Day: March 6, 2009

Inside the funny “Mystery Team” movie

Derrick comedy has a laugh-out-loud hilarious, dark comedy movie on their hands, and if all things go well, soon enough, there will be a distribution deal for Mystery Team. How do I know this? I managed to get in on one of the intimate free screenings in New York City earlier this week, and talked to four-fifths of the team behind Mystery Team afterward (Dan Eckman, Meggie McFadden, DC Pierson and Dominic Dierkes — Donald Glover was over in Long Island City being executive story editor on 30 Rock). Roll the clip! As mentioned in the clip, Mystery Team debuted in January at the Sundance Film Festival to mostly positive reviews and buzz. Director/co-writer/editor Eckman said he managed to cut more than six minutes from the version Sundance audiences saw, getting the running time down to a leaner 98 minutes. "Watching it with an audience six times at Sundance really opened the whole thing up," Eckman told me. If you haven't heard the buzz yet, let me fill you in. Donald Glover, DC Pierson and Dominic Dierkes play three high-schoolers who are still living off of their childhood "fame" as boy detectives who solved neighborhood mysteries a la Encyclopedia Brown. Glover's Jason is as animated as a Looney Tunes character with a propensity for disguises that rely on fake mustaches. Pierson's Duncan has memorized trivial trivia and thinks that...

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D.L. Hughley breaks his CNN show

When D.L. Hughley began his weekly weekend hour on CNN last fall, he joked about moving to New York City and the cold weather. Hughley, who turns 45 today (happy birthday!), didn't quite make it through his first winter, announcing yesterday (just a day before spring weather has arrived, coincidentally) that he was putting an end to D.L. Hughley Breaks the News and moving to Los Angeles. Hughley tried to convince CNN to move the show with him, but the network didn't have the budget for it. Some on the Internets have claimed that critics savaged the program, when the truth is, most TV critics didn't bother to pay attention to the experiment of giving an hour of CNN's news programming to a stand-up comedian. Actually, if you Google D.L. Hughley CNN review, my review comes up first. There were some missteps in the early weeks, mostly when they tried to force the comedy and especially anytime an actual CNN anchor or reporter attempted humor. But the idea of injecting Hughley into the news gave a fresh perspective on a lot of timely topics. Last weekend, Hughley had a prolonged discussion with Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele and Chuck D about the idea of bringing a "hip-hop" sensibility to the GOP. It was interesting stuff, and one comment in particular got right-wingers riled up…perhaps they don't like being...

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See “The Hangover” trailer, plus a free screening!

So many wild and wonderful things happened at the 92YTribeca show where I quoted Zach Galifianakis recently. After that show, actor Bradley Cooper showed up backstage to hang with Galifianakis and I thought, hmmm, that's interesting. Then I learned that Cooper and Galifianakis are starring together (along with Ed Helms) in an upcoming summer movie, The Hangover. My friends at Videogum watched the trailer today and said, "It's like Very Bad Things meets Three Men And A Baby meets Dude, Where's My Car meets funny." Agreed. If you live near Burbank, Calif., you also have a chance to watch the whole movie at a free screening on March 12. The comedy fans at A Special Thing have the details. Todd Phillips directed the movie, which officially debuts June...

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Comedy Central taps Daniel Tosh for summer series

Daniel Tosh received word Thursday that Comedy Central had made a 10-episode order for his half-hour comedy series that will give Tosh a weekly opportunity to rant and rave about the Internet and things he see online. It's called Tosh.0 and will debut in June. "Finally, a television show that steals from the Internet, as opposed to the other way around," Tosh said, according to Variety. The show promises biting commentary. Tosh always has been a man ready to speak his mind. Here's an example from 2008 (language...

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Super Dave gets summer series on Spike

How many character-based comedy acts have lasted 30 years? Bob Einstein, older brother of Albert Brooks, got an early break as a writer for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, but on his own, he has made a lasting contribution to multiple generations of comedy fans with his creation of daredevil Super Dave Osborne. I first saw Super Dave on the early 1980s Showtime comedy series, Bizarre. Super Dave would later get his own Showtime spin-off and a feature film. Over the years, he'd show up as a guest on the late-night TV shows and try out stunts, most recently appearing on Jimmy Kimmel Live. And now, Spike TV has granted him the chance to let four death-defying stunts go horribly awry this summer. It'll air over four weeks. (Spike's press release) Here are some Super Dave highlights from years gone by. Watch as he attempts to hit Doc Gooden's 100 mph fastball…blindfolded. And see what happened when he tried to set up a boxing match for Evander...

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