[11/16/04 - 12:00 AM]
Comedy Central Reaches for the Stars with New Talent and Development Deals

[via press release from Comedy Central]

COMEDY CENTRAL Reaches For The Stars With New Talent And Development Deals


Talent-Driven Projects From Norm Macdonald, Jamie Kennedy, Dave Attell, Michael Ian Black,

Sommore And Reveille Entertainment, Pariah Television, Greg Giraldo, Brian Unger,

Patton Oswalt And Brian Posehn, And Skyler Stone Are In Development For 2005


NEW YORK, November 16, 2004 -- With a beefed-up development team and an increased budget, COMEDY CENTRAL is poised to build off its highest-rated and most-watched year* in the network's history. The all-comedy network has closed talent deals with Norm Macdonald and Jamie Kennedy, completed production on six new pilots, including two entertainment show parodies, and greenlit a concert film with network star Dave Attell, it was announced today by Lauren Corrao, senior vice president, original programming and head of development, COMEDY CENTRAL.

Not satisfied to rest on the laughter turned out in the record 2004 (with ratings up +22% and total viewership up +35%, there have been a lot of laughs in prime time this year*), COMEDY CENTRAL plans to hit the ground running in 2005. Along with the talent deals reached with Macdonald and Kennedy, and the Attell concert film, new projects in development include: "Stella," a scripted series from Michael Ian Black, Michael Showalter and David Wain (original members of the sketch-comedy group "The State"); "Con" from Skyler Stone and Rick DeOliveira; "Take It To The Bitch House" starring Sommore (one of the original "Queens of Comedy") from Reveille Entertainment; and "Happy Game Fun Bomb," a video game project with Patton Oswalt and Brian Posehn, from Rob Cohen.

Also in development are two entertainment show parodies that are set to skewer the self-importance of Hollywood (and the plethora of celeb-obsessed shows that cover Tinseltown) and are being eyed as a potential companion to "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart." They include "Gone Hollywood," hosted by Greg Giraldo from Hugh Fink and Pariah Television and "The Hollywood Show," hosted by former "Daily Show" correspondent Brian Unger who also executive produced, along with Heidi Clements. All titles listed are working titles.

"In comedy, timing is everything and, after coming off such a great year, now is the time for us to invest in more original programming" said Corrao. "We're thrilled to be able to attract the diverse A-list talent and producers that these pilots represent."

Descriptions of what's in the works are as follows:

TALENT DEALS Norm Macdonald -- premise: Macdonald brings his unique brand of comedy to what promises to be a "completely different" sketch show experience. Macdonald will star and serve as executive producer.

Jamie Kennedy -- premise: Kennedy tests people's stereotypes and social expectations, often going undercover to prove his point in this half-hour show. Kennedy and Josh Etting will executive produce.

MOVIE DEAL "Untitled Dave Attell Movie" -- In the spirit of "Blue Collar Comedy Tour" and "The Original Kings of Comedy," this COMEDY CENTRAL Films original will feature Attell and his friends on tour.

PILOTS "Gone Hollywood" -- Hosted by Greg Giraldo ("Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn"), "Gone Hollywood" will skewer Hollywood itself by using actual footage, clips and on-location field pieces, along with celebrity guests. Hugh Fink, Gavin Polone and Vivian Cannon (Pariah Television) are executive producers, and Giraldo is a co-executive producer.

"The Hollywood Show" -- Brian Unger ("The Daily Show," NPR's "Day to Day"), hosts and serves as executive producer of a show that turns your friendly neighborhood nightly entertainment magazine show inside out. "The Hollywood Show" is a topical parody of show business, pop culture and entertainment stories featuring celebrity interviews, man-on-the-street reporting and actual movie, TV and paparazzi footage. Heidi Clements also serves as executive producer.

"Stella" -- Michael Ian Black, Michael Showalter and David Wain write and star in this live-action, scripted adaptation of their popular stage show. Black, Showalter and Wain are also executive producers.

"Take It To The Bitch House" -- Comedienne Sommore plays the role of judge and jury "out in the streets" in a series of disputes focusing on relatable, real-life problems that are too petty, even for small claims court. "Take It To The Bitch House" will be executive produced by Reveille Entertainment, Ben Silverman, Steven Greener and Patrick Byrnes and co-executive produced and directed by Rusty Cundieff.

"Con" -- Skyler Stone uses his smarts and creativity to con his way through life doing and getting whatever he wants. Rick DeOliveira ("Making The Band," "Real World," "Road Rules") and Stone serve as executive producers; Chris Bender, Chris Cox, Matt Sloan and JC Spink serve as co-executive producers.

"Happy Game Fun Bomb" -- hosted by Patton Oswalt and Brian Posehn, this series features a group of comedian gamers who play video games against a satellite group of real gamers from cities around the country. The show also covers the latest and greatest from the gamer/nerd/geek lifestyle. The video game project will be executive produced by Rob Cohen ("Jamie Kennedy Experiment," "Just Shoot Me").

COMEDY CENTRAL, the only all-comedy network, currently is seen in more than 86 million homes nationwide. COMEDY CENTRAL is owned by Comedy Partners, a wholly-owned division of MTV Networks. COMEDY CENTRAL is a registered trademark of Comedy Partners. COMEDY CENTRAL's Internet address is http://www.comedycentral.com.

  [november 2004]  


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