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Stars who often appear as themselves


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I have a feeling Sammy Davis Jr. holds some sort of record as the star who most often played himself in movies and on television.

And I'm not counting variety show appearances, but comedy and drama series where there would be a fictional plot that involved him as himself.

Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 11.12.16 AM.png

He guest-starred in a 1970 episode of Here's Lucy.

He was in a very memorable episode of All in the Family in 1972.

Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 11.12.46 AM.png

In 1984 he appeared on The Jeffersons though there was no reference made to Louise having already met Sammy at Archie Bunker's home years earlier.

Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 11.11.35 AM.jpg

Oh, and he even turned up in a season 2 episode of Charlie's Angels.

Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 12.52.33 PM.jpeg

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Sammy Davis also played himself in episodes of:

The Danny Thomas Show
The Jack Benny Program
The Patty Duke Show
Batman
I Dream of Jeannie
Chico and the Man
Sanford
(two episodes)
Archie Bunker's Place (another run-in with Archie)
Gimme a Break! (that time he played himself and a lookalike)

And he played himself in the movies PEPE (1960) and MOON OVER PARADOR (1988).
 

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I would bet too that Sammy is hard to beat.  One that came to my mind quickly was not really an actress, but the performer Charo, although she did portray some fictional characters closely built on the Charo characterization. 

Maybe she could be a top female contender.

Roles where she played herself, not variety and talk show appearances:

  • Jane the Virgin
  • Don't Trust the B**** in Apartment 23
  • Las Vegas
  • That '70s Show
  • The Naked Truth
  • The Tortellis
  • The Facts of Life
  • The Jeffersons
  • The Naked Truth
  • TV Movie:  Charo and the Sergeant
  • TV Movie: Charo  (apparently this is a movie structured as a variety show.  I'm not familiar!)

She made appearances as a character obviously based upon her persona:

  • Chico and the Man as Aunt Charo
  • Characters on Fantasy Island Yolanda Morales, Maria Diaz, Dolores DeMercia
  • The Love Boat as April Lopez and Lupe Zapata De Vega Valdez
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Say, what about Jack Benny? While multiple stars got radio and/or TV shows where they would play a character who had the same first name as themselves but a different last name, Jack Benny usually played Jack Benny (same thing with George and Gracie, I think). He probably played himself on a lot more total episodes than Sammy, but it was always his own show, so I don't know if that's quite the same.

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42 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

Zsa Zsa Gabor

At least 9 feature films, and at least 10 TV shows or TV movies.

AND, at a particular Beverly Hills Municipal Court appearance of some note.

Don't forget that one too, Lawrence!

(...I'm sure the BHPD officer involved, hasn't) ;)

LOL

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2 hours ago, TopBilled said:

Sammy Davis also played himself in episodes of:

The Danny Thomas Show
The Jack Benny Program
The Patty Duke Show
Batman
I Dream of Jeannie
Chico and the Man
Sanford
(two episodes)
Archie Bunker's Place (another run-in with Archie)
Gimme a Break! (that time he played himself and a lookalike)

And he played himself in the movies PEPE (1960) and MOON OVER PARADOR (1988).
 

His scene in Diamonds Are Forever (1971) was deleted

 

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One of my favorite Here's Lucy episodes has Lucy sharing a hospital room with Eva, who I think was playing herself. The plot involved jewels....Lucy gets into trouble....hilarity ensues.

At least I think it was Eva, not Zsa Zsa. 

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12 minutes ago, RoyCronin said:

One of my favorite Here's Lucy episodes has Lucy sharing a hospital room with Eva, who I think was playing herself. The plot involved jewels....Lucy gets into trouble....hilarity ensues.

At least I think it was Eva, not Zsa Zsa. 

Yes, it was Eva Gabor and she was playing herself in the Season 5 episode "Lucy and Eva Gabor Are Hospital Roomies" from 1972. After Green Acres had ended.

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0600041/

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15 minutes ago, Dargo said:

So, she was there for her bouts of depression after the cancellation of her sitcom then, right?!

;)

Probably! It's been awhile since I've seen the episode, so I can't remember why Eva Gabor was supposedly in the hospital with Lucy. 

Incidentally, Lucille Ball had broken her leg skiing in Colorado during a short hiatus from the show. So they had to write Lucy's injury into the scripts. And that's why they created this scenario for Lucy to be in the hospital with Eva Gabor. This was supposed to be right after her character (Lucy Carter) had also broken her leg and just got out of surgery.

Ball and her character would remain in a cast for the next half dozen episodes. In this episode, she is mostly in the hospital bed then we start to see her in a wheelchair. She continues to use the wheelchair in the next episodes when she is home from the hospital. Then we see her hobbling around, no longer using the wheelchair.

It was either do this or temporarily suspend production of the series. In a way it was good that they wrote the injury into the show and kept going, because it sort of humanized Lucy more. And they did get some funny episodes from this scenario, including this particular one with Eva Gabor.

Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 4.23.50 PM.jpeg

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Eddie Albert appeared on Here's Lucy in 1973, playing himself. 

This is from the episode called "Lucy Gives Eddie Albert the Old Song and Dance"--

Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 4.31.26 PM.jpeg

Of course Lucy and Eddie had previously costarred in a film together (THE FULLER BRUSH GIRL) in 1950.

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OK.....

So how many stars appeared as themselves in MOVIES?  

Off the top, I can only think of the parade who showed up in THE PLAYER('92)

There were supposedly 65 of 'em, so I ain't gonna TRY to list them.....  ;)

Sepiatone

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40 minutes ago, Sepiatone said:

OK.....

So how many stars appeared as themselves in MOVIES?  

Off the top, I can only think of the parade who showed up in THE PLAYER('92)

There were supposedly 65 of 'em, so I ain't gonna TRY to list them.....  ;)

Sepiatone

Are you talking about recent films, or any film?

The star-studded PARAMOUNT ON PARADE (1930) had a large cast of celebrities appearing as themselves:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paramount_on_Parade

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Okay, I think I've got the ACTUAL winner of this thing here!

Now, how many movies did John Wayne appear in? Well over a HUNDRED of 'em, RIGHT?!

(bet ya know already know where I'm goin' with this, don't ya pilgrim)

AND, it is often said that in almost EVERY movie the big guy ever starred in, "he just appeared to be playing himself", RIGHT?!

Yep, and so THERE'S ya the winner here, folks!!! ;)

(...oh and btw, a little assist with my comin' up with this should be credited to - OR maybe "blamed on" might be more apropos here - Mary up there for bringin' up the name of her favorite old western movie cowboy star)

 

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22 hours ago, TopBilled said:

Are you talking about recent films, or any film?

The star-studded PARAMOUNT ON PARADE (1930) had a large cast of celebrities appearing as themselves:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paramount_on_Parade

Any would do.  And sure, those GOLDIGGERS flicks often had a bevy as themselves, as well as STAGE DOOR CANTEEN('43).  

Sepiatone

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1 hour ago, Sepiatone said:

Any would do.  And sure, those GOLDIGGERS flicks often had a bevy as themselves, as well as STAGE DOOR CANTEEN('43).  

Sepiatone

Yes, STAGE DOOR CANTEEN is a good example. So is HOLLYWOOD CANTEEN.

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On ‎7‎/‎10‎/‎2019 at 3:02 PM, RoyCronin said:

I would bet too that Sammy is hard to beat.  One that came to my mind quickly was not really an actress, but the performer Charo, although she did portray some fictional characters closely built on the Charo characterization. 

Maybe she could be a top female contender.

Roles where she played herself, not variety and talk show appearances:

  • Jane the Virgin
  • Don't Trust the B**** in Apartment 23
  • Las Vegas
  • That '70s Show
  • The Naked Truth
  • The Tortellis
  • The Facts of Life
  • The Jeffersons
  • The Naked Truth
  • TV Movie:  Charo and the Sergeant
  • TV Movie: Charo  (apparently this is a movie structured as a variety show.  I'm not familiar!)

She made appearances as a character obviously based upon her persona:

  • Chico and the Man as Aunt Charo
  • Characters on Fantasy Island Yolanda Morales, Maria Diaz, Dolores DeMercia
  • The Love Boat as April Lopez and Lupe Zapata De Vega Valdez

Charo also appeared as herself on The Pee-Wee's Playhouse Christmas Special along with Zsa Zsa, Frankie and Annette, and Cher.

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