Friday, January 1, 2010

Don Novello

Happy Birthday today to Don Novello, a k a Father Guido Sarducci, who turns 67.

Novello started his career as a copywriter at Leo Burnett, an advertising agency in Chicago. In the early 1970s, Novello began writing letters to famous people under the pen name of Lazlo Toth. His writings were similar to the humorous stylings of the Borat character of today as they contained deliberate misstatements, twisted facts and were meant to poke fun at politicians and other celebrities. His letters were published in three books, including his best known, The Lazlo Letters.

From there, Novello was hired as a writer for Saturday Night Live, which is where he gained fame with his on-air portrayal of Father Sarducci. His fake priest proved to be one of the more popular characters on SNL and, in 1981, Novello's Sarducci traveled to the Vatican where he eventually was arrested for impersonating a priest.

Novello took one dramatic acting turn by playing Michael Corleone's lawyer, Dominic Abbandando, in The Godfather III.

Don Novello--a New Year's baby...happy birthday, Father Guido!

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