[[caption-width-right:300:[[Film/HistoryOfTheWorldPartI It's good to be the king!]]]]

->''"Tragedy is when '''I''' cut my finger. {{Comedy}} is when '''you''' fall into an open sewer and die."''

Mel Brooks (born Melvin James Kaminsky June 28, 1926) is probably one of the funniest men in Hollywood, and Broadway, and life in general.

Co-creator of the ''Film/JamesBond'' parody series ''Series/GetSmart'' (with Buck Henry), and producer and director of many fine films -- most of them [[AffectionateParody affectionate parodies]] -- such as ''Film/BlazingSaddles'', ''Film/YoungFrankenstein'', ''Film/TheProducers'', ''Literature/TheTwelveChairs'', ''Film/SilentMovie'', ''Film/HighAnxiety'', ''Film/HistoryOfTheWorldPartI'', ''Film/ToBeOrNotToBe'', ''{{Film/Spaceballs}}'', ''Film/DraculaDeadAndLovingIt'', and ''Film/RobinHoodMenInTights''.

Notably, ''Film/BlazingSaddles'', ''Film/TheProducers'' and ''Film/YoungFrankenstein'' occupy spots 6, 11 and 13 on the AFI's list of the 100 best comedies of the last 100 years. [[SoGoodWeMentionedItTwice Did we mention]] that he's ''really'' funny?

[[HeAlsoDid He also produced]] Creator/DavidLynch's drama ''Film/TheElephantMan'' and Creator/DavidCronenberg's ''Film/{{The Fly|1986}}'' but [[UncreditedRole removed his name]] because he didn't want people to think they were comedies.

His record as writer, producer and comedian has resulted in him being one of the fourteen people to be an [[TheEGOTs EGOT (An Emmy (4 of them), a Grammy (3 of them), an Oscar, and a Tony (3 of them)), the top awards of television, music, film, and theater, respectively)]], a lifetime achievement award from the AFI, as well as a fellowship from the BAFTA. Brooks himself jokes that the only award he ''hasn't'' won is "Woman Of The Year."

In the new millennium, he co-wrote and produced successful musical versions of ''The Producers'' and ''Young Frankenstein'' for Broadway. Following the success of ''The Producers'', he and Creator/AnneBancroft appeared as themselves on ''Series/CurbYourEnthusiasm'', intent on casting Creator/LarryDavid and Creator/DavidSchwimmer in the show in the hope that they'll kill the show and they won't have to bother with it. In other words, it's a SpringtimeForHitler. Of course, like all SpringtimeForHitler schemes, it fails.

Brooks is responsible for launching and boosting the careers of many comedians. It was he who gave Creator/DaveChappelle his first credited role.

He also [[PissTakeRap rapped]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zpYQJkBQp0 as Hitler once]]. In an interview for ''Series/SixtyMinutes'', he stated that his life's goal was to [[AdolfHitlarious reduce Hitler to a figure of such ridiculousness]] that no-one would ever take his ideas seriously again. (If the numerous Tonys that ''Film/TheProducers'' won are any indication, it's working.) Being both Jewish and a UsefulNotes/WorldWarII veteran, if anyone has NWordPrivileges to joke about UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler it's him.

He met Anne Bancroft on a talk show and then bribed a woman in order to create a MeetCute with her. Proving that being GenreSavvy has its perks, he was somehow able to convince MrsRobinson to become [[UglyGuyHotWife Mrs.]] [[HappilyMarried Brooks]]. Their union resulted in [[Literature/WorldWarZ Max Brooks]], probably one of the foremost experts on how to repel and survive the oncoming ZombieApocalypse. He has three other children from his first marriage to Florence Baum, which only lasted a few years. He attributes this to both of them being too young to know what they were getting into, and they've remained on good terms in all the decades since.

If you were a kid at The TurnOfTheMillennium, you probably know him best as the voice of Wiley the Sheep on ''WesternAnimation/JakersTheAdventuresOfPiggleyWinks''.

And lastly, he is a RetiredBadass World War II vet who used to defuse Nazi landmines for the Allied Forces. Then at the Battle of the Bulge, when the Nazis set up loud speakers to play Fascist Propaganda at the Allies, [[EstablishingCharacterMoment Brooks set up his own loud speakers]] [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome and played the works of Jewish musical artist Al Jolson right back at them]]. He was making fun of Nazis back when they were still relevant ...and lived. It's good to be the king, indeed.
!!Films of note:

* ''WesternAnimation/{{The Critic|1963}}'' (1963)
* ''Film/TheProducers'' (1968)
* ''Literature/TheTwelveChairs'' (1970)
* ''Film/BlazingSaddles'' (1974)
* ''Film/YoungFrankenstein'' (1974)
* ''Film/SilentMovie'' (1976)
* ''Film/HighAnxiety'' (1977)
* ''Film/HistoryOfTheWorldPartI'' (1981)
* ''Film/ToBeOrNotToBe'' (1983)
* ''Film/{{Spaceballs}}'' (1987)
* ''Film/LifeStinks'' (1991)
* ''Film/RobinHoodMenInTights'' (1993)
* ''Film/DraculaDeadAndLovingIt'' (1995)
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Robots}}'' (2005)
* ''Film/TheProducers'' (2005)
* ''WesternAnimation/HotelTransylvania2'' (2015)
!! Tropes named by his works:
* AffectionateParody: Arguably the king of this trope. His movies mock what we enjoy, but it all comes from a pure love and understanding of the genre he's satirizing.
* BadNewsInAGoodWay
* GoodIsDumb
* JustAStupidAccent
* JustYouAndMeAndMyGuards
* LudicrousSpeed
* TheMelBrooksNumber
* SpringtimeForHitler
* WhereDaWhiteWomenAt
!! Tropes associated with his works:
* ActorAllusion: [[invoked]]Several of his movies make references to Mel, both as the actor and the director. Most notably, Adolf Hitler in ''To Be Or Not To Be'' is introduced in Bronski's play by saying [[Film/TheProducers "Heil Myself!".]]
** Though that was also a joke in the original film. Its being used again in the Broadway production is a definite allusion, though.
* AdolfHitlarious: A life goal of Mel Brooks is reducing Hitler to a punchline. He's notable for re-[[TropeCodifier Codifying]] this trope in the post-World War II world. While this trope was a stable of Allied anti-Nazi media both before and after the war, it disappeared overnight at the end of the war when the public discovered the full extent of the Nazis' atrocities. It helps that he a) started doing this nearly a quarter century after the war had ended, b) still refuses to cross certain boundaries in lampooning Nazism (see EveryoneHasStandards below), and c) is a Jewish-American World War II veteran and thus has about as many NWordPrivileges as you can get when it comes to deriving humor from the Nazis.
* AffectionateParody: A consummate master of this. He once stated that making fun of a bad movie is easy, but making fun of a ''good'' movie is a challenge.
* AnachronismStew: He had a tendency to blend the time frame of his works. ''Blazing Saddles'' is supposed to be a parody of Westerns, but it ends up with the characters running around a movie studio.
* ArchEnemy: UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler. Brooks' drive in life is to mock Hitler and the Nazis so much that their ideas can't be taken seriously ever again.
* AuthorAppeal: [[AdolfHitlarious The]] [[ThoseWackyNazis Nazis]], who he frequently puts in his movies in [[AnachronismStew defiance of historical logic.]] Brooks once said that he wanted to be the first Jew to make a million dollars off of Hitler.
* AssociatedComposer: John Morris composed and conducted the scores to all of his movies up to ''Life Stinks''.
* BigBad: A supervillain who makes a fool out of himself is usually present.
* BlackComedy: His films have made jokes of things like war, execution, terrible history, and even Hitler.
* BreakingTheFourthWall: Frequently. ''Blazing Saddles'' spends its entire final act with the fourth wall broken, as the characters break out of their own movie to trash a sound stage and movie theater.
* CastingGag: [[invoked]]Famous mime [[EveryoneHatesMimes Marcel Marceau]] in ''Film/SilentMovie'' is ironically the only character to ever speak a word.
* CreatorCameo: Sans ''Film/TheProducers'' and ''Film/YoungFrankenstein'', he acts in all of his films as a secondary character and occasionally as the lead. ''History of the World: Part I'' has him playing no fewer than five characters.
* DoubleEntendre: Whether it's through {{Punny Name}}s or incredibly suggestive dialogue, expect a little raunch thrown in.
* DumbBlonde: Chances are, if there's a love interest for the male lead in his movies, she'll be blonde, and a complete moron.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: His first two films, ''Film/TheProducers'' and ''Literature/TheTwelveChairs'', are much more low-key and are closer to BlackComedy than the parodies he'd later be famous for.
* EveryoneHasStandards
** While widely regarded as a legend in [[CrossesTheLineTwice making comedy about things that people don't normally like to talk about]] (and a frequent example used, unfortunately, by [[MisaimedFandom people trying to pass off racist jokes as satire]]), Brooks has made it clear that there ''are'' lines he is not willing to cross. He'll make fun of Hiter and the absurdity of fascism until the cows come home, but stops short of concentration camps and genocide because [[DudeNotFunny there's nothing funny about them at all]], famously ragging on ''Film/LifeIsBeautiful'' for more or less trying to do just that. In ''Film/BlazingSaddles'', he deliberately put in a scene of Bart escaping the gallows because there was no humor to be derived from a black man being hung, especially not in a movie written by a [[NWordPrivileges white filmmaker]]. Even negating the racial content, there was one gag that he had cut on the grounds that even ''he'' found it tasteless ("I hate to disappoint you ma'am, but you're sucking on my arm"). And this was a movie where he had complete creative control over the final cut!
** As he's recounted several times, he was once a guest on a [[CelebrityEdition celebrity week]] of the game show ''Series/EyeGuess'' in 1966. As the taping was wrapping up, he walked over to host Creator/BillCullen, only to notice that Cullen was walking weirdly. Thinking it was a joke, Mel started imitating how Bill was walking. When they reached each other for a hug, Cullen told him "You know, you're the only comic who's ever had the nerve to make fun of my crippled walk. Everyone's so careful, it makes me feel even worse." Mel hadn't known that thanks to a combo of polio and a motorcycle accident, Bill always walked that way ([[IgnoreTheDisability and the shows he hosted took measures to make sure it wasn't noticeable]]) -- so Mel promptly felt horrible about it. As it turned out, Bill liked it -- up until then, he felt that others were being too pitying of him.
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: Rather common, natch.
* GeniusBonus: He's ''really'' good at these. Everyone gets the jokes about Jews, ''Star Wars'', and Westerns in ''Blazing Saddles'', ''The Producers'', and ''Spaceballs'', probably a lot fewer people get the jokes about Dostoevsky's ''[[Literature/TheIdiot The Idiot]]'', ''[[Series/MurderSheWrote Murder She Wrote]]'' and the works of Creator/FranzKafka.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: Granted, there's quite a bit that's clearly meant for adults, but a lot of the really suggestive stuff still gets left in from time to time if it slips by the censors.
* GratuitousGerman: Usually spoken by large women.
* HappilyMarried: To [[UglyGuyHotWife Anne Bancroft]] for a full [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming 41 years until her death in 2005]].
* HurricaneOfEuphemisms: If Mel Brooks can find a way to make a VisualPun, rest assured, he'll do it. And the characters in his works will most certainly point it out.
* IncrediblyLamePun: Not that the characters in his movies think very much of them, but that's never stopped him.
* LyricalDissonance: Expect a cheery sing-and-dance number to show up in less-than-cheery circumstances.
* NeverLearnedToRead: Despite being an accomplished and prolific songwriter, he is completely musically illiterate and his only experience with musical instruments was as a drummer. He hums all of his music into a tape recorder and then has an arranger transcribe it. Quite impressive, considering he'd later win a "Best Original Score" Tony for ''Theatre/TheProducers''.
* NWordPrivileges: Jokes about Jews and the Nazis that would probably be offensive coming from non-Jews are common in his work, though he absolutely draws the line at actual holocaust jokes. ''Film/BlazingSaddles'', meanwhile, ''deliberately'' overused the N-word and made all of the white characters who say it complete morons in an attempt to make it less offensive. (Note that while a lot of people assume Creator/RichardPryor wrote those parts of the film, Brooks himself claims he wrote most of them. Pryor wrote most of the Mongo scenes.) Note that Brooks definitely has a lot more clout to make fun of the Nazis than most people, given that he actually ''[[RetiredBadass fought]]'' the Nazis back when they were still very much a threat.
* OverusedRunningGag: Very often. The pronunciation of "Hedley Lamarr" from ''Blazing Saddles'' and Frau Blucher's name accompanied by a horse's whinny in ''Young Frankenstein'' come to mind.
* ProductionPosse: [[invoked]]A vast majority of his movies had starred not only Mel himself, but Madeline Khan, Creator/GeneWilder (who came up for the original idea of ''Film/YoungFrankenstein''), Harvey Korman, and Creator/DomDeLuise. Composer John Morris scored all of his movies except his [[Film/RobinHoodMenInTights last]] [[DraculaDeadAndLovingIt two]].
%%* RealPersonCameo
* ReferenceOverdosed: Part of his style in parodying a movie or genre is referencing lots of other works in the same genre. ''Blazing Saddles'' parodied a lot of conventions of the Western genre, while ''Robin Hood: Men in Tights'' references a lot of other Robin Hood movies.
* RefugeInAudacity: A master of [[CrossesTheLineTwice politically incorrect]][[note]]Read: politically incorrect. ''Not'' [[DudeNotFunny offensive.]][[/note]] comedy, his personal philosophy with "bluer" jokes is that they're only funny if you go hard or go home with them. In his words, "If you're going to go up to the bell, ring it!"
%%* RuleOfThree
* RunningGag: All over the place, but a notable one is making some sort of reference to a previous film (such as the Mr. Rental in ''Film/{{Spaceballs}}'' having copies of ''every'' Mel Brooks film released up to that point). Another, particularly in later films, is [[SequelSnark plugging fake sequels to the movie currently being watched.]] "Walk this way" is particularly popular, thanks to the numerous spins that can be put on it.
* SirNotAppearingInThisTrailer: A variation. Mel Brooks was the executive producer of ''Film/TheElephantMan'' and deliberately kept his name off the film, for fear people would expect it to be a comedy. He did the same with ''Film/TheFly1986''. However, in the latter case when it failed, he attended the premiere and handed out toy antennae.
* {{Slapstick}}: Expect the characters in his works to take all kinds of comical physical abuse, all of it played for laughs.
* SoulBrotha: African-American characters tended to have at least a little bit of this in his comedies.
* StageName: Born Melvin Kaminsky, he originally planned to take his mother's maiden name of Brookman when he went into show business. [[ForWantOfANail He ran out of space painting "Brookman" on a bass drum head]], so he went with the truncated "Brooks."
* ThoseWackyNazis: He made it a point to make them as "wacky" as humanly possible. Brooks has stated that it was a lifetime goal to reduce Adolf Hitler, in particular, to nothing but a punchline.
* UncreditedRole: He was an uncredited producer on Creator/DavidLynch's ''Film/TheElephantMan'' and Creator/DavidCronenberg's ''Film/{{The Fly|1986}}''. He feared audiences would assume they were comedies because of his involvement, so he left his own name out of the credits and marketing.
* UnexplainedAccent: Most of the characters in his movies don't even bother with putting on accurate accents. It makes the few characters that do speak that way stand out far more.
* VisualPun: My goodness! A shameless user. [[Film/{{Spaceballs}} Radar]], [[CrowningMomentOfFunny about to be JAMMED]]!
* YiddishAsASecondLanguage: Expect everything he writes to be peppered with Yiddishisms for comedy, especially if the speaker isn't Jewish. The man himself has a monologue of it in ''Film/BlazingSaddles''.
->''[[Film/RobinHoodMenInTights LEAVE US ALONE, MEL BROOKS!]]''