Comedian Charlie Callas dead in Las Vegas at 83
LAS VEGAS – Charlie Callas, a versatile comedian whose zany faces and antics made him a regular for more than four decades on television, in films and on casino stages, has died in Las Vegas. He was 83.
Callas died Thursday at a hospice, according to his sons Mark Callas and Larry Callas.
Callas was a rubber-faced, wiry framed comic whose rapid-fire delivery drew laughs and made him a frequent guest on variety and comedy shows.
"Everybody that met him, he left them with a smile," Mark Callas said.
For years, Charlie Callas made Johnny Carson laugh on the "Tonight Show." But Carson banned him from returning after Callas shoved Carson off his chair in a bid for laughs in 1982.
Mark Callas said his father knew every member of the Rat Pack, a group of actors that included Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Joey Bishop and Peter Lawford.
Callas toured with Sinatra and Tom Jones, had a role with Jerry Lewis in the movie "The Big Mouth" in 1967, and was a guest on TV variety shows hosted by Jackie Gleason, Ed Sullivan, Merv Griffin, Andy Williams and Flip Wilson. Callas guest-hosted on the "Joey Bishop Show."