Massapequa-raised comedy icon Jerry Seinfeld is assuring people that a newly viral exchange between himself and recently deceased broadcasting legend Larry King was good-natured, despite suspicions to the contrary.
“Always loved Larry King and will miss him,” Seinfeld, 66, tweeted Saturday. “The ‘canceled’ bit was just me having fun with his little mistake. Nothing more. Or less.”
In an excerpt from the Nov. 1, 2007, edition of CNN’s “Larry King Live,” the host, who died Saturday at age 87, asks Seinfeld whether the comedian had voluntarily ended the Emmy Award-winning comedy hit “Seinfeld” after nine seasons in 1998.
“You gave it up, right?” asks King.
“I did,” Seinfeld replies. King then asks the question another way: “They didn’t cancel you, you canceled them?” Seinfeld, pausing to take that in, answers, “You’re not aware of this?”
“No, I’m asking you,” King says.
“You think I got canceled? Are you under the impression that I got canceled?” a surprised Seinfeld tells him. “I thought that was pretty well documented. … Is this still CNN?”Sign up for Newsday’s Entertainment newsletter
Get the latest on celebs, TV and more.
“Don’t most shows go down a little?” King asks. “Most people do also,” Seinfeld riffs, then adds, laughing, “Yeah, no, [when] I went off the air, I was the no. 1 show on television, Larry. … Do you know who I am?”
“Jewish guy. Brooklyn,” King ripostes.
The banter continues, with King telling Seinfeld, “Don’t take it so bad.” “Well,” Seinfeld says with a laugh, “it’s a big difference between being canceled and being no. 1! … Can we get a resume in here for me that Larry could go over?” “Hey,” King replies, playfully pointing at the comic, then cuts to commercial break. At no point does the veteran broadcaster appear upset.
Seinfeld was on the show to promote his animated feature “Bee Movie,” in which he voiced the anthropomorphic bee Barry B. Benson. King in that movie voiced the anthropomorphic Bee Larry King, who interviews Barry on TV. “Y’know, they have a Larry King in the human world, too,” Barry notes. “It’s a common name,” the bee host says dismissively.
By Frank Lovece
Special to Newsday