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Cary Grant. Frank Sinatra. Tracy Morgan. Three very different men, each among the very few recipients of the Friars Club’s top honor.
On May 26, Morgan is set to become only the ninth winner of the Entertainment Icon Award by the private New York roast-house. Other past recipients are Douglas Fairbanks, Tony Bennett, Martin Scorsese, Tom Cruise, Robert De Niro and, most recently, Billy Crystal.
“The Friars is a legendary part of New York City and Comedy, two of my favorite things,” said Morgan. “Some of my biggest influences were in and out of there…I’m following in the footsteps of greatness…I’m humbled and looking forward to a crazy night.”
The event is set for an in-person gala at Manhattan’s Ziegfeld Ballroom, with Al Roker and George Lopez among early attendees announced to honor the comic.
“Tracy Morgan is indestructible…he truly is one of the last OGs…We OGs can survive anything, from new kidneys to new shows,” said Lopez in a statement, invoking both the title of Morgan’s TBS sitcom and their shared status as organ transplant recipients. “Everything Tracy gets, he gives it life!”
Currently starring in The Last O.G., Morgan is of course best known for his prolific stand-up career, his eight seasons on Saturday Night Live and his self-parodying portrayal of Tracy Jordan in Tina Fey’s 30 Rock. He’s twice been nominated for a Primetime Emmy and the NAACP Image Award.
The event is also set to pay tribute to late Friars Club members Betty White and Bob Saget, and a portion of the night’s proceeds will benefit Stand Up to Cancer.
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