Acad pays tribute to funnyman Brooks

Honoree keeps 'em laughing at L.A. event

You show clips of Mel Brooks’ films, as the Motion Picture Academy did Friday at its tribute, and the inevitable result is laughter.

“It’s really lovely,” said Brooks at the pre-party in the Academy’s lobby, “that there are so many people who have so much bad taste.”

Speakers included Academy prexy Sid Ganis, host Leonard Maltin, Carl Reiner, Richard Benjamin, Teri Garr, Tracey Ullman, Lesley Ann Warren and Cloris Leachman on tape.

When it was Brooks’ turn to speak, he showed an astounding memory for details, down to the jokes he told in the Catskills 60 years ago (“You can’t keep Jews in jail — they eat lox”) and his uncanny ability to replicate a cat screeching.