Dallas VideoFest is proud to award comedian and former US Senator Al Franken, best known for his work on the NBC staple, “Saturday Night Live,” with the coveted Ernie Kovacs Award at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, at the Texas Theatre (231 W. Jefferson Blvd. – Oak Cliff/Dallas). Immediately following the Kovacs event, DVF will show the 2006 documentary, AL FRANKEN: GOD SPOKE. VIP meet-and-greet reception with Al Franken and; event and film at Texas Theatre.
To purchase tickets, go to http://VideoFest.org.
Ernie Kovacs has been a key component of the Dallas VideoFest since the Festival began in 1987. Franken will be on hand to receive the award from Dallas VideoFest’s Founder and Artistic Director Bart Weiss. Joshua Mills, son of Edie Adams and keeper of the Kovacs flame, will also attend.
Of course, Al Franken
Throughout the 15 years Franken was associated with “Saturday Night Live” starting with the very first show in 1975, he wrote, performed in and produced hundreds of sketches, including the well-known and often recited “Daily Affirmations with Stuart Smalley.” Franken won five Emmys for writing and producing during his 15 seasons with “SNL.”
Al Franken on learning he would be the recipient of the 2022 Ernie Kovacs Award:
“Ernie Kovacs’ influence on comedians of my generation is not often told these days. I was maybe ten years old when I first watched ‘The Ernie Kovacs Show.’ Like many young avid fans of comedy, I was immediately struck by his wholehearted and brilliant embrace of absurdity. The Nairobi Trio, for example, was nothing like anything anyone had ever seen. Many comedians today talk about the tremendous influence of David Letterman and Conan O’Brien – and deservedly so. Both have inspired today’s generation of comedians in the same way that Kovacs inspired me and so many others. I am humbled that the Dallas VideoFest is honoring me with The Ernie Kovacs Award. I’m not sure I deserve it.”
Bart Weiss, founder/artistic director of Dallas VideoFest, on the importance of Ernie Kovacs:
”The very first program of our festival in 1987 was Edie Adams showing the work of Ernie Kovacs. Ernie’s innovative spirit has been with us these 35 years. The Kovacs Award became the perfect way to honor those whose comedy change the way we look at TV/Video much like Kovacs did.
“One can draw a very clear line between Ernie Kovacs’ characters like Percy Dovetonsils and Al Franken’s Stuart Smalley. Both understood how to harness the power of TV comedy to help us see the world differently.
“Yes, Al, we obviously think you are good enough, smart enough and doggone it people like you.”
Joshua Mills, Edie Adams’s son and keeper of Ernie Kovacs Estate:
“Al Franken’s humor, his dry wit and his irreverent characters are part of a long comedy continuum that connects everyone and everything from Ernie Kovacs to Monty Python to David Letterman, Conan O’Brien and others who helped shaped modern comedy. From Stuart Smalley to Medieval Barber Theodoric of York, it’s about time we usher in the Al Franken Decade in 2022 with The Ernie Kovacs Award.”