Entertainment Magazine Profile

Rip's Entertainment!


BY PAISLEY YANKOLOVICH

In the spirit of the musical magic created by the MGM retrospective films "That's Entertainment 1, 2 and 3", the Debbie Reynolds Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas is currently presenting THEIR glowing tribute to the popular musicals of the Golden Age of Hollywood, "That's Entertainment! Live!". At this time, comedian extraordinaire Rip Taylor is acting as host/master of ceremonies to the clever and vibrant production. Here's what he said in a recent interview...

PAISLEY: Do you live in Vegas now?

RIP: Actually, I live at the hotel. It's easier and I get to stay in Debbie's hair that way.

PAISLEY: When did you first meet Ms. Reynolds?

RIP: 25 years ago she gave me a job and I am still paying her back.

PAISLEY: You're part owner here. What made you go into the hotel biz?

RIP: This way Debbie and I will always have some place to work for the rest of our careers. (He never laughs at his own jokes so I never know when he is kidding) We keep the stage open, there's always something being offered to our guests. No glitz, no tits, just quality entertainment.

PAISLEY: And Debbie?

RIP: She is truly the definition of the word friend.

PAISLEY: Who was your greatest influence?

RIP: Red Skelton. I broke into tears when I met him. He said, "why are you crying?" I said, "because I'm meeting RED SKELTON".

PAISLEY: What do you think about today's young comedians?

RIP: Some I like, some I don't. The one's I hate are the one's who steal from me but don't give me credit. Like Carrot Top. I gave him advice once and he ran with it. He should thank me. You know, recently I was in a car accident, a head on collision, hit and run. I was supposed to be on the
Tonight Show but I broke my shoulder instead. Isn't it ironic that Carrot Top broke his leg at the same time? Ha! Two frop comics out of commission! What's the world to do?

PAISLEY: How are you feeling now?

RIP: I have a broken shoulder Paisley, how do you think I feel? When I was recuperating, Bill Cosby called me every day. I'd pick up the phone, he'd tell me one joke and then hang up! That meant a lot.


Besides completing his run as host of "That's Entertainment! LIve!" and enjoying the successful video releases of recent films "Indecent Proposal", "Wayne's World 2" and "Silence Of The Hams", Rip is off to L.A. to co-host the Psychic's Friends Network with Dionne Warwick. He also has a few tv pilots in the works AND a play opening in Phoenix in June it's called "Let Her Rip".

As for "That's Entertainment! Live!" it's wonderful. Totally unlike anything one expects to see in Vegas, it has a gentle unassumingness to it that allows us to sit back and enjoy the wonderful clips and the extremely talented performers who do live renditions of some of our most favorite cinema memories.

Even though the Ripster is taking off, the show runs indefinitely and is a must-see for anyone who is a fan of the "That's Entertainment" movies-or movies in general. Debbie Reynolds (who returns to the hotel April 1-her birthday) has made great strides in preserving some of the best parts of entertainment history. From her Hollywood Museum to "That's Entertainment! Live!" to the hotel itself that holds one of this writer's most fond memories:

while I did not cry (Are you kidding? Do you have any idea what this man would have done to me?), meeting the amazing King of Confetti Rip Taylor is something I will never forget.


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