Archives

Late Night

Jimmy Kimmel FTW! Best Viral Video of 2013

I’m aware that it’s only September, but I’m going to go ahead and call it. Best social media video of the year goes to Jimmy Kimmel.   His prank video Worst Twerk Fail EVER – Girl Catches Fire! scored over 12 million views in less than a fortnight.  And what’s better, his reveal video has nearly 15 million views on YouTube in less than one week.

Kimmel told The New York Times that he and his team came up with idea and shot it several months ago, well before Miley Cyrus’s infamous twerking performance at  the MTV Video Music Awards.   Kimmel said he divided his writers into three teams and asked them to “come up with a video idea that would make national news without using the muscle of the show, our Facebook page, Twitter or YouTube channel.”

Jimmy Kimmel YouTube

Improv Rules for the Conference Call – #INBOUND13

I studied improv under Amy Poehler at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater for two  years before she joined SNL.  While she’s the most brilliant improviser I’ve ever witnessed, she’s also one of the best teachers I’ve ever had, following only Ms. Reed, my sophomore Latin teacher in the stack rankings.   She has the gift of encouragement, and when you’re learning to perform The Harold — a long form improv format where a troupe perform a 30 minute show based on a single audience suggestion — encouragement is needed.

Some of the most terrifying moments in my life occurred in my early days of improv.  After learning a few simple principles, I began to feel comfortable stepping out on stage in front of a full audience with nothing but trust for my team and an empty mind, ready to discover the show.  I reluctantly began to understand what Del Close meant when he preached, “Follow the Fear.”

In the world of corporate communication and content marketing, it’s fear that keeps us from our best.  Fear to be different, fear of not getting promoted, fear of failure.  When I’ve applied the rules I learned in my corporate life, it’s lead to my biggest successes.   I’ll talk about three of these rules at #INBOUND13, Wednesday 12 noon, at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston.  Swing by if you’re in town.  I’ll post the video when it’s live.

 

 

The Daily Show’s John Oliver on Big Risk Taking

John Oliver  talked to NPR about his summer experience of trying to fill adult clown shoes on ‘The Daily Show.’  He’s been a huge success, but I’m guessing when he received the invite, at least at one point, he had cold feet.

DailyShow_JohnOliver

For me, when big opportunity has knocked, I have refused to answer plenty of times,  feeling that I was unqualified.  But over the last 10 years, I’ve come to realize that feeling unqualified is a rare and precious certain sign that I should run through the door with reckless abandon.  It started with my first TV commercial, “Filibuster.”  More on that story on a future blog post.  As Del Close used to preach to improvisers, “Follow the fear.”

Oliver outlined his process for preparing to take on the big role.  These steps in FastCompany Co.Create should be used for anyone taking on a big endeavor in business, sports, life or baking, especially “Be ready to fail.” and also “watch unedited tapes of Stephen Colbert interviews.’

Congrats, Mr. Oliver.

From LaughSpin:  “John Oliver’s 10 best moments on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.”

Bill Hader Retires from SNL, Joins T-Mobile

WSJ All Things Digital reports that comedy actor Bill Hader, who recently announced he’s retiring from Saturday Night Live after his ninth season, will be the new spokesman for the mobile telecom brand.  Hader got his big break when Megan Mullally saw him perform at an improv show and introduced him to Lorne Michaels.  For his SNL audition, Hader relied on the ol’ standby scene — James Mason ordering donuts with an expired gift certificate.

The funniest commercial in the series is “Rice,” which co-stars Brian Huskey, who was in my first improv class at Upright Citizen’s Brigade Theater.

I say bring back Catherine Zeta-Jones.

T-Mobile Mobile Makeover Commercial w/ Catherine Zeta-Jones.

 

The Colbert Bump, Off of Letterman

I was scheduled to play the presidential debate moderator in a sketch with David Letterman tonight.  But the show ran over the scheduled 46 minutes thanks to an extended funny segment by Stephen Colbert who was promoting his new book “America Again” (tune into his interview with Fresh Air’s Terry Gross on NPR) , so the sketch was bumped.  The good news is that I picked up a few fashion tips for the Cirque guys, and plan to update more of my after-six wardrobe with sequins.   I had a blast at the Ed Sullivan Theater getting to work with the team.  Everyone I’ve met there is incredibly friendly.   I rode the elevator with Paul Shaffer and had the chance to congratulate him on the 30 year anniversary of the hit he co-wrote, “It’s Raining Men,” which the show was celebrating that evening.

Letterman

Onion Sports Network: GOOMF

OSN_GOOMF

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zveFhcqj_SA

A-Rod Past Prime, Unable To Match Asinine Public Embarrassments Of Years Past

I played Senior Baseball Analyst Jim Ridgeway on the Onion Sports Network’s new series Get Out Of My Face — such a blast to work with this team.  I had the chance to work with one of the SportsDome anchors on a Super Bowl commercial for Dunkin Donuts.

 

 

Secret Santa – Jade Dragon

From the Late Night with Conan O’Brien archives.  You might recognize Michael Delaney from The Other Guys.