[[quoteright:350:[[Film/{{Airplane}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/img-101128-leslie-nielson_225656528596_1019.png]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:"He ''is'' serious. And don't call him Shirley."]]

->''"I'm afraid if I don't keep moving, they're going to catch me ... I am 81 years old and I want to see what's around the corner, and I don't see any reason in the world not to keep working. But I am starting to value my down time a great deal because I am realizing there might be other things to do that I am overlooking."''
-->-- '''Leslie Nielsen''' (reflecting on his career)

'''Leslie Nielsen''' (February 11, 1926 -- November 28, 2010) was a Canadian-born actor and comedian. Originally trained at Toronto's Neighborhood Playhouse, he first became known as a dramatic lead debuting in ''The Vagabond King''. Though the movie wasn't a success, Nielsen soon achieved fame as Commander John J. Adams in ''Film/ForbiddenPlanet'', and subsequently starred in many films and television shows as a romantic or dramatic leading man.

He is, however, best known for [[LeslieNielsenSyndrome his comedic career]], starting with a CastingGag role in ''Film/{{Airplane}}'', where his deadpan delivery in the face of nonstop absurdity stole the film. The film's success rejuvenated his career, and Nielsen soon found himself starring in other comic works, most notably ''Series/PoliceSquad'' and ''Film/TheNakedGun''. All together, he has appeared in over a hundred films and 1,500 television programs.

In many of his comedic roles, he grew somewhat notorious for keeping his fellow actors (and even the directors) on their toes by concealing and manipulating a whoopee cushion, making farting noises with it at unexpected times, often cracking the whole cast and crew up.

He died of complications from pneumonia in November 2010, at the age of 84.

[[GraveHumor His epitaph reads:]] ''[[ToiletHumor "Let 'er Rip."]]'' Because that's how he rolls. When interviewed, he asked what he would want inscribed on his gravestone, and he answered with this. And yes, he added in a perfectly timed squeeze of the whoopee cushion to punctuate the answer. ([[http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=62278982 You can virtually visit his grave on Find a Grave.com, here]].)

His start as a dramatic actor, which eventually transitioned into doing comedies instead inspired the name of the trivia item LeslieNielsenSyndrome (the inversion of TomHanksSyndrome).

----
!! Leslie Nielsen appears in the following works detailed on TV Tropes:

* ''[[Film/TwoThousandAndOneASpaceTravesty 2001: A Space Travesty]]''
* ''Film/ForbiddenPlanet''
* ''Film/ThePoseidonAdventure''
* ''Film/{{Airplane}}''
* ''Film/TheCanadianConspiracy'', a 1985 HBO {{Mockumentary}} which riffs on the fact that his older brother Erik was Deputy Prime Minister to [[CanadianPolitics Brian Mulroney]], and included a whole bunch of Canadians in Hollywood (including both LorneGreene and LorneMichaels, to say nothing of Creator/WilliamShatner and MichaelJFox) trying to subvert the US government. Yes.
* ''Series/{{Columbo}}'', having played in two films- in the first season as the fiancee of the murderer, and again in the fifth season as a corrupt CIA agent murdered by his own partner.
* ''Film/{{Creepshow}}''
* ''Series/DueSouth'': Where his character is eventually described as having "an extraordinary resemblance to the Canadian actor and comedian Leslie Nielson."
* ''Film/DraculaDeadAndLovingIt''
* ''TheGoldenGirls'': Plays Lucas Williamson, marrying Dorothy in the series finale.
* ''Series/{{Mash}}'': He plays a colonel in one episode gaslit into thinking he has battle fatigue and going stateside to cool off.
* ''Film/MenWithBrooms''
* ''Film/MrMagoo'' (live-action movie)
* ''Series/PoliceSquad''
** ''Film/TheNakedGun'' series, a sequel to ''Police Squad!''
* ''Film/{{Repossessed}}''
* ''Film/ScaryMovie 3'' and ''4''
* ''[[http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0111049/ S.P.Q.R.: 2000 and a half years ago]]'', an Italian comedy movie among many starring veteran actors Massimo Boldi and Christian De Sica; this movie -- otherwise rather forgettable -- is known for having been graced by Leslie Nielsen himself.
* ''Film/StanHelsing''
* ''Film/SuperheroMovie''
* ''Film/SpyHard''
* ''Film/WrongfullyAccused''
* ''Film/PromNight1980''
* ''Film/DayOfTheAnimals''

----
!!'''Leslie Nielsen's career and works demonstrate the following tropes:'''

* CareerResurrection
* TheComicallySerious
* DontExplainTheJoke
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: Sometimes unconnected with what Nielsen's character is doing, more often something he inadvertently sets off and then carries on in the background of his main scene.
* IWasQuiteALooker: In TheFifties, such as in ''[[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/16/ForbiddenPlanet1.jpg Forbidden Planet]]''. He later turned into a SilverFox of sorts.
* LiteralMinded
* LeslieNielsenSyndrome: TropeNamer, of course, surely the change starting with ''Film/{{Airplane}}''. (And don't call him Shirley!)
* MarketBasedTitle: In Spain, some of his comedic movies are renamed to "verb related to the movie" + ''como puedas'' (as you can):
** ''Aterriza como puedas'' (''Film/{{Airplane}}'')
** ''Agárralo como puedas'' (''Film/TheNakedGun'')
** ''Espía como puedas'' (''Film/SpyHard'')
** ''Acampa como puedas'' (''Family Plan'')
** ''2001: Despega como puedas'' (''[[Film/TwoThousandAndOneASpaceTravesty 2001: A Space Travesty]]'')
** ''Esquía como puedas'' (''Kevin of the North'')
* MilkingTheGiantCow
* ShaggyFrogStory
* StraightMan
* VisualPun
* WalkingDisasterArea

----