Day: November 18, 2019

Episode #281: Erik Rivera

Erik Rivera got heavily involved in comedy in the wake of 9/11 while studying at Pace University just blocks away from the World Trade Center. Rivera’s TV credits include performing on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Last Comic Standing, his own hour special, I’m No Expert, as well as a season of reality TV with his wife on Oxygen, Living With Funny. In November 2019, Rivera stars in his own HBO half-hour special, Super White. He worked with Eva Longoria years ago trying to develop his life into a half-hour sitcom, and as he has Longoria still in...

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Will Smith spent the week in Las Vegas with a bunch of stand-up comedians filming and interviewing them

Why were a bunch of stand-up comedians hanging around with each other in Las Vegas last week, hitting golf balls at a driving range, cruising down the Vegas atop a double-decker tour bus, and oh yeah, posting selfies with Will Smith? Probably most definitely these jokers were participating in This Joka. Announced last month by Topgolf Entertainment, This Joka is a forthcoming comedy series starring the aforementioned movie star and hip-hop artist Will Smith. The announcement pitched it as a docuseries in which Smith (who tried his own hand at stand-up earlier this year for his Facebook Watch series)...

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Decade after calling out late-night and Dave Letterman, Nell Scovell receives reconciliation, and late-night hires more women writers

In 2009, TV writer Nell Scovell called out late-night TV for continuing to be a boys club, and called out her former employer, David Letterman, in particular. Well, Nell and Dave recently met up for the first time in a lot longer than 10 years, and it went, well, well. As Scovell recounted for Vanity Fair: Dave’s CBS show went off the air in 2015 with one female writer,** **the same number his NBC show had when it debuted in 1982. Merrill Markoe was Late Night’s first head writer, inventing classic segments like Stupid Pet Tricks and making perhaps the first dog video...

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Mo’Nique sues Netflix for alleged pay discrimination

Almost two years ago, back in January 2018, Mo’Nique spilled tea about what she claimed was some serious discrimination on the part of streaming giant Netflix. She said they offered her $500,000 for a proposed stand-up comedy special. At the same time, Netflix had made highly-publicized deals for $20 million or more per special from Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock and Jerry Seinfeld, and raised their bid for Amy Schumer to $13 million after Schumer realized how much Netflix was paying the fellas. Mo’Nique, who won the Academy Award in 2010 for Best Supporting Actress in Precious, and a Grammy...

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CBS adapting a James Corden sports game show for the U.S. with Keegan-Michael Key as host: Game On!

Before James Corden became a late-night staple in America, he was hosting a sports/comedy game show in the U.K. called A League of Their Own., which is in its 14th season across the pond. Now CBS is adapting the format for the U.S., and has tapped Keegan-Michael Key to host Game On! The show pits two teams of three against one another in a series of physical challenges and sports trivia questions. The team captains will be Venus Williams and Rob Gronkowski, with comedians Bobby Lee and Ian Karmel as permanent panelists. The remaining slots will be filled on...

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