Bang a Gong for Chuck Barris

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"No, no," Eubanks said. "What I'm talking about is the weirdest location."

For many years, TV researchers claimed that this story was untrue. Even Eubanks had his doubts. But Clooney unearthed the tape of that controversial broadcast.

Tom Selleck Can’t Score

In 1968, a United Airlines trainee, Tom Selleck, failed twice as a bachelor contestant on The Dating Game. But don't feel too bad. A casting agent saw him and Twentieth Century Fox signed him to a $35-a-week contract. He grew that Magnum P.I. mustache, and the rest is history.

Other future stars who tried to score on TV: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Farrah Fawcett, Steve Martin (before his hair grayed) and Andy Kaufman, who pretended to be a confused foreigner and refused to answer any questions.

Gong Show Rejects The Gong Show was originally supposed to be a real talent show, with one or two offbeat acts to spice things up.

"All the acts — the winner and losers — would love the show because they would be getting what they wanted more than money," he says. "Exposure."

But Barris quickly changed plans, finding that TV viewers preferred had an endless appetite for kooks who sang dreadful versions of "Feelings."

Here are some Gong Show legends:

• Count Banjula — a banjo-playing vampire, who would wear a black cape and fangs, hang upside down, and strum down-home folks songs. • A 300-pound lady in a bikini singing, "Your Cheating Heart." • A pair of boys dressed as a vagina and umbilical cord singing, "You're Having My Baby." • A woman standing on her head while singing "Life Is a Dream." • The stripping accountant.

The panel of B-list celebrity judges disposed of each act accordingly, and Barris would come on stage, top hat pulled over his squinty eyes with an obnoxious introduction: "Our next act says he's only semi-professional. That's OK, because we're only quasi-interested." And if things ever got slow Barris had regulars: Gene Patton, a fat stagehand with two left feet, better known as "Gene Gene the Dancing Machine," and Murray Langston, a.k.a. "The Unknown Comic."