Jack Benny's widow, Mary Livingstone Benny, wrote this sympathetic biography of her famous husband, along with Hilliard Marks and Macia Borie. Jack Benny is best remembered for his famously inept violin playing, his carefully constructed image as a penny-pincher, and for never being older than 39.
Jack Benny was born Benjamin Kubelsky in Chicago, Illinois, on February 14, 1894, and was raised in Waukegan, Illinois. He began in Vaudeville as a violin player after serving in the US Navy during World War I. He appeared in a number of movie shorts, getting his movie breakthrough in MGM's "The Hollywood Revue" in 1929, and got the lead role in "The Medicine Man" in 1930. Both of these movies failed at the box office, and although he continued to appear in a number of movies throughout the 1930s and 40s, he became a huge star on radio, where he established himself as a comedian, portraying himself as a wisecracking, penny-pinching, tightwad. His self-depreciating humor style quickly found a wide audience.
This report prepared by Nathaniel Ford