"Because nobody on social media cares about or knows who the hell he is. To people my age, he's known as the guy who monopolized CBS affiliates all Labor Day weekend with his telethons for muscular dystrophy. To my dad's generation, he teamed with Dean Martin to be as big as the Beatles or Elvis.... But what isn't known is his influence in film[m]aking to legends from Spielberg, Tarantino, Eddie Murphy, just to name a few. He influenced me greatly 'look what Jerry Lewis does---he helps these folks out, and its a big person who gives back when they don't have to.' It's a huge reason why I try to get involved and help out as many wonderful non-profits (on a 1/100000th scale) it's important to give back. Its too bad as time goes on, he is slowly being forgotten. Happy 90th birthday, Mr. Lewis!"
Writes Andy Garcia.
It's funny, I read that just after writing a post about John Wayne's upcoming non-milestone birthday and, earlier this morning, having a discussion with Meade about another post — about the movie comedy that will depict Ronald Reagan with Alzheimer's disease — that including the use Jerry Lewis as an example. I was defending comedy that reaches into subjects that are not funny at all, not because I like everyone making light of what is serious, but because I recognize the special genius involved in successful transgression. Not that everyone agrees about what has been successful.
From "Enfant Terrible!: Jerry Lewis in American Film":
ADDED: AT&T's U-Verse — my cable service — is showing 2 and only 2 Jerry Lewis movies today. Why no Jerry Lewis marathon? They're the 2 movies I'd most want to see if I was going to binge-watch Jerry — "The Nutty Professor" and "The Disorderly Orderly." But, still, there should be a lot more — weirder choices, harder-to-find, harder-to-appreciate things.