Let's face it! Everything below the waist... is kaput!
Madeline Kahn (September 29, 1942 — December 3, 1999) was an actress and comedienne who is best known for being a proud member of Mel Brooks
's Production Posse
. She was nominated for several Oscar and Tony awards, but only won one (for The Sisters Rosensweig
). She also did voice work and collaborated repeatedly with Gene Wilder
, Cloris Leachman, and The Muppets
, among others.
She stated that her favorite actors to work with were Wilder and Steve Martin
Has Appeared In:
Tropes associated with her, or that have been seen in her work:
- Ascended Fanboy: She got to work with her own idol, Lucille Ball, when she was originally cast as Agnes Gooch in the film version of Mame. But something got her fired, or else she quit (no one seems to agree why she left production), which basically subverts this.
- Butt Monkey / The Chew Toy: When she's not playing a Femme Fatale, she's more than likely playing one of these.
- The Cast Showoff: Find a movie she's been in after Young Frankenstein that people actually know about, where she doesn't find an excuse to sing.
- Determinator: She worked on Cosby, the spinoff of The Cosby Show, while undergoing treatment for ovarian cancer.
- Elmuh Fudd Syndwome: Her characters in Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein and An American Tail.
- Femme Fatale: HELL yeah.
- Hey, It's That Voice!: Her voice is hard to mistake.
- The Ingenue: She once played Cunegonde. Listen for yourself.
- The Immodest Orgasm: Two famous ones: one in Young Frankenstein (where she breaks into song) and one in Blazing Saddles ("It's twue, it's twue!")
- Large Ham: She very rarely plays a straight female lead.
- Not What It Looks Like: Mel Brooks made her uncomfortable at her audition for Blazing Saddles when he asked her to lift up her skirt. He actually just wanted to make sure she had the right legs for the part.
- Older Than They Look: She didn't age much considering the thirty or so years she was in the business.
- One-Scene Wonder: In a sense. Her most famous work ironically didn't give her much screen time (in Young Frankenstein, for instance, she only had about fifteen minutes onscreen).
- Playing Against Type: She's partially famous for playing loud and confident characters, but Mel Brooks has stated that she was actually pretty shy in real life.
- Pretty in Mink: When playing a Socialite, she more often than not wore a fur.
- Production Posse: She was part of Mel Brooks's posse.
- Sanity Slippage Song: She's covered Getting Married Today.
- Love It or Hate It: Some of her films are definitely an acquired taste.
- Throw It In: As well as her "Flames on the side of my face" monologue, "Ah, Sweet Mystery Of Life" was her choice of song when her character in Young Frankenstein is raped. (Mel Brooks originally wanted her to sing something different, and she didn't warn him about the aforementioned song.)