Congratulations to stand-up comedian Ben Bailey, who last night won his second consecutive Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Game Show Host for his work on Discovery's Cash Cab.
When the presenters read his name during the live ceremony in Las Vegas, it took a while for Bailey to emerge to accept his award. Why? Turns out he was backstage in the men's room. No joke. Bailey said so during his acceptance speech, and then again when CBS gave him a chance to talk to the network's Thank You Cam for YouTube.
Roll the clip!
Stand-up comedian Ben Bailey -- who has won an Emmy for his work hosting the Discovery Channel game show, Cash Cab -- has added a second TV trivia game show to his resume. This time, Bailey is going primetime network, as NBC announced today that he'll be the host of its new quiz show, Who's Still Standing?, when it debuts later this year or in 2012.
Based on an Israeli series (and also familiar to people who watch The Ellen DeGeneres Show, the show offers the chance for one contestant to win up to $1 million by defeating opponents in a fast-paced trivia game, with losing contestants dropping through trap doors in the floor.
"Ben is clever, entertaining and a huge authority in the trivia world," said NBC's Paul Telegdy. "Through its questions, this series taps into so many areas of knowledge and consistently builds to a drop, so everyone at home will enjoy playing along."
"I am really psyched to be hosting this new show 'Who's Still Standing?' because it's totally unlike any other show," said Bailey. "Contestants can win up to a million bucks but they could also drop through the floor, literally. It's got great trivia, it's got big money prizes, and it's got real action and on top of all that, I don't have to deal with driving in any traffic. I am really excited and I can't wait for people to see it."
Coincidentally, Bailey's one-hour special "Road Rage" premiered on Comedy Central on May 21, 2011. He is represented by Gersh.
As a reporter who also has been a comedian, I know all too well how delicate the line is between clever, stupid and just plain wrong when the reporter interviews a comedian and tries too hard to prove the reporter is funny, too.
This morning, Ben Bailey, whom many know and love as the host of Cash Cab, went on WPIX Ch. 11's morning show here in New York City to promote his weekend stint at Carolines. The TV newsman interviewing Bailey forced him to sit behind a fake taxi for the entire interview, and also confessed much too much about his wife's love of the show. Did I mention this was live TV? Roll it.
Not this morning, but taped earlier and shown on WFAA in Dallas, a guy who gets to sit down at movie junkets sat down for the junket for It's Kind of a Funny Story with Zach Galifianakis, and then thought he'd give Galifianakis a bit of his own Between Two Ferns medicine. Whether Galifianakis wanted it or not. Roll it.
Comedians often do press they don't particularly want to do -- whether it's TV or morning radio, or junkets -- precisely for reasons like these two guys.
I've had great and not-so great experiences on live radio and TV appearances myself. I usually try to be in the moment and roll with whatever happens, although in my younger days, I can recall more than one time on early-morning TV when the anchor asked me something that wasn't even close to the topic we were discussing, and me wondering how many viewers may have changed the channel before I answered. Of course, it could have just felt more awkward to me because I was there. And I should say that in my case, the inattentive anchor was a woman. So it's not always the newsman who is the problem.
What's your method for dealing with TV and radio people when you know it's going to be hostile? How do you cope with this kind of hostility when you're not expecting it?
If it ain't broke, don't fix it, right? That's the lesson you might seem to get from the Daytime Emmys, which handed out awards over the weekend to a lot of the same shows they did last year.
Ellen DeGeneres won for outstanding talk show (entertainment division).
Ben Bailey's Cash Cab on the Discovery Channel once again won for outstanding game show, but this time around, Bailey himself also grabbed the individual prize for game show host!
Clean House on the Style Network, with comedian co-hosts Niecy Nash, Matt Iseman and Trish Suhr, won for outstanding special class special.
The nominations for the 37th Annual Daytime Emmys came out today, with eight nominations each for The Ellen DeGeneres Show and comedian-laden The Electric Company, plus three nods for the soon-to-be-cancelled Bonnie Hunt Show. Awards will be handed out June 27 in Las Vegas, televised on CBS. You can view the full list of nominees here.
Also of note for the comedy community...
What a weekend for Lin-Manuel Miranda and Ben Bailey!
Last year, Miranda's hip-hop group Freestyle Love Supreme was preparing for Montreal's Just For Laughs comedy festival while he wondered how to translate a musical he first wrote as a college sophomore into a full-scale Broadway production. Well, Miranda's creation, In the Heights, took home four Tony Awards last night, including Best Musical and Best Original Score. His mates raised him on their shoulders to close out the awards telecast, and he deserved it, along with kudos for his freestyling acceptance speech earlier in the evening. Congrats, Lin-Man!
Also over the weekend, comedian Ben Bailey learned his Discovery Channel show, Cash Cab, had won Best Game Show at the Daytime Emmys, beating Jeopardy and The Price is Right. The Creative Winners were announced Friday night at Lincoln Center, and afterward, Bailey swung by the Comedy Cellar to share his celebratory glow with the Cellar's staff and fellow comedians, and show off his new trophy! Congrats, Ben! Also, I spotted comedian Matt Goldich's name among the writing staff taking home that Emmy for Outstanding Game/Audience Participation Show, so congrats to him, too! The rest of the Daytime Emmys will be broadcast this coming Friday, June 20, from Hollywood on ABC. Does this mean Bailey and the crew get to attend? Either way, Bailey best be prepared for even more people to be recognizing him on the streets now.
As my friends at Best Week Ever would say, in case you missed it, Ben Bailey and his Discovery Channel "Cash Cab" got an extra special promotional push this week on NBC's Today show. Meredith and Ann took on Matt and Al. And if Ben Bailey thought he got recognized beforehand, he'll certainly get a lot more notice on the streets of New York now. If only MSN would get onboard the embed train...
Related: Comedy Central will re-air Ben Bailey's Comedy Central Presents tonight at midnight.
Ben Bailey, photographed by The Comic's Comic last summer cleaning up on a Comedy Cellar cruise, spoke today at an event honoring New York City's best taxi drivers. Wait. Did you think I meant comedy hacks? Nope. Hacks as in cabbies. The New York Daily News published a brief profile of Bailey today.
Related: Discovery Channel's Cash Cab site.
More: Catch plenty of Cash Cab videos and contest spoofs on You Tube.