Picks and Pans Review: Talking With...
Cutup When L.A.'s Museum of Television and Radio asked Harry Shearer to laud Dan Rather at a May fete, the comedian was flabbergasted. "I almost never get invited to dinners honoring people I make fun of," says Shearer, known for his impersonations of media heavyweights on his weekly syndicated radio show. He was even more shocked when Rather thanked him.
That was before Shearer, 54, played smarmy newsmen in Godzilla and The Truman Show—a lot of screen time for a guy known mostly for providing the voice of The Simpsons' Mr. Burns. Next up for Shearer, who played bassist Derek Smalls in 1984's This Is Spinal Tap, is the July 10 animated film Small Soldiers.
Shearer, who debuted at 7 on Jack Benny's radio show, is unimpressed with his latest fame. At 13, he played an Eddie Haskell-type character in the pilot for Leave It to Beaver but then quit showbiz for "a serious life" that included graduating from UCLA. Married to Welsh singer-songwriter Judith Owen, Shearer loves his radio gig: "It's just between me and the audience. It's sort of ideal."