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Kathie Lee to Martin Short

How's Your Wife ...

Who Died 2 Years Ago

5/30/2012 10:47 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

053012_martin_short_today_launch
It might be the most cringeworthy few seconds in TV history -- Kathie Lee Gifford asked Martin Short how his wife is doing ... one small problem ... she died 2 years ago.

Martin appeared on "The Today Show" this morning to promote his new movie, "Madagascar 3" -- when Kathie asked, "And you and Nancy have one of the greatest marriages of anybody in show business. How many years now for you guys?"

Martin doesn't know how to respond, saying, "We ... have ... married ... 36 years."

Apparently Kathie didn't get the memo -- Martin's wife Nancy Dolman died in August 2010 from ovarian cancer.

0530_martin_short_nancy_getty
The clip gets even worse -- you have to watch.

Kathie later apologized on the air -- saying, "I feel so badly ... my apologies to him and his family."

342 COMMENTS

No Avatar
181.

drummer girl    

hey , Kathie lee, why don't you drink less and do some research on your guest, before opening your mouth,

846 days ago
182.

virtualelvis    

..like the time she asked James Taylor how his brother Alex was. James didn't let her off the hook so easily.

846 days ago
183.

MickeyMouff    

I'm sorry, tweeting an apology is wrong, just wrong wrong wrong!!!!!!!!! (Read in another article.)

PICK UP THE DANG PHONE AT LEAST.

I don't have a problem with her making the mistake because commentators/hosts rely on good intel from writers and producers (not that I'm excusing her mistake necessarily.) but c'mon, REALLY?!?
A tweet????

BZZZZZZZZZTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I hate the digital generation. With social media, humankind has lost its graces.

846 days ago
184.

Gabrielle    

Martin Short is always a class act. He had the grace and decorum to not say anything on public tv and what I find heartwarming is that he still remains devoted to his late wife. Any person who has love in their heart, never dies.

846 days ago
185.

Jinko    

When she goes in this week for her Botox and fillers this week she should request a brain transplant.

846 days ago
186.

cokeandpilates    

Martin Short handled the comment with class and grace, but there is no excuse!! Her apology was pretty weak. The man lost his wife two years ago and I'm sure it still feels like yesterday. The last thing he needs is a classless functioning alcoholic asking him how his marriage is. I want to punch Kathie Lee in the throat more than I usually do!

846 days ago
187.

WetWillie    

The talentless,out of touch,crass hunk of flesh walked into her dressing room screaming for someone's head you can bet. Some poor intern who handed her the dummy cards lost their gig and she had another glass of wine!

846 days ago
188.

KET    

Not only did she not bother to do any reseach on the person she was interviewing but her questions make it seem like she is so close to them as a couple--"How's Nancy? You two are so wonderful together" kind of stuff. Pathetic. But, I gained a lot of respect for Martin Short, who was enough of a class act trying to answer the questions without embarrassing her o making her look bad. Frankly, it is inexcusable. She should be FIRED.

846 days ago
189.

Jody    

Dear God….talking about not looking outside of your own world.

846 days ago
190.

daisy     

as crazy and unbelievably annoying as she is, well done for apologizing on air - it actually did get news coverage at the time, and her staff should have made sure she knew. Martin Short was SO gracious and sweet to not say it in the interview - well done both of them.

846 days ago
191.

GabyO    

Get some professionals, obviously someone doesnt check their facts.

846 days ago
192.

steve    

What an idiot. There are people employed by the TV shows who are supposed to have half a brain. They must've taken a sick day.

846 days ago
193.

Grouchy Marps    

It's easy to understand Kathie Lee's mistake. Her husband's been deceased for about 10 years now and doesn't know it yet.

846 days ago
194.

Ren    

Hmmm... my husband just asked, "So the secret to a happy marraige is a dead wife?!"

846 days ago
195.

Carl    

DID YOU SEE HER TWITTER!?!?! She tagged him, but it's not his account! It's SPAM!

846 days ago
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