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Jerry Lewis Drops F-Bomb During Telethon

9/4/2007 1:49 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Click to return to TMZ.comA woozy Jerry Lewis, 81, went all Isaiah Washington on his telethon last night, calling someone -- or something -- an "illiterate fag."

In the midst of a typically Lewis-ian rant in the 18th hour of his Labor Day telethon, France's favorite comedian swayed, trying to dodge the cameraman, then introduced a "family member" as "the illiterate fag," then remembered, seemingly, that he was on live TV ... stopped himself and tried to move on.

The MDA telethon raised a record $63 million for muscular dystrophy over the three-day weekend.

After scolding us for calling so early (it's not like he dropped an offensive slur or anything!), a rep for Lewis had no comment on the incident.

UPDATE: Neil Giuliano, President of Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), has just issued the following statement to TMZ: "Jerry Lewis' on-air use of this kind of anti-gay slur is simply unacceptable. It also feeds a climate of hatred and intolerance that contributes to putting our community in harm's way. Our nation's media have done an admirable job this year holding public figures accountable for their use of anti-gay slurs, and I hope they continue to do so with Mr. Lewis."

Giuliano told TMZ that GLAAD is reaching out to Lewis' representatives today to request a meeting with him. "We want to sit down with him," Giuliano tells us, "help him understand why these words are so hurtful, and give him an opportunity to raise public awareness about the destructive impact of these kinds of anti-gay slurs, even more so in attempted humor."


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Jerry Lewis is a crass, uncouth, bigot known across show business as an arrogant phony. Check with the MDA television crew if you don't believe it. He's a hated man and one annual telethon (for which he is paid) cannot wash away his ickiness. He makes my skin crawl.

2605 days ago


Just another closet case

2605 days ago


i actually thought he was gonna say illiterate fatty

2605 days ago

Old Timer    

Lets face it, Jerry is a senile old fart and senile old farts say and do stupid things. Just "shoot the messenger" but not the message.

2605 days ago


"the piece of trash is making a great living with his water work tears. screw Jerry Lewis."
So what, if he made a comment...his organization --this year--received over 68MILLION in donations to go toward fighting MD. How much have you given Lubby126? What proof do you have that he is "getting rich"? That's what I thought. Go back in your 1972 Travelaire and hush up.

2605 days ago


He seems to put out his hand on something in front of the camera or on the camera. I may be incorrect, but it looks like small doll that he is referring to?

Either way, old guys say lots of stuff that the PC 2007 world will forever try to stop...good luck...go back and review old footage of the "Rat Pack" and you will see how most of that generation of men spoke....I really don't see it as anything but a "Yikes" kinda moment. We all have grandparents, uncles, etc who say really embarrasing stuff. If we were lucky he would of farted afterwards and said pull my finger.

2605 days ago

Lenn K.    

kk, listen to yourself, if you give him a break you should have gave Isiah Washington a break. Fair is fair, who knows what's IW has done for kids.

2605 days ago

rabbit in red    

Yeah for Jerry Lewis! He calls them as he sees them!

2605 days ago


R28 is correct. Have friends in the industry that say that for the most part, Jerry Lewis is a huge insufferable phony. His comment is intolerable. And posters in this thread who are defending him are just as intolerable. This f-word is just as unacceptable as the n-word.

2605 days ago


Lewis recently said Merv Griffin deserved to this awful rant. He needs help!

2605 days ago


So what? If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen. If you're one, why does it offend you to hear it?

2605 days ago


When did that turn into the "f-bomb"?

2605 days ago


Leave Jerry alone. He is old, sick and still is doing what is close to his heart, the kids. If he used the F word, oh wow, ghee , I think most of us have used that word before. Stop making a big deal out of this and give the man credit where credit should be, his untiring devotion to a cause. To the people who are digging digging for stuff this is one story I won't buy. SallyBe

2605 days ago


Hey give Jerry a break that was nothing! It is his act like at a Friar's Club Roast....Hope you live to be 110 Jerry.

Oy Vey take a chill pill people.

2605 days ago


This is news? He's a comedian. Not every comment someone makes should be analyzed as an anti-gay agenda.

Relax, people.

2605 days ago
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