Feature

Betty White’s surprising renaissance

The 88-year-old actress has been enjoying a career renaissance that started with a wildly popular Super Bowl ad for Snickers.

Betty White is back, said T.L. Stanley in the Los Angeles Times. The 88-year-old actress, who got her first gig in television in 1949 and became a comedic favorite for her roles on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Golden Girls, has been enjoying a surprising career renaissance. It all began with a wildly popular Super Bowl ad for Snickers in which she plays tackle football with a group of grubby young men. Suddenly, the saucy White is everywhere: jumping into the shower with Hugh Jackman on The Tonight Show, gyrating with Chippendales dancers on Ellen, signing deals to appear in several upcoming sitcoms and films.

“It’s ridiculous at my age to have all this going on,” White says. “I’m not fighting it—I’m loving it.” By popular demand, she’ll host Saturday Night Live in May. “It’s so New York, and I’m not so New York,” says White of the show. “But my manager told me in no uncertain terms that I should do it now.” If people like her ribald sense of humor, White says, it’s because she tries not to overthink a joke. “You can’t think about comedy too much and keep it funny,” she says. “You just have to let it pop out.”

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