Jack Carter

Active - 1962 - 2013  |   Born - Jun 24, 1923   |   Died - Jun 28, 2015   |   Genres - Drama, Comedy, Crime, Action, Adult

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Biography by Hal Erickson

Funnyman Jack Carter (as he is invariably billed) was a successful nightclub comedian when he decided to dive headlong into the infant medium known as television. In January of 1949, Carter was hired to host ABC's minstrel-show effort Pick and Pat. By the spring of that year, Carter presided over the ABC variety program Jack Carter and Company. Later that same year, he was the first emcee of the DuMont Network's Cavalcade of Stars, remaining with the series until being replaced by Jackie Gleason in 1950. His last "regular" TV assignment was as host of 1956's Stage Show, though he kept busy as a sitcom guest star into the 1980s, frequently playing abrasive con artists (e.g. "Friendly Freddie" on Gomer Pyle USMC). In 1971, Carter made his directorial debut with an episode of Lucille Ball's Here's Lucy. Jack Carter's movie roles have ranged from comedy relief to raffish villain in such pictures as The Extraordinary Seaman (1969), The Amazing Dobermans (1976) and The Funny Farm (1982). Carter continued to work steadily into his 90s, with guest appearances on shows like Desperate Housewives, Parks & Recreation, New Girl and Shameless. Carter died 4 days after his 93rd birthday, in 2015.

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