Day: February 2, 2011

Voices on the vices of the late Greg Giraldo (and a reminder: buy tickets for his all-star benefit show!)

Larry Getlen has written an insightful article on the brilliant comedy, and the tragic addictions, of the late Greg Giraldo. Getlen interviewed comedian Jesse Joyce — who toured with Giraldo and wrote for his many popular Roasts — as well as Jim Norton for the piece. But you won't find it in the New York Post, where Getlen is a regular freelancer. This is for Splitsider. Here are two quotes from Joyce, one about his comedic ability to use intelligence and wit on any audience: ‚ÄúHe was so confident on stage, such a master of words and so naturally funny, that he could take anything he wanted to talk about and make it funny even if you disagreed with his politics on it. At the end of the bit, it was flawless logic,‚Äù says Joyce. ‚ÄúYou could disagree with the concept of gay marriage, but he would [talk about this] in Texas, or in the South. We‚Äôd work together in Georgia, and he would start the bit with some version of, ‚Äòif you think gay people choose to be gay, you‚Äôre an asshole.‚Äô He would confront people aggressively to say, what you believe is wrong. But by the end of the bit, not only would he get an applause break, but everybody would be like, ‚ÄòHuh. I see your point.‚Äù He could take anything he believed in, and make...

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Michael McIntyre: From Montreal “New Face” in 2007 to new Simon Cowell on 2011’s Britain’s Got Talent?

The new season of Britain's Got Talent has begun the initial audition phase across the pond, and the early hullaballoo is over the harsh criticisms coming from one of its new judges, stand-up comedian Michael McIntyre. For those of us in North America who don't know the name Michael McIntyre, the 34-year-old hasn't made much of a dent here, his first try coming in the summer of 2007 when McIntyre was presented to the industry as one of the "New Faces" in Montreal's Just For Laughs festival. His energetic style caught on in the U.K., however, where he quickly rose to the ranks of selling out arenas — his second DVD, Hello Wembley, sold more than 1.4 million copies. He won the British Comedy Award for Best Live Stand-Up Comedy Performer in 2009, and followed that in 2010 with the Best Male TV Comic, hosting BBC1's Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow. And now this year, he was named to become one of the new judges for Britain's Got Talent, sitting alongside longtime BGT judge Amanda Holden and America's Got Talent export David Hasselhoff. In past seasons, Holden has sat between Simon Cowell and Piers Morgan. Cowell's working on his U.S. version of The X Factor, while Morgan is busy trying to attract viewers to his 9 p.m. CNN hour that replaced Larry King. Sources have told the British press that...

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Groundhog Day, Ned Ryerson, the TV ad Microsoft should air today, and stories from Stephen Tobolowsky

It's Feb. 2, which means it's Groundhog Day. Which means it's time to remember the instant classic comedy 1993 film, Groundhog Day, starring Bill Murray. This scene, in particular, now in 2011 becomes a perfect TV ad for Microsoft's search engine: Bing! Why hadn't they thought of this before? Roll the clip.   But let us not forget the man behind Ned Ryerson: Stephen Tobolowsky. Tobolowsky, 59, already had a decade of character actor work under his belt by the time he appeared in Groundhog Day, including Thelma & Louise, Basic Instinct, Single White Female and the pivotal role of Dr. Werner Brandes in Sneakers. More recently, he has held down TV parts in Heroes, Glee and the current season of Californication. You can hear Tobolowsky talk about his lengthy career with plenty of behind-the-scenes anecdotes in his podcast with /film called The Tobolowsky Files. Of course, the most relevant podcast episode is Ep. 29, "The Classic," in which Tobolowsky talks about being Ned Ryerson and working with Bill Murray, Harold Ramis and others on Groundhog Day. Listen as he talks about scenes in the original script, as well as scenes that got filmed but then cut, that made the movie truly great. Listen to Stephen Tobolowsky talk about Groundhog Day. And if you'd like to see all of the "Ned Ryerson" scenes in one clip, roll it!...

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Take a tour of Four Loko Vineyards with Don Johnson

In 2010, we saw a wave of new beverages that combined high-octane alcohol with caffeine and other energy ingredients and put them together in colorful cans. Four Loko dominated the trend, both with the kids (who shouldn't be drinking alcohol) and with the media (who love a scandal that scares parents). By 2011, Four Loko (and others?) had vowed to take the drinks off of store shelves and replace them with colorful cans without the caffeine and taurine. Still 12 percent booze, though! All better now? Sorry to throw so much news upfront there. You just wanted to see Don Johnson lead a tour of the Four Loko "Vineyards." Here you go!   Written and directed by Owen Burke for Funny or...

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See Nick Offerman without his “Ron Swanson” mustache teach Conan some Manly Man tips for living

Nick Offerman, who should have won at least one Emmy already by now for his scene-stealing role as Ron Swanson in NBC's Parks and Recreation, showed up last night on Conan without his TV mustache! Or as Offerman said, in "the ultimate disguise." Roll the clip.   Some other things we learned about how to be a Manly Man, courtesy of Offerman: If you're going to pose naked for a magazine with your wife, don't starve yourself beforehand and deny yourself the joys of fine European sausages. Why? "You gotta live, you know? We only go around once on this big blue marble." "If you strap on a tool bag, it's a proven rule that a visceral reaction goes off in women when they see a guy in a tool bag." "When I see people wearing flip-flop sandals in public, it sickens me…What if Red Dawn happens and some Communists land in parachutes, and we have to suddenly run or fight them, and you're wearing flip-flip sandals?!" "That's beachwear." If you get a flat tire, and decide to call AAA instead of fixing it yourself? "I say that's your choice, but that's a weak choice…Change your own God-damned tire!" "If you put this on pause right now and go out to your vehicle, everything is in your car that you need to change your tire. Do it safely. Just...

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February 2011
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