Richard Pryor: Omit the Logic

Synopsis: The life and times of Richard Pryor.
Director(s): Marina Zenovich
Production: Fresh One Productions
  Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 win & 1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
83 min

This programme contains adult humour

and very strong language.

The two most beautiful words

in the world of comedy -

Richard Pryor.


Good evening. Wait for the people

to get from the bathroom.

They're in there pissing.

Wait, the sh*t's started.

Richard Pryor, undisputed champion

of the world.

The greatest of all times. Case

closed. Period. Exclamation point.

This is the fun part for me

when the white people come back

after intermission and find out

N*ggers have stole their seats.

"We were sitting here, weren't we?"

"Yes, we were sitting right there."

"Well, you ain't sitting there now,


It's amazing to see him live. It's

like saying you saw Coltrane play.

What you taking my picture for?

You know you ain't got no film

in the camera.

Just flash and ain't nothing

flash. Sit your ugly ass down.

Most of us saw Richard

and thought, he's free flying.

I want to free fly. I love

when white dudes get mad and cuss.

Cos you're all some funny

motherfuckers when you cuss.

Says, "Like, come on, pecker head!"

"Come on, you f***ing jerk-off.

Come on!"

Yeah. You f***ing

ain't right, buddy.

N*ggers speak like, "Buddy this."

Always talked about making them

brave enough to see themselves.

And the demons he wanted

to exorcise in the audience

became demons that he found hard

to exorcise in himself.

Richard Pryor,

the comedian and writer,

was badly burned in an accident at

his home in California last night.

Authorities say Richard Pryor

either walked or ran

nearly a mile and a half

from his house to this location,

where an ambulance rescued him.

There was an indication that a butane lighter

exploded on Mr Pryor. What can you tell us about that?

Right now, I'm not going to say

anything about cause or determination

until we know anything for sure.

Is there any indication there might have been

some manufacturing of drugs on the premises?

I can't say that either at this time.

Pryor's attorney talked

with reporters

and disputed the LAPD theory that

Pryor was using freebase cocaine.

He had a glass of rum in his hand.

He was lighting a cigarette

when boom.

No cocaine. No cocaine.

If anyone is monitoring

the intercom, let me inform you

that we have the right to check

the premises for flammables.

We intend to make entry by force

if necessary.

We have a verbal search warrant.

Fire and police investigators

obtained a search warrant

and forcibly entered Pryor's home

to look for clues this morning.

But police said someone had already

cleaned up the scene of the fire

and they could find no evidence.

Everybody had this sense that

something was ultimately going

to happen and it finally did.

This is it.

He's finally killed himself.

For the first time on television,

Richard Pryor.

Er, I'm going to tell you

a few things about myself,

because a lot of you probably

don't know me. I'm not a New Yorker.

My home's in Peoria, Illinois.

And, er...

Thank you.

I'm from an average type family -

11 kids.

No mother and father, just kids.

I was roaming

around Greenwich Village

and I wandered

into the Cafe au Go Go.

And I saw this guy

do a set

and I was completely mesmerised.

I thought this guy is going to be

a major star,

if I can get him to be able to put

two sentences together

without "f***, motherf***er, c*nt".

The next party you go to, everybody'll be

dancing away, having a heck of a time.

There will be one guy in the corner

by himself, checking himself out.

Everybody else will be dancing.

One guy in the corner... Hm. Doo.

Richard and I would have

to goes through the material,

rehearsing and preparing.

And it was never to make it funny.

It was to make cleaner.

I went to the opening night

at his first legitimate gig

at The Living Room,

which was a chic East Side boite.

And it was very crowded.

The maitre d' said,

could Nipsey Russell join you?

Sure. Nipsey sat down.

All during the show, Nipsey's

going... Hm. Tsk.

I said, what's wrong? At the end

of the show. What was wrong?

He said, "He's doing Bill Cosby."

Bill Cosby did what

they called the crossover.

He'd gotten white people to like him.

I think Richard thought

he had to imitate Bill to get

over to become part of the circus

or whatever it was.

Success came within a year. Yes.

How is it up here? Oh, wow!

How does it come out?

Oh, hostile. Really? Oh, yes. I go

out. I don't know. I go crazy.

Tell us the big things

that are going to happen to you.

A big thing that's going to happen

is, I'm going to Las Vegas.

He plays Vegas in 1966.

He's a huge success.

That world that he so aspired

to join, wanted to impress

everybody, wanted to be a big star

with his name in lights.

Suddenly, there's a hollowness

to that price.

Richard Pryor.


I want to really tell you,

it's really wow being here.

My home's in Midwest, Illinois.


Peoria where? Yeah. Peoria where?

Peoria, Illinois.

When he was in Las Vegas performing,

he looked out in the audience

and saw some white people.

Dean Martin was in the audience

and he was looking at him.

And Richard said, "I looked

at Dean Martin through his own eyes

"and saw me looking

like a damn fool."

It was like an epiphany. I don't

want to do it that way any more.

I want to do it the way I hear it.

That was probably when Richard Pryor

decided to become Richard Pryor.

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P.G. Morgan

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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