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Joan Rivers Got Her Big Break Because 1 Talk Show Host Made a Mistake

She’s known as a Hollywood trailblazer, expanding what audiences and the women inspired by her legacy thought was possible from a successful female comic. And like most artistic innovators, the late Joan Rivers’ ascent was due to a combination of incredible talent and a touch of luck surrounding her big break.

She performed in comedy clubs across New York throughout the early ’60s. She appeared on the Jack Paar edition of The Tonight Show at the beginning of the decade. But her stand-up spots on The Ed Sullivan Show played a big role in her mainstream breakthrough. For all the work Rivers was doing as a comedian, she received her place on the platform because of an error by Sullivan. 



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