Congratulations to Anthony DeVito, who was crowned champion of the 2015 Carolines Comedy Madness Stand-Up Tournament. The five-round competition, modeled after the NCAA college basketball “March Madness” tournament, tipped off on February 25 with 64 of New York’s best and brightest young comedians going head-to-head. The field was narrowed down to 32, then The Sweet Sixteen, the Elite Eight, and then down to The Final Four — DeVito, Ryan Beck, Joe Larson and Doug Smith. DeVito bested Larson, and Smith ousted Beck before squaring off against DeVito in the final round. As a prize for winning, the New Jersey native receives a cash prize, a chance to open for a headliner at Carolines on Broadway and a spot to perform at the New York Comedy Festival in November. DeVito joins the class of Carolines Comedy Madness winners which includes Nate Bargatze, Dan Soder, Michael Che, Adam Newman, Mark Normand and Gary Vider. Among the many highlights of this year’s competition was The Elite Eight Round drop in by Kevin Hart, who dropped by the club at the end of the show and surprised the packed house by performing a hilarious 45-minute set.
Dan Soder was the audience favorite in the 2015 showcase for nationally-known comedians. Formerly voted funniest comedian at the New York Comedy Festival, Soder goes home with the title of 2015 Gilda’s LaughFest Seriously Funny Comedian. The 31-year-old comedian has appeared on Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer, performed on Conan, been a part of MTV2’s Guy Code, and had a half hour special on Comedy Central in May 2013. Soder last fall had his own six-week show on SiriusXM’s Comedy Central Radio alongside Big Jay Oakerson, who appeared in Grand Rapids last week for LaughFest 2015’s Blue & Late Night Comedy Series. Here’s his latest spot on Conan.
If you don’t know who Kevin Hart is, well, to say you are “living under a rock” would be the understatement of 2015. In the brief two months and some change of the current calendar year, Hart has starred in The Wedding Ringer, been knighted at the Roast Master for the upcoming Comedy Central Roast of Justin Bieber, announced over 70 shows and pre-sold more than 600,000 tickets to his What Now? stadium tour, and will now receive the comedy star of the year award at CinemaCon, the upcoming exhibition industry conference. The comic star has emerged as one of the movie business’s most reliable box office draws, starring in the such hits as Ride Along and Think Like a Man. He’s also been wildly prolific, appearing in more than a half dozen movies over the past two years. Hart will next appear opposite Will Ferrell in this March’s Get Hard and it’s never too early to start thinking about the Ride Along sequel as well. And let’s not forget about Real Husbands of Hollywood has been picked up for a fourth season on BET. Hart will pick up his award at CinemaCon’s awards ceremony on April 23 at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.
After three days of shows at The B.O.B. ended Saturday night, the audience vote determined the winner of the 2015 Gilda’s LaughFest Audience Favorite Clean Comedy Award. That award went to comedian Andrew Norelli. No stranger to late-night, Norelli has made appearances on The Late Show with David Letterman, Jimy Kimmel Live, and The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson. Norelli described LaughFest as one of the biggest comedy festivals in the country and “an all around unicorn of a time.” He’s a native of Danville, California and some of his other credits include Comedy Central’s Live at Gotham and the nationally syndicated comedy round table, Comic Unleashed. LaughFest’s Clean Comedy Showcase has been a festival favorite since the showcase debuted in 2012 featuring comedians who steer clear of salty language and “going blue” as it’s known in the trade. The rest of the field included Todd Andrews, Erin Foley, P.J. Walsh, Tracey Ashley, Sid Davis, Dale Jones and Joe List. Read More
In case you missed one of the most exciting moments of the Oscars, here it is again for all the fun. The Lonely Island penned the Oscar nominated theme song to The Lego Movie, “Everything Is Awesome.” During ceremony last night, they rolled out all the stops for the performance which included breakdancers, Tegan & Sara,
Will Arnett Batman guitar solos in the Val Kilmer batsuit, Mark Mothersbaugh, and Questlove. It was so weirdly out of place for the uptight Oscars that it just works. While we’re on the topic, no animated nomination for The Lego Movie? Read More
On Saturday TechCrunch responded to a firestorm over the offensive performance of the emcee of its annual Crunchies awards Thursday night, saying Silicon Valley star T.J. Miller won’t be asked back. Miller started the show edgy and then went headlong over the edge after getting into a verbal joust with Uber founder Travis Kalanick’s date, during which he called her a “bitch” more than once. Gabi Holzwarth, Kalanick’s date, forgave Miller in a tweet right after the show but added later in another,”10 yrs ago, I was called a bitch…not ok. Yesterday I was called a bitch… still not ok. Let’s try moving away from that word. #stayclassy” The situation puts the spotlight back on gender diversity in Silicon Valley’s tech community and echoes an incident at a TechCrunch hackathon in the fall of 2013 after which the tech news site issued an apology and adopted an anti-harassment policy for its events. For those who don’t remember, one of the pitches at that hackathon involved an app concept built around men staring at women’s breasts. Another involved a guy simulating masturbation during his pitch. Miller clearly violated that policy and it took TechCrunch two days to acknowledge that officially. Read More
Pop duo Tegan and Sara and comedy-music trio The Lonely Island will perform the Oscar-nominated song “Everything is Awesome” at the 87th Oscars. “Tegan and Sara and The Lonely Island?… Everything is Awesome, indeed. This is certainly an ‘Only on the Oscars’ moment,” says Oscar producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron. “Everything is Awesome,” written by Shawn Patterson for the animated feature The Lego Movie, is nominated for Original Song. A comedy, music and filmmaking trio composed of Saturday Night Live alumni Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone, The Lonely Island has released three studio albums and several gold and platinum singles. “I’m On A Boat,” featuring singer-songwriter T-Pain, achieved double-platinum status and earned a 2009 Grammy nomination for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration. The group is responsible for one of the biggest channels on YouTube, garnering over 1.5 billion views.
Weird Al wins the Grammy for Best Comedy Album, Joan Rivers best Spoken Word, Tenacious D get Metal win
Weird Al just topped off a monster year, as his latest album, Mandatory Fun just picked up a Grammy for Best Comedy album of the Year. To recap, Yankovic released a week’s worth of star-studded music videos to promote the release of Fun. Making the music video relevant again for at least a small time. Yankovic’s fans paid him back by giving him the #1 album in the country, a feat that hasn’t been done in 51 years.
It’s the perfect end to a great year to the veteran, even as he was up against some stiff competition from other monster comedians like Louis C.K., Jim Gaffigan, Sarah Silverman, and Patton Oswalt, who while joking with his competition pretty much said that Yankovic better win.
Dick Gregory, comedian and civil rights activist, was presented with the 2,542nd star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Monday. Born Richard Claxton Gregory in St. Louis, he began his career as a comedian while serving in the military after being drafted in 1954 while attending Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. He moved to Chicago to perform comedy professionally after being discharged in 1956. He attributes the launch of his career to famed Playboy Magazine founder Hugh Hefner, who hired Gregory to work at the Chicago Playboy Club. By 1963, Gregory was one of the highest paid entertainers in the world. Among his countless career highlights include being honored with special tributes by Coretta Scott King, Stevie Wonder, Isaac Hayes and Cicely Tyson at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C in 2000, appearing in numerous films, writing 14 books and completing 15 comedy albums featuring his stand up acts and political commentary. Gregory is listed as No. 82 on the Comedy Central network’s list of The 100 Greatest Stand-Ups of All Time.
Award season will soon be upon us. Today, the nominees for the 2015 Golden Globes were announced. Most notably, HBO’s Silicon Valley, Girls, Amazon’s Transparent, Orange is the New Black, and Jane the Virgin win nominations for Best TV Comedy. Both Jane the Virgin, Transparent, and Silicon Valley are newcomers, debuting their series’ first seasons just this year. Gina Rodriguez also locked up another win for Jane the Virgin with a nomination for Best Actress in a TV Series, Comedy. Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Taylor Schilling, Lena Dunham, and Edie Falco round out the rest of the group.
Jeffrey Tambor continues to wow the critics, locking up a nomination for Best Actor in a TV Series, Comedy for his role in Transparent. Also on the bill are Don Cheadle, Ricky Gervais, Louis C.K., and William H. Macy. The Golden Globes are the only major award show to split their Best Picture category up into two categories: Drama and Musical or Comedy (because Les Mis was too whimsical and upbeat to be considered a drama). Birdman, Into the Woods, St. Vincent, Pride, and Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel earned Best Picture Musical or Comedy nominations. Anderson’s Budapest Hotel also earned his a nomination for Best Director and Best Screenplay.
Check out the full list of comedy nominees below: Read More