April 14, 2013 |
Comedian Kurt Braunohler has promised, within a matter of minutes, to rearrange the downtown Los Angeles sky. It's 2:23 p.m. and half a dozen people on a recent Saturday crane their necks and squint into the sun as they wait outside a Hill Street high-rise to be let up to the roof. "Don't bother, man, it's at capacity in there," says a petite woman, her face obscured by enormous Jackie O sunglasses and a painter's cap. herapist, has a weekly average of about 1.2 million viewers.
April 13, 2013 |
The large child known as Jonathan Winters died Friday at age 87. Accompanying him into the now-noisier hereafter were the multitudes he contained, a cast of men, women, children of every race and nationality, rich and poor, city and country. Some were characters with names to whom the comedian would return - Maude Frickert, the go-go granny - but more of them existed for a minute or less, brought into focus, played with and then sent on their way, as another appeared in their place.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 13, 2013 |
Comic great Jonathan Winters was struggling to make a name for himself in the early 1950s when a man at the nightclub where he was performing offered some life-changing advice. Winters had a talent for channeling the voices of celebrities like Gary Cooper and Boris Karloff but, the man observed, "All you're doing is shining their shoes. You'd best think up your own characters. " That, Winters told TV Guide many years later, was "the best hunk of criticism I ever got. " With his rubbery, moon-shaped face and pitch-perfect ear for speech patterns, Winters began to unleash a cavalcade of charmingly twisted characters, including a redneck ballplayer, a lisping child and a prissy schoolmarm.
March 19, 2013 |
ABC's new celebrity diving competition show "Splash" lines up the usual suspects for such a reality series -- actors, actresses, pro athletes, a beauty queen and even a Playboy model. And then there's Louie Anderson. The 59-year-old, 400-plus-pound comedian may not be the favorite to win, but his very presence may help determine how big a splash the show, which premieres Tuesday, will eventually make. "I didn't look at this as a show that's going to make fun of me even though some people probably do when they hear about it," Anderson said on a recent morning while practicing at the Rose Bowl Aquatics Center in Pasadena.
March 16, 2013 |
Inevitably, our tastes change as we grow older. Most of the pop songs that once served as anthems are now exercises in nostalgia, calling up happy ghosts rather than anything new and urgent. The dense romantic adventure novel that we swore by in our teens no longer holds our interest, but we can lose ourselves in the hitherto-impenetrable nuances and shadows of Henry James. The sentimental sweetness of Charles Chaplin remains affecting, but we are increasingly grateful for the stoniness of Buster Keaton and the petty but hilarious cruelties of W.C. Fields.
March 7, 2013 |
Kim Thompson, who since the late 1970s has been co-owner and co-publisher of Fantagraphics Books , has been diagnosed with lung cancer, it was announced Wednesday by the Seattle comics publisher. In a statement , the 56-year-old Thompson wrote: “This is still very early in the diagnosis, so I have no way of knowing the severity of my condition. I'm relatively young and [otherwise] in good health, and my hospital is top-flight, so I'm hopeful and confident that we will soon have the specifics narrowed down, set me up with a course of treatment, proceed, and lick this thing.” Fantagraphics has long been one of America's leading publishers of comics, showcasing both new work and old. Among its artists have been Jessica Abel (creator of the stunning “La Perdida” )
March 1, 2013 |
The lineup for the 35th annual Playboy Jazz Festival has been announced, and in addition to the weekend-long concert's signature mix of jazz, funk and R&B, the festival also revealed that comic and former late-night host George Lopez will take over for longtime host Bill Cosby this year. Cosby had served as master of ceremonies at the festival since 1979, and last year the comedy legend stepped down after becoming as much a part of the show's fabric as the Hollywood Bowl, parasols and picnic baskets.
February 28, 2013 |
Sarah Silverman, the Sklar Brothers, Dana Gould and Aziz Ansari are among the comedians who will be presenting their favorite movies at the 2nd Wayne Federman Film Festival Thursday through Saturday at the Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre. Federman, a comic actor who has appeared in such films as "Step Brothers" and "50 First Dates," came up with the idea for the festival last year. Silverman will present Woody Allen's 1989 comedy-drama "Crimes and Misdemeanors" Thursday evening, with the second bill featuring the Sklar Brothers and special guest Paul Dooley screening 1979's Oscar-winning "Breaking Away.
February 22, 2013 |
Ben Katchor must be the most unlikely comics artist ever to do a newspaper strip. His "Julius Knipl, Real Estate Photographer," which debuted in 1988, has appeared in papers such as the Forward and the old New York Press, where I first discovered it; to call it idiosyncratic would be to understate the point. Katchor is an urban visionary, building his stories brick by brick from the detritus of the metropolis: the derelict buildings, the unremembered districts, the flotsam and jetsam of the streets.
February 11, 2013 |
Five funny folks will entertain Feb. 22 and 23 in Las Vegas when these stars of cable's Comedy Central perform standup schtick during the “Comedy Central Vegas Weekend.” Comics Dave Attell and Jim Norton will bring their adults-only humor to the Hollywood Theatre at the MGM Grand both nights. Attell, who has a career spanning more than 20 years, stars in the Showtime series “Dave's Old Porn.” Norton, who is heard daily on SiriusXM's “Opie and Anthony” program, has also written two bestselling books.