Radio comic of the 1930s and '40s.
In July, 1955, had an appendectomy, which caused him to miss two telecasts of What's My Line? (1950) where he had found a home as a regular weekly panelist.
One of Fred Allen's best known schticks was his long-standing feud with fellow comedian Jack Benny. The two often appeared on each other's radio programs to trade barbs. Sadly, other than an appearance on "The Jack Benny Program," in which Fred tries to steal Jack's sponsor, this did not carry over into television, as Allen died shortly after beginning his own TV show. In real life, of course, Benny and Allen were great friends, and Benny even took time on his radio program to eulogize Allen after his death.
Worked in vaudeville under a variety of names, including John Sullivan (the one his parents gave him), Paul Huckle, Fred St. James and Benjamin Franklin.
Fred Allen was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1988.