She gets a lifetime achievement honor during the Screen Actors Guild Awards tonight, January 30th. Carol Burnett certainly deserves it and not just for making us laugh every Saturday night for 11 years on CBS with her marvelous hour-long variety show. On Broadway, on TV and on film, she has proven to be one of our most versatile entertainers. She sings, she makes you laugh and she has strong dramatic skills. Carol Burnett is so versatile and she's made hard work look like so much fun that her accomplishments outside of the TV box probably escaped some people. I think one such person was film critic and published Hollywood historian Neal Gabler. During a personal appearance, he pretty much told us folks in the audience that Carol Burnett had no right to be an Academy Awards presenter that month. I felt...and still feel...that Carol Burnett had earned the right to be on that Oscars telecast.
If Carol Burnett was good enough to be directed by Martin Ritt, Billy Wilder, Robert Altman and John Huston...she was good enough to stand on a stage in 1983 and announce the winner of the Oscar for Best Picture of 1982. In Academy Awards telecast history, Carol is one of the few women to be the solo presenter of the Oscar for Best Picture.
Carol Burnett has won Emmys, Golden Globes, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Mark Twain Award for American Comedy presented at the Kennedy Center. I bet even Neal Gabler would be impressed by all that.