Day: January 21, 2010

Would you believe: Artie Lange predicted Conan O’Brien’s future on 2008 “Late Night” appearance!

Strange but true in so many ways, when Artie Lange appeared on Late Night with Conan O'Brien in 2008 to promote his book, Lange told Conan that he was making a big mistake in agreeing to move to Los Angeles and taking over the Tonight Show, suggested he let the "bobblehead" Jay Leno continue to host it instead, and take NBC's $40 million penalty fee. Conan denied it then. "No. I don't think so," O'Brien told Lange. "Forty million dollars not to work? Sweet. I've got to look into that." Roll the...

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Jordan Brady takes his documentary, “I Am Comic,” to Slamdance: “Bow-Chicka-Bow-Wow!”

Perhaps you have seen the clip circulating on the Internet this past week of Louis CK explaining how he took down a heckler? The comedian was shot talking on the streets of New York City as part of a new documentary by Jordan Brady on stand-up comedy, "I Am Comic," which makes its debut screening this Jan. 27-28 at the Slamdance Film Festival, the alternative to Sundance in nearby Salt Lake City. "I Am Comic" explores the world of stand-up comedy, interviewing many practitioners of the game and also including a narrative arc for Ritch Shydner as he mounted a comeback to the stage after 13 years away from the circuit. Here's a clip in which several comedians — including Sarah Silverman, Nick Kroll, Bobcat Goldthwait and Shydner — talk about the pros and cons of being a stand-up in the age of social media networks and Internet videos. Roll it! As Brady says on the Slamdance program:  "Mostly, I was a one-person crew. So I‚Äôd meet the comedian for the first time, then we‚Äôd go backstage where I‚Äôd wire them with a small microphone. There‚Äôs something very humbling about sticking your hand down someone‚Äôs pants that you‚Äôve just met. Especially while holding a small camcorder." I caught up with him on the Internet to ask him a follow-up or two, asking him how long it took to put...

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NBC tries to put the best spin on Leno’s return to “The Tonight Show”

You know that old saying, if it ain't broke, don't fix it? Of course you do. That's why it's an old saying. And if NBC had thought of that in 2004, it wouldn't have found itself doomed to repeat history, which is another unfortunate saying that the network forgot about. Two-fer! Actually Toofer is a 30 Rock character, also on NBC. Anyhow. Where was I? After confirming that it had wrapped up negotiations to end Conan O'Brien's seven-month stint on The Tonight Show — for a reported $45 million including fees to cover severance for O'Brien's staff and his executive producer — NBC put out a press release celebrating the return of Jay Leno to his old time-slot. If that's what getting fired means, sign me up! Conan's last show for NBC is tomorrow, Jan. 22, and he is free to return to TV full-time somewhere else as of Sept. 1, 2010. Leno, meanwhile, returns to his old slot on March 1, following the Winter Olympics coverage, which will pre-empt most everything in primetime and late-night on the NBC networks. The words in NBC's press release sure sounds like they're putting the best possible spin on cancelling Leno's primetime show — which affiliates and critics hated — and giving him back the show they had taken away from him. Can we just pretend the past didn't happen? That's what...

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