As part of the famed SCTV comedy troupe during the mid 1970s, the late John Candy played generous losers and big-hearted chumps who were never pathetic, but loveable and genuine. It would be an act that the Newmarket, Ontario-born comedian translated into box office success in more than 40 feature films.
As a boy, Candy dreamt of playing in the Canadian Football League, but a severe knee injury prevented any tryouts. So he turned to the next best thing -- a career in sports journalism. He enrolled in a media/journalism program at Centennial College in 1968 and found his true talent: television performer/entertainer.
John landed many a small part in Canadian projects, both in film and television, and was cast as a regular on the short lived children's show, "Dr. Zunk and the Zunkins". This role led to another role in children's television on "Coming Up Rosie", which saw Candy cast alongside Dan Ayrkroyd and Catherine O'Hara. The rest, as they say, is television history.
One of the skits Candy did on SCTV was "The Schmenge Brothers," with partner and funnyman Eugene Levy. Yosh and Stan Schmenge gained so much popularity that it was given its own HBO special called "The Last Polka." Candy earned two Emmy Awards for writing for SCTV.
His Hollywood successes include some comic classics like "Planes, Trains and Automobiles," "Uncle Buck," "1941," "Canadian Bacon" and "Cool Runnings." As part of an illustrious group of Canadian comics who found Hollywood glory, Candy had a singular charm. He could be as funny as anyone, but what set him apart was tenderness and a gentle, emotional honesty that made him instantly credible and loveable.
Sadly, John Candy passed away in his prime at the young age of 43. He was filming "Wagons East" in Mexico at the time. Candy is survived by his wife Rosemary Candy and their children. Upon his induction Rosemary was quoted as saying that she "is very proud of the accomplishments and contributions made to the Canadian entertainment industry by my late husband."
Candy's first ever television performance was at CBC's Toronto headquarters, where he appeared in the children's classics as "Coming Up Rosie" and later in "Dr. Zonk and the Zunkins."