky and unpredictable that, when he died of a heart attack while performing before a college crowd in San Diego, many members of the audience assumed his collapse was part of the act and laughed right through his passing.  He was only 63.