James Lipton of “Inside the Actors Studio” Dead at 93
The interviewer hosted the show for 23 years
James Lipton, the host of Bravo’s Inside the Actors Studio known for his effusive interviewing style, has reportedly passed away in his Manhattan home at the age of 93 after a battle with bladder cancer.
Lipton hosted Inside the Actors Studio for 23 years, stepping down in 2018 when it moved from Bravo to Ovation TV. The show was nominated for 21 Primetime Emmys, winning in 2013 for Outstanding Informational Series or Special. Lipton also received the Critics’ Choice Television Award for best reality show host in 2016.
Lipton was also a good sport about being lampooned by Will Ferrell in a series of recurring sketches on Saturday Night Live, telling CNN in 2012 that “I love it. It’s very flattering. I think he’s got me cold.”
“I made a vow early on that we would not deal in gossip — only in craft, and Ovation, as a network dedicated to the arts, will continue that tradition with the next seasons of the series,” Lipton told the Hollywood Reporter after stepping down as host in 2018. “I’m excited to see the new hosts engage with the guests and students and continue to entertain viewers in the U.S. and around the world.”
Lipton famously closed his interviews with a series of questions employed by French TV host Bernard Pivot — including “What’s your favorite curse word?” and “What profession would you not want to practice?” — and as the New York Times points out, Lipton answered them himself only once, when he appeared on Pivot’s show. He answered “If God exists, what would you like to hear him say after your death?” by responding, “You see, Jim, you were wrong. I exist. But you may come in anyway.”
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