Sandler will receive the Mark Twain Award for his career in comedy


Mark Twain recipients are honored with an evening of testimonials and video tributes, often featuring previous recipients.

Adam Sandler accepts the Best Male Lead award for ‘Uncut Gems’ at the 35th Film Independent Spirit Awards on February 8, 2020 in Santa Monica, California. Sandler will be honored by a host of comedians and entertainment royalty on Sunday, March 19, 2023, as he receives the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor from the Kennedy Center. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello, File) PA

WASHINGTON (AP) — Actor-comedian Adam Sandler will be honored by comedy and entertainment royalty when he receives the Kennedy Center’s Mark Twain Prize for American Humor on Sunday night.

Sandler, 56, first came to national attention as a cast member of “Saturday Night Live.” After being fired from the cast after five years, the New Hampshire native launched a wildly successful film career that spanned over 30 movies, grossing over $3 billion worldwide.

“Adam Sandler has entertained audiences for more than three decades with his movies, his music, and his tenure as a fan-favorite cast member on ‘SNL,'” Kennedy Center President Deborah Rutter said in a statement. communicated when Sandler’s price was announced in December. “Adam created characters that made us laugh, cry and cry with laughter.”

Sandler’s top hits include “Happy Gilmore”, “The Wedding Singer”, and “You Don’t Mess with the Zohan”. Although primarily known for his slapstick comedies and pushy man-child characters, Sandler also excelled in several dramatic roles such as the films “Punch Drunk Love” and “Uncut Gems.”

Mark Twain recipients are honored with an evening of testimonials and video tributes, often featuring previous recipients. Other comedians receiving the lifetime achievement award include Richard Pryor (the first recipient in 1998), Whoopi Goldberg, Bob Newhart, Carol Burnett and Dave Chapelle. Bill Cosby, the 2009 recipient, had his Mark Twain Award rescinded in 2019 amid multiple sexual assault allegations.

Longtime comedy institution “SNL” provided more than its share of 24 Mark Twain recipients; Sandler is the seventh actor to receive the award, joining Bill Murray, Tina Fey, Will Farrell, Billy Crystal, Eddie Murphy, Julia Louise-Dreyfus. Show creator and producer Lorne Michaels won in 2004.

Among those scheduled to honor Sandler on Sunday night, according to the Kennedy Center, are Jennifer Aniston, Judd Apatow, Drew Barrymore, Steve Buscemi, Dana Carvey, Luis Guzmán, Tim Herlihy, Tim Meadows, Idina Menzel, Conan O’Brien, Chris Rock, Rob Schneider, David Spade and Ben Stiller.

The ceremony will air nationally on CNN on March 26.

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