Jul 11, 2006
The Zero Mostel bio-play Zero Hour, featuring Jim Brochu, at Hollywood's Egyptian Arena Theatre, looks and sounds like fun. But I was startled to read in Deborah Klugman's LA Weekly review that it's set "in 1962 shortly before the comedian's death." I know from his essential work in The Producers (1967) and his memorable appearance on The Muppets (some time in my '70s childhood) that this date had to be wrong, so I looked it up. Imdb tells us that Mostel died in 1977, at the age of 62, leaving the world a poorer, quieter place.
I never had the privilege of seeing the great man onstage, but I remember sitting next to a woman at a Reprise! performance some years ago who said, in possibly a slight exaggeration, that Mostel's not being cast in the film version of Fiddler was a "crime against humanity." Against humor-anity, certainly.
Posted by Rob Weinert-Kendt at 1:47 PM