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James Burrows to Receive Banff Fest Tribute

Legendary TV director to receive the Sir Peter Ustinov Comedy Award in the Canadian Rockies.

TORONTO -- U.S. network sitcom king James Burrows is to receive the Sir Peter Ustinov Comedy Award at the upcoming Banff World Media Festival, organizers said Wednesday.

Burrows, who co-created Cheers and lent weight to CBS pilots for Better With You, Mike and Molly, $#*! My Dad Says and Big Bang Theory by directing them, will also present a master class in Banff.

"For decades, Mr. Burrows has quite literally shaped popular culture on television, and has been an inspiration and role model for countless emerging and established talents in the business,” Ferne Cohen, executive director of the Banff TV festival said when explaining her choice for this year’s comedy tribute award.

The veteran TV director will be joined in Banff by other comedy giants as Howie Mandel, Eugene Levy and Ed Asner, whom Burrows directed on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Lou Grant, also receive special achievement awards this year.