Comedy Bits: Sebastian Maniscalco, Woody Allen, Nick Stoller, Paul Feig, Stephen Merchant, and More

This in comedy news we covered Joe List and Byron Bowers doing late night sets, a new congressional push to recognize comedy, trailers from Kevin Hart and Ken Jeong, Sarah Silverman speaking out for women seeking medical treatment, comedians joining the NBA All Stars game, Eminem reacting to Chris D’Elia’s impression of him, Chelsea Handler’s new tour, Garry Shandling’s endowment to medical research, Kevin Hart getting denied, Skankfest, and Comedians reacting to Super Bowl 53.

In other comedy news, Nick Stoller, Paul Feig, Sebastian Maniscalco, Stephen Merchant, Woody Allen and more all made the media this week with some short stories.

Nick Stoller is planning to direct a gay romcom starring Billy Eichner with Judd Apatow as producer. The film is about two men with commitment issues taking the plunge. Eichner tweeted that he is “Excited, terrified, completely in shock and PROUD as hell to announce this movie. We’re making a big, new romantic comedy for Universal!!!! AHHHHHHH!”. Eichner is not only the star, he’s the author of the screenplay. Source: Deadline.

Paul Feig is set to direct a holiday rom-com from Emma Thompson. The movie will star Emilia Clarke and Henry Golding.

Looks like Sebastian Maniscalco gave comedy fans a little gift. Everyone knows that Martin Scorsese’s highly anticipated movie The Irishman is being released this year, but when? Netflix has left us all hanging about a release date. But on Joe Rogan’s podcast, the Joe Rogan Experience, Maniscalco let it slip that the Netflix movie will be out in October. The Irishman is not a comedy but comedy fans are looking forward to the film which stars Maniscalco, Ray Romano, and Jim Norton playing a young Don Rickles. Gotham Comedy Club will play a major role in the film as well- filling in as The Copacabana. Sebastian also talked about why you won’t be seeing him in any comedy movies anytime soon. “I’m a serious guy,’ Maniscalco said. “I’m not a goofball.” For that reason he said he only wants to do dramatic roles on films. He says he gets his fix of comedy from his stand up, and likes the challenge of playing it serious on camera. He plays a gangster in Scorsese’s The Irishman, a movie about Hoffan. He plays Crazy Joe Gallo and got to work with Pacino, De Niro and Pesci and of course, Scorsese. Source: YouTube

‘The Simpsons’ has been renewed For Seasons 31 and 32 which will bring the ongoing series episode total to 713.

Woody Allen is suing Amazon Studios for terminating a movie deal with the iconic filmmaker.  He had deals for a series of movies with the studio which were dropped after Amazon allegedly got nervous over the #metoo movement and new articles bringing old allegations about Allen back into the news.  According to documents filed in court, Amazon guaranteed Allen’s company some big sums worth somewhere around $70 million. Allen alleges that there is nothing that would give Amazon the right to reneg on these deals, and that any allegations put forth in the now infamous Ronan Farrow article were already known to Amazon when they signed the deals. He is suing for those fees owed.  Source: THR.

Bill Cosby is back in the news.  A source for the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections said that Cosby was moved on January 28 into general population. He is being kept in a single cell, in a general population unit, and is no longer being held separated from the prison’s other inmates. Source: CNN.

Crashing has  a big episode debuting this week, where the #metoo movement and its effect on the world of stand up comedy will be front and center. Is there room in comedy for an old school white guy who still sees the world as a place to try to score?  Tune in Sunday to HBO for an episode guaranteed to spark conversation. The episode is titled MC, Middle, Headliner.

Louis C.K. performed to sold out crowds at Side Splitters in Tampa generating standing ovations as he took the stage and as he closed. Although phones were banned we heard from some people in attendance that Parkland was not mentioned, C.K. spent about two minutes talking about his misconduct allegations, and that aside from the standing O’s it seemed like just a regular night seeing a very famous comedian do an hour.

The Grammy Awards are this Sunday and the comedy Grammy is rightly under attack with several stories calling out the award as insincere. Uproxx questioned why the qualifications for a Grammy are tied to a Vinyl release and why Grammy doesn’t care whether an album is available to stream. And the Washington Post is asking questions about why in a year where women were clearly among the top performances in comedy, are there no women nominated for the award? The same question was asked by Sarah Silverman in an audio documentary dedicated to the history of the comedy documentary hosted by Dan Pasternak for SiriusXM.  Well Recording Academy?

Snoop Dog hosted a screening of the upcoming film Fighting With Family, written and directed with former Ricky Gervais collaborator Stephen Merchant this week. The comedy is based on the true story of WWE star Paige, who earns a spot in the WWE training program, and must leave her tight-knit wrestling family to face the cut-throat world of professional wrestling alone. Reviews for the bio-comedy are strong. Fighting With Family opens on February 14th in limited theaters and wide on February 22nd.

More from Stephen Merchant. The comedy star, director, writer and producer is also going to be playing a very unfunny role. The BBC announced Merchant will star as serial killer and serial rapist Stephen Port in a new dramatic series.  Source:


Read more comedy news.