Conan O’Brien may have pulled off one of the greatest celebrity pranks of all time, convincing Bill Cosby in the 1980s that he had won a lifetime achievement award from the Harvard Lampoon, a non-existent honor that the comedian appeared in a tuxedo to accept.
Speaking on the Howard Stern Show, O’Brien revealed details of the incredible prank. While at Harvard in the 1980s, he asserted that he was able to convince Cosby he had won the award, inducing the comedian to travel to the Ivy League institution in a private jet, ready to accept it.
“I honestly wanted to meet him,” O’Brien claimed. “I think it came from a good place.”
Conan and his fellow Harvard Lampoon writers prank Bill Cosby with a fake award back in the 80’s. pic.twitter.com/7Ahua6n12I
— Brian Stack (@BrianStack153) February 26, 2015
When Cosby arrived, he was already wearing a tuxedo, and O’Brien noted that the popular comedian was hardly expecting the vehicle waiting to pick him up, according to the Daily Mail. Instead of renting a limo for Cosby, O’Brien had gone back to his family’s Brookline home and borrowed his father’s used station wagon, replete with wood sides and the logo of the inn that had previously owned it.
“He walks out, and I’m like, ‘Mr. Cosby! Hey!'” O’Brien recalled. “And he’s looking past me for the stretch limo… and there’s no stretch limo. So I opened the door and went, ‘It’s in here, c’mon!'”
While driving Cosby to Cambridge for the award, O’Brien even recalled an awkward moment as the comedian picked up a hamburger wrapper from the back seat in puzzlement.
Once arriving at the school, O’Brien recollected that Cosby accepted the Lifetime Achievement in Comedy award from the Harvard Lampoon, looking pleased to receive it. The award, however, was simply an old bowling trophy that the group had purchased and altered.
A “massive crowd” had gathered to see Cosby, O’Brien noted, as he was one of the biggest stars in the world, and the Lampoon had revealed to many in the school that he would be visiting.
“He comes out, and that’s when I saw what a master he is. I saw this guy not really do material, he just went out. But in that Bill Cosby way, he’s got the rhythm.”
Recently, another accuser has come forward to allege that Bill Cosby had sexually assaulted her in the past, as the Inquisitr previously reported.
[Photos by Ethan Miller and Pascal Le Segretain/ Getty Images]