Comedian Lewis Recovering From Heart Attack
Still plans to direct Broadway musical version of 'Nutty Professor'
Comedy legend Jerry Lewis had a "mild" heart attack on Sunday, prompting him to postpone a live performance he had scheduled for July in Las Vegas, report news sources. He is also feeling a "touch of pneumonia."
"At present, he is under hospital care and is expected to make a full recovery," says Candi Cazau, spokeswoman for the Orleans hotel-casino. Lewis was on the schedule to perform July 13-16.
Lewis, 80, suffers from diabetes and pulmonary fibrosis, a lung ailment that has inhibited his live performance schedule for the past five years. Just last week, he appeared in moderately good health at a news conference to announce his Vegas act and his intention to direct a Broadway musical version of "The Nutty Professor" by October 2008.
According to executive producer Ned McLeod of The Michael Andrew Company, which bought the rights to develop the show, those plans are still in motion.
"We support and will be by Jerry on any health issue that comes up for him as well as he would for me or Michael," McLeod says. "It's not going to affect us."
In the 1963 film version of "Nutty Professor," Lewis plays the nerdy Professor Julius Kelp who creates a potion that turns him into the suave but womanizing Buddy Love. The outrageously dweebie professor character inspired the character Professor Frink on "The Simpsons." The film was also remade in 1996 starring Eddie Murphy as an overweight professor who slims down after quaffing the potion.