But, of course, for most of his career he's been a successful and inventive comedian. For much of the time, he was writing, directing and starring in his own movies. But before then he was a bizarre and wonderful stand-up. And some of his most outlandish appearances were as a guest on The Tonight Show.
Here's one of those classic appearances, as he brings along his Impressionist Kit. Now that reruns of The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson are beginning today on the Antenna cable channel, this is all the more timely.