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Martin Short praised by Hollywood peers after ‘nasty’ hit piece

Martin Short is receiving an outpouring of love following a controversial hit piece about the actor.

On Friday (8 September), Slate published an article titled “Why We Keep Putting Up With Martin Short”, which described him as “devastatingly unfunny”.

Writer Dan Kois stated in the piece: “Throughout his evolution from sketch-comedy standout to uneasy movie star to twice-failed talk-show host to enthusiastic song-and-dance man, I’ve wrinkled my nose.

“Every time he dresses up in a silly outfit or says something outrageous or mugs for the audience, I want to shout at the screen: Why are you being like this?”

Kois’s claims have struck a nerve, with social media now filled with posts explaining why the article was “nasty” and “misguided”. At the time of writing on Saturday (9 September), Short was the number one trending topic on X/Twitter.

Clips of Short from SNL, his cameo roles in sitcoms such as Curb Your Enthusiasm, Arrested Development and Modern Family, as well as his interviews are being widely shared alongside messages of support for the actor.

Ben Stiller wrote: “Martin Short is a comedic genius. End of story,” with Succession actor J Smith Cameron adding: “The infamous Martin Short article is filled with clips or references to characters that the writer finds annoying somehow, but are so entertaining that the article is a valentine in spite of itself.

John Cusack waded in: “I don’t know what people are on about re Martin Short – but his Mister Rogers boxing match is my fav.”

Shortly after the article went live, This is Spinal Tap and Better Call Saul actor Michael McKean wrote: “Guy really blew the lid off of the whole Martin Short story, didn’t he?”

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Short, who currently stars alongside Steve Martin and Selena Gomez in Only Murders in the Building, shot to fame as a sketch comedian in the late 1970s.

(Craig Blankenhorn / Hulu)

In 1984, he joined the cast of Saturday Night Live, where he created the character Jiminy Glick.

That same decade, the Canadian star, 73, made his Broadway debut and starred in films including Three Amigos and Innerspace. His other credits include the 1991 remake of Father of the Bride, and Tim Burton’s Mars Attacks! (1996).

From 2015, he has performed a stand-up tour with his regular collaborator Martin, and in 2017, a special that was filmed for Netflix received four Emmy nominations.

His role in Only Murders in the Building, in which he plays Broadway director and part-time sleuth Oliver Putnam, saw him receive an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series. In total, he was won two Emmys and a Tony award.

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