The 2011 TBS Just For Laughs Chicago comedy festival has added some more names, and big names, too, as Martin Short will return to the festival this June, but with Steve Martin!
Other additions include Seth Meyers, Ron White, Rodney Carrington and Jo Koy, while Hannibal Buress, Kumail Nanjiani, Kristen Schaal and Paul F. Tompkins have been named as the "special guests, who are also comedians and friends of" Demetri Martin for his June 16 show at the festival.
THE CHICAGO THEATRE: Steve Martin and Martin Short in a Very Stupid Conversation – Sunday, June 19 at 7:30 p.m. For the first time ever, two of the funniest Martins – Steve Martin and Martin Short – perform together on stage for the first time, taking to The Chicago Theatre for a historical event June 19 with their special show Steve Martin and Martin Short in a Very Stupid Conversation.
THE ROSEMONT THEATRE: Ron White & Rodney Carrington – Wednesday, June 15, at 8 p.m.
THE VIC THEATRE: Seth Meyers – Saturday, June 18, at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets for the new added shows go on sale April 30.
For a third straight year, Just For Laughs has partnered with TBS to venture into Chicago in June for a multi-day comedy festival featuring top-name comedy talent.
While we wait to see which locals make the cut, here's the initial slate of headliners. George Lopez and Russell Peters make return trips to the Windy City to join up for one show at the Rosemont, Jim Jefferies will be back (this time with his green card). Other big names include Louis CK, Demetri Martin, Joel McHale, a quadruple bill featuring Dave Attell, Jim Breuer, Bill Burr and Jim Norton, solo shows by Whitney Cummings and Tim Minchin, and a special roast of Chicago by Jeffrey Ross. Here's how the initial schedule looks. Twix returns as the corporate sponsor for TBS Just For Laughs Chicago from June 14-18, 2011.
THE CHICAGO THEATRE
The Anti-Social Network (Dave Attell, Jim Breuer, Bill Burr and Jim Norton) – Wednesday, June 15, at 7:30 p.m.
Demetri Martin & Special Guests, Who are Also Comedians and are Friends of His – Thursday, June 16, at 7:30 p.m.
Joel McHale & Friends and Acquaintances– Friday, June 17, at 7:30 p.m.
Louis C.K. and Three Very Special Guests – Saturday, June 18, at 7:30 p.m.
THE ROSEMONT THEATRE
George Lopez & Russell Peters – Saturday, June 18, at 8 p.m.
Jim Jefferies – Thursday, June 16, at 7:30 p.m.
THE VIC THEATRE
Whitney Cummings – Thursday, June 16, at 7:30 p.m.
Jeffrey Ross Roasts Chicago – Friday, June 17, at 7:30 p.m.
Tim Minchin – Tuesday, June 14 to Saturday, June 18 – 10:00 p.m.
Tickets go on sale Saturday, April 2.
“We couldn’t be more excited to partner with Just For Laughs in bringing the hottest names in comedy to Chicago for a third year,” said Dennis Adamovich, senior vice president of brand and digital activation/general manager of festivals for TBS, TNT and Turner Classic Movies (TCM). “Chicago is a terrific town full of people who really know and love great comedy. We’re pulling out all the stops to make this year’s festival the best yet.”
“At the beginning stages of every festival booking season, we start with our dream list,” says Bruce Hills, chief operating officer of Just For Laughs. “This year we have not only met our dream list, we have exceeded it. Chicago audiences are in for quite a treat.”
The first person we see on tonight's TBS special, Team Coco Presents The Conan Writers Live, is a writer of the online variety as Team Coco's blogger Aaron Bleyaert visits the dressing room of host Andy Richter.
The first person we see performing onstage is Reggie Watts, the musical talent and Team Coco's opening act on this spring's North American theater tour as suggested by Conan's TV writers. Watts provides the special's theme music and also delivers a rather straightforward -- well, in as much as anything Watts does can be construed as straightforward -- song about women who carry big ass purses.
And as Richter notes in his opening monologue, it's a wonder any of the writers are getting primetime TV exposure, joking: "The main reason you're getting to see them at all is because Conan cannot be on TV until the fall. And as I think everybody knows by now, Conan is very easily threatened and unbelievably insecure. So he has been keeping these guys down for years. But not tonight!"
As for the writers who we do get to see on TV, Brian Kiley kicks things off properly with a tight five-minute set of his well-crafted one-liners about parenting. After the first commercial break, Richter introduces Deon Cole by noting that Cole had performed so well as a stand-up on Conan's show that they hired him to join the writing staff full-time. Cole, a native of the Chicago suburbs, joked about curing a hangover with a hangover, what it's like to be the only black person in the writers' room, and closed with a routine about the things black and white people don't want to do in front of the other race.
Jimmy Pardo, the warm-up comedian for Conan O'Brien's Tonight Show audiences, gets a shout-out for his Never Not Funny podcast in Richter's introduction. And I'm going to avoid the trap Pardo set for bloggers, instead choosing to focus on his otherwise meta routine and his one-liner roast of Watts, who remained onstage throughout the taping: "What don't you have: Scissors or a mirror?"
Josh Comers got introduced with the selling point of still having "that new writer smell." Comers wondered why little girls would ever wear a T-shirt saying "You Wish" across the chest, what it's like when your landlord is a Holocaust survivor, and boasted that one joke makes him lose 10 Facebook friends every time he tells it. You'll know it when you hear it.
Andres du Bouchet closes out the special, and Richter introduced him as a veteran of the NYC comedy scene since 1996 and, for Conan's viewers, as the "Tiger Woods joke caddy." Du Bouchet came out in character with a smoking jacket and gave the audience a preview of the one-man musical about his life: "100 and Me Percent: The Andres du Bouchet Saga." And yes, he did include the number about 9/11.
For those of you keeping track, Matt O'Brien and Dan Cronin also performed sets at the tapings which did not make it to broadcast. Eric Andre also provided an energetic stand-up routine as the warm-up comedian.
Team Coco Presents The Conan Writers Live debuts at 10 p.m. Eastern tonight on TBS.
In her fourth variety special for TBS, and second filmed from the Just For Laughs Chicago comedy festival, Ellen DeGeneres welcomes back Nick Cannon as her DJ, and also showcases the quick-change artists seen previously on America's Got Talent, acrobats, a magician, a heartfelt audience Q&A that -- since today marked Gay Pride Parades around the country -- seems more than fitting for DeGeneres, and a guest stand-up performance by Chicago native John Mulaney.
The Mulaney clip isn't online yet -- Ellen's Somewhat Special Special debuts at 9 p.m. Eastern tonight on TBS -- but includes his observations on how old crimes could easily become Cold Case Files, and a rephrasing of his routine on what he'd do with the big budgets for blockbuster movies.
Here, though, is a sneak peek at Ellen's opening monologue, with observations about Chicago, names, and and an appearance by the Stanley Cup-winning Chicago Blackhawks.
I also had the chance at Just For Laughs Chicago to talk to David Wain, who along with Rob Corddry and Jonathan Stern is the third executive producer, and sometimes writer and director of Childrens' Hospital. Wain helps explain how they changed the show to make it more TV-friendly, how several other funny people have helped out in writing the show, and why Wain has no plans to try to turn his MyDamnChannel series Wainy Days into a TV show.
At the Just For Laughs Chicago festival last week, Rob Corddry showed up with his fellow Childrens' Hospital producers David Wain and Jonathan Stern and co-stars Erinn Hayes and Lake Bell to offer a sneak peek at three episodes of the series that's making the jump from online to TV later this summer on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim.
It contains the same ridiculous and often outrageous sensibilities as the web series did, with turns from Rob Huebel, Megan Mullally, Henry Winkler, Malin Akerman, Ken Marino and a wide array of guest stars.
Alas, the Childrens' Hospital screening and Q&A took place last Thursday night at the same time as Team Coco was taping a TBS special at a sold-out theater downtown, Aziz Ansari had packed another theater, The Second City's Class of 1979 was putting on a charity reunion performance, and, oh, the NBA's biggest teams, Lakers-Celtics, was down to Game Seven. That still should have left a million Chicagoans to show up at Park West, right? Not quite. There were plenty of empty seats at Park West, which prompted Corddry and his colleagues to start their show on an odd foot, and it just got darker and weirder from there. Before I go on, this is what Corddry had to say to me after the show, in which he explained how Adult Swim is a perfect TV home for Childrens' Hospital and you can tell by his tone how he was feeling.
OK. So, yeah. There were a few more than 15 people there, but the size of the room made it feel much more awkward -- well, that, and the decision by the cast to turn the planned audience Q&A into a two-way roast between the cast and the audience.
One actual Q that got an actual A from Corddry: Why the clown-faced makeup? "I hate clowns. I think clowns think that they're funny, but nobody takes themselves more seriously than clowns."
We did get to see three new 11-minute episodes, including "Joke Overload," which guest stars Jeffrey Ross as himself, Clark Duke as a Trekkie and Adam Scott as a Klingon doctor, and Ernie Hudson as a patient; "You Know No One Can Hear You, Right?" with Ed Begley Jr. and Rachael Harris as a couple that wants to abort their teen-aged son; and "Hot Enough For You?" filmed in a noirish tone. And with Henry Winkler on board with the cast as the hospital administrator, the cast decided to serenade Winkler onstage -- well, a fake Winkler -- by singing the theme to Happy Days with Wain accompanying on guitar. You know what? I do have the last lines of this on video, so why not share it, even if it's not the whole song:
And here's a clip of Corddry in character comparing his show to other medical shows on the TV:
Childrens Hospital begins airing July 11 on Adult Swim with the webisodes playing two at a time for five weeks, with a week off of the schedule along the way before the second season debuts on Aug. 22.
If you tune in tonight to TBS for Cedric The Entertainer's Urban Circus, then you'll probably wonder what in the world is going on when Cedric is shooing kids away from a picnic table, only to turn around and find Jerry Seinfeld amble onstage.
Seinfeld, for his part, quips on the special: "I am urban. I was born in Brooklyn." He shares some very old jokes of his, then joins Cedric to re-enact his old bit about driving a space shuttle to the Moon (as pictured above).
What about the rest of the special, you ask?
When is JB Smoove himself and when is he Leon Black? I guess that depends upon whether you can tell when "The Ruckus" is upon us.
As I learned the other day in Chicago, in the rock garden outside the Westin River North Hotel, it doesn't take much to get JB Smoove on a roll. Here he is delivering some life lessons to me, or should I say, handing me my ass in an interview. Know what I mean? Roll the clip!
I cut the clip into two parts, and as we continued, he also demonstrated why every person is unique, and instead of going with the snowflake metaphor, JB Smoove shows us how God uses his own pottery wheel. He also contemplates the difference between snot and tears. You have to see him to believe him!
If you enjoyed that, then you'll be sure to enjoy him when he performs June 23 on TBS as part of Cedric The Entertainer's Urban Circus, and in July, when he hosts Russell Simmons Presents Stand-Up on Comedy Central.
JB Smoove also will be hosting a live video chat tonight -- 9 p.m. Eastern, 6 p.m. Pacific -- with fans of Curb Your Enthusiasm to talk about his character, Leon Black, and the TV Guide panels that discuss the Curb repeats. Go to:
Chicago sports fans at the first of two sold-out "Da Bears" shows Saturday night at Just For Laughs Chicago were treated not only to a roast of former Bears coach Mike Ditka, but also saw Robert Smigel and the rest of the famous Saturday Night Live "Superfans" auction off a commemorative plate with Ditka's picture, flipping off a fan during the 1980s, to raise money for the Gridiron Greats Assistance Fund. Turned out that Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster, also in attendance, offered $3,000 for the plate in exchange for Ditka's promise that he'd show up to a charity event Dempster is hosting in July.
As for the photo itself, Smigel said the infamous photo was taken in Green Bay, but Ditka corrected him and joked that the incident happened with a drunken fan at Chicago's Soldier Field, and added that a member of the paparazzi inspired him to also make another offensive gesture with his hands.
Ditka grabbed the plate to sign it and jokingly asked, "How do you spell Barack?" Of course, back in 2004, Ditka almost ran against Barack Obama for the U.S. Senate seat in Illinois as a conservative Republican. If the Superfans had their way, Ditka would've won and we would be living in an alternate universe. But Ditka didn't run. Nor did he take a jab at Obama in this autograph.
The Team Coco presents The Conan Writers Live was a big hit last night at Chicago's Bank of America Theater, but I can tell you that perhaps it was too much of a big hit.
The show, hosted by Andy Richter and featuring musical wonders from Reggie Watts, included stand-up sets from eight of the writers for Conan O'Brien's short-lived edition of The Tonight Show on NBC. But there's only room for six of them to perform on the 60-minute special, set to air on TBS at 10 p.m. Sunday, June 27. So who will make the cut? What if they all performed well during the taping? Couldn't TBS just extend the special to 90 minutes if it's all "very funny"? The special debuts late on a Sunday after the Ellen DeGeneres variety special, so it's not as if they're going to push anything major off the air to make do. A quick look at the schedule listings for June 27 shows that TBS plans to immediately repeat both Ellen and Coco, followed by a 1 a.m. rebroadcast of the movie, Vegas Vacation. I'm sure Chevy wouldn't mind getting bumped, right?
As for the show itself, it was more than a little heartwarming to see the audience immediately take to Watts even before the taping itself began. I had to scramble to find a seat because my seat in Row G had been (mild spoiler alert?) occupied by a young Conan doppelganger.
Host Andy Richter explained onstage that since Conan himself cannot be on the special -- due to the terms he negotiated upon his exit from NBC -- that meant his writers would get to have this time in the limelight. "Tonight they get to tell their dick jokes in their own voices!" Richter boasted.
Except now it looks like two of them might not get to be seen on TV. That's not fun. To add to the awkwardness, none of "The Conan Writers" actually have jobs with TBS yet. Yes. You read that right. TBS has signed Conan, but since he, Richter and some of his writers have been spending their entire spring on a North American theater tour, the budgeting for the new late-night show on TBS has not included hiring any of the writers. Of course, you'd suspect that anyone Conan brought along on his official "Team Coco" tour and branded on the TV as "The Conan Writers" would be reasonably assured of a full-time writing job in the fall. Just like you'd reasonably think they'd get their time on TV next weekend. Right? Right???
UPDATED: For those of you wondering, the eight sets did not include any of the sketch performers from Conan's various late-night TV shows, but did include Matt O'Brien, Jimmy Pardo, Josh Comers, Brian Kiley, Andres du Bouchet, Dan Cronin, Deon Cole and a Reggie Watts set.
Comedian/actor T.J. Miller came back to Chicago this week and brought some of his Windy City comedy friends back with him for a stand-up show billed as "Drinking Buddies," and the buddies certainly believed the drinking part was mandatory for the evening, in back-to-back shows that went well into Wednesday night at the Lincoln Lodge.
Host James Fritz complained early on that the Lincoln Lodge and JFL hadn't gotten with the program. "All they have for us backstage is water!" Fritz made do with the cash bar.
Mike Bridenstine (pictured) opened by commenting on Fritz and the fellow Chicago comedy scene and how gross they are. As for his drinking story, Brido shared that he had gotten drunk as a sixth-grader when his eighth-grade sister held a houseparty when their parents were away. "Aw, hell, no!" On a more sobering note, he also has written a great TV ad for a karate place that could join the pantheon of infamous local TV ads, whether in Chicago or anywhere.
Kyle Kinane was ready for "Showtime!" "I buy my beer in 12-packs so I'm not such a boozebag," Kinane claimed. "I like to get my exercise, so when I'm done, I can walk back and get more." He joked with the crowd about being so drunk, that he has pretended to take a cell phone call to mask his puking. But he's not built for drinking, apparently. "I'm not good at it," he joked. "But I keep coming back, because I think one of these nights, I'm going to figure it out. I'm like Rudy!"
Headliner Miller joked that his buddies may have taken the show's title a bit too literally by getting drunk before the show, although as he noted, with beer mugs as large as the ones the Lincoln Lodge sells, it's not that difficult. He said those mugs are big enough to expose your loneliness to the world. "Do you have another one that I can get into?" he asked. Miller also shared stories about filming the upcoming Yogi Bear movie, which he said is coming out in 3-D and features a song by Justin Timberlake. That prompted a reply from a female audience member in the back of the room. Only the Lincoln Lodge isn't that large. "Yes, ma'am, I am serious, and I can hear you when you say, 'Are you serious?'" Miller responded.
Remember all the way back to a year ago, when Funny People hadn't yet come out, but Aziz Ansari already was generating buzz for his caricature of a stand-up comedian called Raaaaaaaandy ("that's Randy with eight A's")? Fast-forward back to now, and Ansari -- who just hosted the MTV Movie Awards and has several movie deals in the works in addition to his supporting role on NBC's Parks and Recreation -- is a bonafide celebrity, getting name-dropped by people who he was name-dropping only a year ago.
Ansari packed the Vic Theatre in Chicago for four shows this week, two on Wednesday, two on Thursday. Watching the crowd go gaga for Ansari, and even more so for Raaaaaaaandy, it has become increasingly clear that his hopping, singing overconfident character isn't all that different from the Ansari who earlier in his act, ends a series of tags about a racist locksmith with a jingle, or comes up with new song-raps for R. Kelly as an online dictionary resource. It's just that now, Ansari closes his 45-minute set, then after briefly leaving the stage, returns to welcome Raaaaaaaandy as his "special guest" to wild applause and audience suggestions for his blowjob jokes.
That's not to say Ansari doesn't still want to be known as a more reserved, less confident type. When he told the Vic audience on Wednesday, "I'm single now," and multiple women shrieked in delight, Ansari replied: "Aw, you don't mean that." Except they do. Aziz Ansari is a celebrity now.
It's not that unusual for your local TV news to be a little more carefree in the morning hours and take plenty of minutes away from delivering the news to entertain and delight you. But when Ellen DeGeneres comes to your town, she gets upgraded to your main evening news. Such was the case last night as Ellen already is in Chicago working on and promoting her "Somewhat Special Special" on Wednesday -- her second annual televised variety show from Just For Laughs Chicago. The folks at NBC 5 in Chicago pretty much let Ellen be Ellen and said the news can come later. Here's the footage:
Ellen's Somewhat Special Special will include The Catwalk Acrobats, Dominic Lacasse, James Galea, Matrix Ping Pong and DJ Nick Cannon. It tapes Wednesday at The Chicago Theatre and airs June 27 on TBS.
Just For Laughs Chicago announced late yesterday that Jerry Seinfeld, Russell Peters, Sommore and JB Smoove had joined the lineup for Cedric The Entertainer's upcoming TBS special, Cedric The Entertainer's Urban Circus, which tapes June 18 at the Chicago Theatre and airs June 23 on TBS.
Wait. Seinfeld? Jerry Seinfeld?! That sounds a bit different from Cedric's last televised special, which he did with Shaquille O'Neal. Can you say upgrade? Cedric, who talked to me yesterday about his special and more, laughed it off.
"I don't know man. I don't know if I'd put them in the same category," Cedric said. "Seinfeld will at least talk, that's one thing we can look forward to is him doing words."
Cedric said his special will feature a combination of his stand-up, that of the other performers and more. "I'm doing this narrative of my life with how life is a circus, and how life is all the funny things you see in your life," he said. "I've got a church choir that's going to join me, acrobatics who do stuff on mattresses. I call it ghetto gymnastics." He also does "a step, stomp interlude" that's a tribute to his days in the fraternity Kappa Alpha Psi. And there also will be pre-taped appearances from Steve Harvey and D.L. Hughley, who performed alongside Cedric in the 2000 documentary film, The Original Kings of Comedy.
Can you believe it has been 10 years? How is comedy different now? "We definitely recognize the influence it had on stand-up and live shows. The influence that it added to our careers in all sorts of different ways. We've been able to manipulate it and use it for our growth. After the passing of Bernie (Mac), we didn't know how to approach it (in terms of a reunion)...there's been some talks about how to kick it back off."
What about comedy now for everyone else in the game? "It seemed like 10 years ago, a Bernie Mac, all he had to say was people were scared to give him a TV show, and they gave him one. Nowadays the business is generally slow all around, but definitely for black men and women, and Latinos to break out. There's less of that. Opportunities to be seen in a way to stand out. It'll take people a lot longer to see that new generation of star...that comedian who has a unique voice."
That's strange to think that, since you'd think with YouTube and all of the technology we have, there'd be so many more opportunities for comedians to break out. Or do you think that just makes it tougher for any one person to stand out? "We get information so fast. This whole interview may be on Twitter in 20 minutes. You try to sit back and savor. There's so much information, and people ReTwitter somebody's joke, and then you may think it's their joke. Write your stuff...plagiarism may not even matter anymore...they say it don't matter where I got it from." Of course, this just makes the road a little longer and tougher. "If you haven't been able to make a name for yourself, find an opportunity to get on television and get known, it will take a lot longer to build a career for yourself."
As I predicted the moment TBS signed up Conan O'Brien for late-night, the cable network has announced that it'll be taping a TBS special with Team Coco for Just For Laughs Chicago!
With a catch. It's not going to be an exact replica of the Team Coco live show currently touring North America (The Legally Prohibited from Being Funny on Television Tour). Rather, it's thus-far including everything but Conan himself, with sidekick Andy Richter, several of Conan's writers and his tour's opening act Reggie Watts performing in something with a working title of "Team Coco presents Conan's Writers Live." It'll fit into the schedule on Thursday, June 17, at the Bank of America Theater -- and air on TBS on Sunday, June 27. (Tickets go on sale May 28)
JFL Chicago also announced two other additions to its festival schedule, which runs June 15-19:
Uncle's Brother, a trio featuring Tim Meadows, Joe Canale and Brad Morris, will perform their blend of stand-up, improv and sketch at the Annoyance Theatre at 10 p.m. Friday, June 18.
Drinking Buddies will bring T.J. Miller together with Kyle Kinane, Mike Bridenstine and James Fritz for what's described as "loose, off-the-cuff comedy" at 9 p.m. Wednesday, June 16, at the Lincoln Lodge. A screening of Miller's short film, Successful Alcoholics, will follow.
At last year's inaugural Just For Laughs Chicago festival, I sat down with Robert Smigel and asked him about the legacy of his "Da Bears" SNL Super Fans sketch.
This year, JFL Chicago is bringing Smigel back for a "Da Bears" charity tribute Super Fans extravaganza, featuring Smigel, former Bears coach Mike Ditka, George Wendt, Joe Mantegna, Bob Odenkirk and the Sun-Times' Richard Roeper. They'll be performing a live reading of Da Bears Movie Dat Wasn't, a never-produced screenplay, as well as show Super Fan sketches, welcome surprise guests, and do a Q&A with Ditka. It's all happening June 19 to benefit Have Dreams: Helping Autistic Voices Emerge and the Gridiron Greats Assistance Fund.
Wow. Here's part of my chat with Smigel to refresh your memories.
But that's not all. Just For Laughs Chicago also unveiled a big ol' slate of additional shows for next month's festival, as well as adding shows for Aziz Ansari, putting John Mulaney and Kyle Kinane on the "ALT" show that already boasted Patton Oswalt, Maria Bamford and Chris Hardwick, and put Jim Belushi along with the planned Second City class of 1979 reunion show.
Allow me to cut-and-paste-and-edit the new shows for your enjoyment...I'll see you there?
The second annual Just For Laughs Chicago comedy festival has joined up with Second City alums and more as the schedule comes into focus.
Now add to that: Patton Oswalt leading a mini version of "Comedians of Comedy" with Maria Bamford and Chris Hardwick, a sneak peek screening of the upcoming Adult Swim series Childrens Hospital with Rob Corddry, a live episode of the Adam Carolla Podcast, JB Smoove in character as "Leon Black," and last but certainly not least, The Second City Alumni Reunion Show featuring the Class of '79 -- George Wendt, Tim Kazurinsky, Nancy McCabe Kelly, Bruce Jarchow, Danny Breen and more. The festival also has added a second night for Ansari at The Vic, and moved "The Not Inappropriate Show" to the Mayne Stage.
Here is more specific info on each of the newly announced shows:Alt Comedy – Saturday, June 19, at 7 and 9:30 p.m. at The Vic. Featuring Patton Oswalt, Maria Bamford, Chris Hardwick and more.
Rob Corddry’s Childrens Hospital – Thursday, June 17, at 9:30 p.m. at Park West. Rob Corddry, Jonathan Stern, David Wain, Erinn Hayes and others appear for a live presentation of the upcoming Adult Swim series Childrens Hospital. The show will feature a preview screening, a Q&A session and more.
The Adam Carolla Podcast – Thursday, June 17, at 7 p.m. and Friday, June 18, at 7 p.m. at Park West. A special live edition with surprise guests.
An Evening with Leon Black and Friends – Friday, June 18, at Midnight at Park West. JB Smoove performs in character as Curb Your Enthusiasm's Leon Black, the outspoken, self-righteous, “prettay, prettay, prettay” live-in guest at the Larry David household. Leon will host three nights of laughs with special guests. And if that weren’t incentive enough, he’ll also brings the ruckus to the ladies.
The Second City Alumni Reunion Show – Class of ’79 – Thursday, June 17 at 8 p.m. at Second City. For one night only, the cast of 1979 will reunite in a benefit for The Second City Alumni Fund as they recreate some of their classic scenes from The Second City archives. The cast will feature George Wendt, Tim Kazurinsky, Nancy McCabe Kelly, Bruce Jarchow, Danny Breen and more.
Big day for Conan O'Brien, his workers and his fans on Team Coco. By now we all know that TBS outfoxed FOX and snagged Conan to what's widely being reported as a five-year deal to air Monday-Thursday at 11 p.m. (with Conan owning the show), broadcast from Los Angeles and likely very close by the Warner Bros. studios in Burbank where George Lopez tapes Lopez Tonight (which will move to midnights).
And by all accounts, the deal happened because Lopez and TBS both were OK with Conan bumping Lopez to midnight -- the very thing Conan was not cool with Leno and NBC doing to him. The TBS party line, and the early word from Conan's team to New York Times late-night TV chronicler Bill Carter echoed that sentiment, saying that Lopez himself called Conan to sell him on the idea.
You can read their quotes on the page TBS set up this afternoon for Conan, along with this short video incorporating the "I'm With Coco" image from Mike Mitchell to read "Coco Is With TBS."
But, wait. Didn't I bury the lede that my headline suggests? Right right. Conan O'Brien also begins his live stage tour of the United States and Canada tonight in Eugene, Ore. Team Coco's "Legally Prohibited From Being Funny on Television Tour" ends in Atlanta (home of TBS) on June 14. If you like that coincidence, how about this even bigger one...
The TBS Just For Laughs Chicago festival begins the very next day, running June 15-19. Last year, they presented George Lopez shows to help promote his upcoming late-night show. On March 23, when they announced the initial slate of headliners, they included TV specials for Ellen DeGeneres, Cedric the Entertainer, and "a third TV special to be announced later." Sources were coy when I asked them if Conan would be joining the fun in Chicago. I'm clearing my calendar already. And yes, I know he's taking the tour to Chicago already on May 19-20, but if you were hoping for a third Chicago date in June, keep hope alive.
As for the news they were comfortable announcing today...