Just days after Jerry Lewis shot down rumors he was done hosting the Muscular Dystrophy Association annual telethon, the organization has announced the legendary funnyman won’t be back as master of ceremonies at the annual event. He also is no longer the national MDA chairman.
“Jerry Lewis is a world-class humanitarian and we’re forever grateful to him for his more than half century of generous service to MDA,” MDA Chairman of the Board of Directors, R. Rodney Howell, M.D., said in a statement on Wednesday. “We will not be replacing him as MDA national chairman, and he will not be appearing on the Telethon.”
Just last week Lewis told reporters as he promoted “Method to the Madness of Jerry Lewis,” an Encore documentary about the legendary star, not to believe everything that had been reported, when asked if he was definitely out of hosting the MDA Telethon. He added at the time that he was planning to make an announcement in September.
But it appears as of Wednesday’s MDA announcement, he is definitely out of hosting the telethon.
Lewis made headlines last week when, while promoting his Encore special, he slammed reality TV, in particular, “American Idol” contestants.
“The kids they get on ‘American Idol,’ they’re all McDonalds’ wipeouts… They all worked there and now they’re doing that,” he said of the people who try out for the show.
“We don’t have the soul in our industry that we had when I was working in it,” he continued. “The soul has been desperately deteriorating [in] it, only because you’ve got a guy running a network whose aunt died and left him some stock.”