Over the weekend, the phrase “Dying is easy; comedy is hard (or difficult).” came to mind. There are a number of amusing variations on this quotation.
The quote has been attributed to a number of actors, including Edmund Kean (died 1833); Edmund Gwenn, who played Santa Claus in the 1947 film Miracle on 34th Street (died 1959); George Bernard Shaw, Irish playwright (died 1950); Donald Wolfit, English actor (died 1968); Edwin Booth, brother of John Wilkes Booth who eclipsed his sibling’s fame by shooting President Abraham Lincoln; and Donald Crisp (died 1975).
“Dying is easy; comedy is hard” was also a line spoken by Peter O’Toole playing Alan Swann (a character based on Errol Flynn) in the 1982 film “My Favorite Year.”
Other quotes in a similar vein:
“Dying is easy. Parking is hard.” and “Dying isn’t hard. Getting paid by Medicare is.” – Humorist Art Buchwald, who died in 2007 after a wonderful experience with hospice care.
“Dying is easy; it’s living that’s hard.” – Credited to the character Luke Spencer on the TV show “General Hospital” in 1963.
“Dying is easy. It’s living that scares me to death.” – Singer Annie Lennox.
“Dying is easy. Playing a lesbian is hard.” – Mary Pat Hooligan, a character in the 2006 film “For Your Consideration.”
Anyone have other variations to add?
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