Born in 1950, Landis made his filmmaking debut with the micro-budget creature feature “Schlock” (1973), in which he also starred as an apeman terrorizing a Southern California suburb. It was the first collaboration between him and makeup maestro Rick Baker, who went on to win the first Academy Award for Best Makeup for the director’s “An American Werewolf in London” (1981).
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Landis had his greatest successes with comedies, starting with the sketch compilation “The Kentucky Fried Movie” (1977), written by the “Airplane!” trio of Jim Abrahams, David Zucker and Jerry Zucker. He went on to helm