The Associated Press has just reported that one of ‘The Original Kings of Comedy,’ Bernie Mac has died as a result of serious complications from pneumonia. Bernie Mac was 50.
An inspiring and multi-talented African American man, Bernie Mac was able to parlay a past-time into a fortune. Growing up poor and living on a diet of “bologna for dinner,” Mac once said, “it was through a little luck and perseverance” that he was able to transcend a poverty-stricken existence to star in some of Hollywood’s notoriously financial blockbusters such as, “Bad Santa,” the “Ocean’s Eleven” franchise, “Transformers,” “Friday,” “Get On The Bus,” and the stellar “Original Kings of Comedy” tour and documentary by Spike Lee. Currently Mac has two films in post production.
“The Bernie Mac Show,” a magnificent sitcom about raising his drug-addicted sister’s children in California, earned Mac the prestigious Peabody Award in 2002. When the “Bernie Mac Show” premiered, it took America back to the “Cosby Show” with excellent values, realistic situations, a loving married African American couple that formed a stable nucleus to sustain a family. The major problems came with FOX constantly changing the date and time slot of the show due to so-called ‘low’ ratings. Despite the ratings and movement of “The Bernie Mac Show,” it continued to win numerous NAACP awards and was beloved by the African American community.
Bernard Jeffrey McCullough, born October 5, 1957, also known as Bernie Mac, “was a good father, raised his kids. My heart goes out to his family. This is a heartbreak,” lamented fellow “Original Kings of Comedy” stand-up comic, morning show host and friend Steve Harvey. “My heart goes out to his family,” Harvey said this morning.
Bernie Mac…Dead at 50.