TV tonight: AFI Lifetime Achievement Award: A Tribute to Mel Brooks


WASHINGTON, July 24, 2013Tonight at 8 p.m. on TCM the stars come out in force to honor Mel Brooks with the AFI Life Achievement Award. The special looks at Brooks’ personal and film history and features a parade of guest stars that include Billy Crystal, Larry David, Robert De Niro, Jimmy Kimmel, Cloris Leachman, Conan O’Brien, Amy Poehler, Carl Reiner, Martin Scorsese, Martin Short and Sarah Silverman.

The highest honor for a career in the movies, the American Film Institute bestowed the honor on Brooks during a black-tie gala held in Hollywood on June 6. Martin Scorsese, a past recipient of the award, presented the award before a crowd of Brooks’ peers that included some of the biggest names in Hollywood.

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Woody Allen, Clint Eastwood, George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Whoopi Goldberg, and Gene Wilder also weighed in via video to sing the praises of Brooks.

Past recipients of the AFI honor include Elizabeth Taylor, Kirk Douglas, Eastwood, Spielberg, Lucas, John Ford, Hitchcock, Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Al Pacino, Morgan Freeman, Sidney Poitier, Jack Nicholson and Sean Connery. Presenting Brooks the 41st award puts him in the company of the best, and rightfully so.

The award was established by the Board of Directors of the American Film Institute on February 26, 1973 to honor a single individual for his or her lifetime contribution to enriching American culture through motion pictures and television. Brooks’ body of work certainly enriched American culture and gave us some of the most iconic moments in the history of film making along the way.

For those of us that grew up on such films as “Blazing Saddles,” “Young Frankenstein,” “Robin Hood: Men in Tights” and “The Producers,” Brooks will always be the king of satirical comedy. For those who haven’t witnessed the genius of Brooks, maybe it’s time you did, because even his worst films are a lot better than what passes for comedy today.

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Tonight when Brooks takes the stage to accept his award, don’t be surprised if he utters one of his most famous lines of all time; “It’s good to be the king.” Well done Mr. Brooks.

Tonight’s viewing: 

All times are EDT:

8 p.m.

ABC: The Middle: (Repeat) While dressed in a lab coat for her dental assisting job, Frankie is mistaken for a doctor and receives special treatment; Axl talks Sue into ditching school for the day; Mike and Axl’s fishing trip goes awry.

CBS: Big Brother: (New) The Power of Veto competition is held.

FOX: MasterChef: (Repeat) The remaining home cooks create original sausage dishes.

NBC: America’s Got Talent: (New) Twelve acts perform at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

CW: Arrow: (Repeat) Oliver is shot and turns to Felicity for help. While he hovers between life and death, Oliver recalls a daring escape attempt with Slade Wilson on the island.

TCM: AFI Lifetime Achievement Award: A Tribute to Mel Brooks: (New) Mel Brooks receives the American Film Institute’s 41st Life Achievement Award at a ceremony recorded June 6, 2013, in Hollywood. Appearing: Martin Scorsese.

8:30 p.m.

ABC: Suburgatory: (Repeat) Feeling guilty about keeping the truth from Ryan, Lisa agrees to help him with Tessa; Dallas invites her life coach along on her first date with George; Tessa baby-sits with Opus.

9 p.m.

ABC: Modern Family: (Repeat) Phil gets a new RV for a fun family road trip; Jay and Gloria search for Manny’s backpack; Lily’s gymnastics meet brings out Cam and Mitch’s competitive spirit.

CBS: Criminal Minds: (Repeat) The unit investigates when four men go missing in rural Oregon and tries to determine what the common link is between them. Meanwhile, J.J. gets upset when her son doesn’t want to celebrate Halloween.

NBC: America’s Got Talent: (Live) A results episode.

Fox: MasterChef: (New) The remaining contestants compete in a “hunger games” challenge.

CW: Supernatural: (Repeat) The eighth season ends with Crowley poised to undo all of the good that Sam and Dean have accomplished as hunters. But the Winchester brothers try one final play against the Demon King. Meanwhile, Metatron gets Castiel to help him take on Naomi and the bureaucracy of heaven.

9:30 p.m.

ABC: The Neighbors: (Repeat) When the whole Weaver family comes down with a cold, the Bird-Kersees — especially Larry — are terrified and confused. 

10 p.m.

ABC: ABC’s The Lookout: (New) A survival guide to the modern consumer jungle includes ways to maximize value and avoid mistakes.

CBS: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation: (Repeat) Sara becomes the lead suspect in a murder investigation due to a brief encounter with the victim.

NBC: Camp: (New) Little Otter hosts the annual mixer with Camp Ridgefield - hijinks ensue!

PBS: Nazi Mega Weapons: (New) Examining the concrete submarine pens built by the Nazis to protect their U-boats from Allied bombs.

Basic cable:

New episodes of:

Chef Roblé & Co. at 8 p.m. on BRAVO

BBQ Crawl at 8 p.m. on Travel Channel

Here Comes Honey Boo Boo at 8, 8:30, 9 and 9:30 p.m. on TLC

How the Universe Works: Expanded Edition at 9 p.m. on SCI

Million Dollar Listing New York at 9 p.m. on BRAVO

Royal Pains at 9 p.m. on USA

Paranormal Witness at 9 p.m. on Syfy

Franklin & Bash at 9 p.m. on TNT

Love Thy Neighbor at 9 and 9:30 p.m. on OWN

Futurama at 10 p.m. on Comedy Central

Top Chef Masters at 10 p.m. on BRAVO

The Bridge at 10 p.m. on FX

Top Shot All-Stars at 10 p.m. on History Channel

Southern Fried Homicide at 10 p.m. on ID

Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman at 10 p.m. on SCI

Inside Secret America at 10 p.m. on NGC

Necessary Roughness at 10 p.m. on USA

Hot in Cleveland at 10 p.m. on TVLAND

The Exes at 10:30 p.m. on TVLAND

For movie lovers:

8 p.m.

Blood Diamond on AMC

The Vow on ENC

Crimes of the Heart on FLIX

The Cheshire Murders on HBO

Hostel on IFC

Virgin Tales on SHO

Lust, Caution on SUND

Die Another Day on TMC

9 p.m.

Die Hard on CINEMAX

Gulliver’s Travels on FXM

Rock of Ages on MOMAX

Traffic on SHO

Later tonight:

The Twelve Chairs at 9:30 p.m. on TCM

Intolerable Cruelty at 9:30 p.m. on SHO

Hitch at 9:50 p.m. on ENC

Georgia at 10 p.m. on FLIX

Mr. & Mrs. Smith at 10 p.m. on HBO

Saw at 10:15 p.m. on TMC

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Lisa King

I was born and educated in Southwest Virginia, traveled with my job all over America in my twenties and early thirties then came back to the mountains to raise my daughter.

I’ve been employed as everything from a quality control technician in industrial construction, to a mail processing plant manager, to postmaster of a small town. I’ve been to forty nine of the fifty states, as well as many other countries. Traveling will always be a passion I indulge, and something I’ll call upon often in my writing. 

I come from a long line of story tellers, and will shamelessly exploit a family tree resplendent with colorful and unique characters, both past and present.

In short my perspective will reflect the pride and familiarity I have of my Appalachian heritage. My stories will be a reflection of the values I believe we hold dearest here, all embellished with a healthy dose of Southern Appalachian flare.


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