Posts Tagged FOX

In Living Color No Longer Among The Living

Lots of people were looking forward to the remake of Fox’s “In Living Color”, and I was one of them. I felt a kinship with the rebirth of the show because I was a tiny bit helpful in scheduling some of the auditions.

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Keenen Ivory Wayans out in the cold after auditions at The Laugh Lounge in NYC! The auditions were actually done indoors! LOL

LA producer Shauna Garr was working directly with Keenen Ivory Wayans the creator of the original show, who was very particular in the type of talent he was looking for. People who do characters, and especially a multitude of characters are few and far between.

L.A. Producer Shauna Garr with Richie Tienken owner/founder of The Comic Strip at the auditions I helped arrange!

That’s why I think Nick Kroll is so amazing, because he does so many characters and does them so well, as is evidenced on his new show on Comedy Central, which debuted on Wed. 1/16/13 simply called “Kroll Show”!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Nick Kroll (L) and his writing partner John Mulaney from SNL at a comedy event in NYC!

I had two talented friends on the planned re-make. One was Jermaine Fowler who I got to know at The Comic Strip, and from some shows we did together, and the other was my longtime friend Kali Hawk, who has done amazing things out in Hollywood in both film and TV. I know her since she was just starting out in NYC, and I’m really proud of all her hard-won accomplishments.

Jeffrey Gurian from Comedy Matters TV and the spectacular Kali Hawk in LA at a party for Jeffrey’s book “Filthy, Funny, and Totally Offensive!” And if you look closely I think I’m wearing her necklace, cause it sure isn’t MINE!!!

This past summer up in Montreal at the Just for Laughs Festival, the biggest comedy festival in the world, I was chosen as the official celeb interviewer, and did 40 interviews, including one with Jermaine Fowler and one with L’il Rel who was also cast for the show!

I’ve had a lot of last minute major disappointments in my life, where things that were supposed to happen didn’t happen, so I can only imagine how the cast members felt to learn their big break was not going to be on this show.

Will Harris wrote in the NY Post that Keenen Ivory Wayans said, ” The bar for “In Living Color” is so high that, if I didn’t feel like we could sustain that, then I did not want to move forward.” I totally get that. Because when you remake a hit show, people expect it to be exponentially better and with the cast that came out of the original show, like Jim Carrey and Jamie Foxx, that would be some formidable task.

In that same article, FOX’s Pres. of Entertainment, Kevin Reilly was quoted as saying, ” The stars just didn’t align. I think the pilot made was pretty funny, but it just didn’t feel like we had the players. It didn’t feel like a series prospect, and I didn’t want to do just a one-off special.”

So all that work, and all that casting and travel and auditioning, and tension and stress was for nothing! Not really though, because everything you do in this business is HUGE. Most people will never even get the chance to be cast on a show, so the people that were should still feel very special!

I had fun helping Shauna and Keenen with the casting, by setting up some auditions at The Comic Strip and by sending a couple of people down to The Laugh Lounge, including a young, talented comic named Tyler Fisher who I think is gonna be very big!

Two comedy talents headed for stardom, Jermaine Fowler and Tyler Fischer!

I also got to be great friends with Chaunte Wayans, the daughter of one of the Wayans sisters, who’s a really funny comic as well based out of Atlanta! Watch out for her too!

Chaunte Wayans killin’ it onstage at The Comic Strip!

And on that note I’m out!

www.HyperSmash.com

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Aries Spears Kills It At Gotham Comedy Club

Aries Spears’ website identifies him as “The Funniest Muther-F#*ker On The Planet” and I don’t think I’d argue with that. Most people tend to hype themselves, but in Aries’ case it’s true. I can see why he was a star on Mad TV. His characters, and ability to do dialects, are amazing. And Gotham Comedy Club was packed to capacity, which not all comics can do.

To give you an idea of how crowded it was, they had to put two strangers at my table, cause they were totally out of space! And I was cool with that! They happened to be nice people!

Jeffrey Gurian from Comedy Matters TV with L.A. comic Aries Spears at Gotham Comedy Club!

Jimmy Failla was the MC and opened with a strong set. Opening a show the right way is so important. It gets the crowd in the mood to laugh. Jimmy just has that way about him, and coupled with strong material makes for a good host.

Jimmy Failla onstage at Gotham getting the audience in a good mood!

I always knew that hosting was difficult, but when I started doing it myself at The Comic Strip, I REALLY appreciated how much harder it is than just doing a regular spot. A few nights later, Jimmy and I got to perform together at Gotham on Alyse Kenny’s comedy show for the charity, “The Cure Is Now”! Alyse produces a once a month show at Gotham in the Vintage Lounge, each month benefitting a different charity.

Veronica Mosey took the stage next, … and refused to tell us where she put it! (LOL) That’s so silly, but it reminds me of the line, ” I’m a hard act to follow cause when I leave the stage, I take the mic with me!”

Veronica Mosey doing her comedy thing at Aries Spears’ show at Gotham!

Veronica is always funny, and in a male dominated world, manages to hold her own! She recently got married and was also just profiled on National Lampoon’s Interview Show, the week after I was. You can see her interview at www.nationallampoon.com

Areis did at least an hour seamlessly. Never at a loss for what to do next. He jokes about Blacks and Whites equally, and does an incredible imitation of a “White” voice! He says he uses that voice when he’s talking to a white girl, so that he feels white. As he tells that story he plays the classic Rick Springfield rock song in the background, ” Jessie’s Girl”.

He also does a variety of great ” Black” voices which answers the question that many white people have, whether Black people know that they talk a certain way! Not only do they know, but they can modify it and even “Black it up” when they feel they need to! (LOLOL)

Aries says, you know you’re a big star when you can sell out Africa!

He says that Maury Povich’s show is “Black ignorance at it’s finest!”, which may be the best summation I ever heard.

He said, ” You’ll never see Black people on shows like, ” When Animals Attack.” Black people are too smart for that, to mess with wild animals. You may however see them on shows like
“When Cops Attack!”

He jokes about Africans being so black, that he told one African guy, ” If you stood against a building you’d like like the entryway to an alley!”

He likes when Black people go out to a show and when the bill comes, one person inevitably says, ” Who ordered gratuity???”

The multi-talented Aries Spears making a point during his sold-out show at Gotham Comedy Club!

He wants to be a film star but he thinks he needs to lose some weight first. He says, “You know you have to lose weight when you have to catch your breath from breathing!”

He also does great Indian and English accents, and fantastic impressions of Arnold Schwartzeneggar, and Denzel Washington! (If I had just written “Denzel”, would you have known who I meant? LOL)

And then as a finale he does a rap song while imitating all the rappers like Snoop, DMX, Method Man, Biggie and Jay-Z. The man is an entertainment phenomenon, and if you get a chance to see him go for it!

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