Comedian, actress, and author Carol Burnett will be the recipient of this year’s Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award, a title that’s reserved for individuals who possess the “finest ideals of the acting profession.”

Ken Howard, president of SAG-AFTRA (union of the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) released a statement on behalf of SAG, calling Burnett a “creative dynamo and a comedic genius,” and praising her for embodying “the generosity and courage that the greatest actors use in creating enduring and memorable characters.”

At 82, Carol Burnett is regarded as one of the pioneers of sketch comedy, mostly due to her self-titled variety sketch series, The Carol Burnett Show, which premiered in 1967 and ran for 11 years. The show had an average of 30 million viewers a week and racked up 25 Emmys. It was also included in Variety magazine’s list of the 25 shows that changed TV. The Carol Burnett Show was only one of the actress’ achievements; she’s also starred in a long list of movies and stage productions, as well as appearances in several award-winning television programs, including Mama’s Family, Mad About You, and All My Children.


Burnett’s new SAG Lifetime Achievement Award will be added to her growing collection of accolades—in addition to her stash of Emmy Awards, Burnett also has five Golden Globe Awards, five American Comedy Awards, eight People’s Choice Awards, the Mark Twain Prize for Humor, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, to name just a few.

“She took risks as a performer and through her courage, encouraged fellow actors to try new things and always, always reach for the sky,” said Howard. Carol Burnett will join other A-list names at the Screen Actors Guild Awards ceremony, to be held on January 30, 2016.

Friedlander, W., “Carol Burnett to Receive SAG Life Achievement Award,” Variety web site, July 21, 2015;
“Carol Burnett Awards,” IMDB web site;, last accessed July 21, 2015.

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