Rachel Bloom is the creator and star of Crazy Ex-Girfriend on The CW, for which she has won the Golden Globe and the Critics Choice Award for best actress in a comedy series. Bloom’s first big break in musical comedy came in 2010, when she made a music video celebrating author Ray Bradbury. Along the way, she has written and/or performed for Allen Gregory, Robot Chicken, and BoJack Horseman. She's taking Crazy Ex-Girlfriend on a live theater tour this spring, and she next co-stars in Most Likely To Murder, a movie written and directed by her husband, Dan Gregor. He joins in our discussion, so let’s get to it!
Bill Hader was nominated for three Emmy Awards for acting during his eight seasons as a cast member on Saturday Night Live, has written for South Park, lent his voice to animated hits such as Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and Inside Out, and served up memorable supporting roles in the films Superbad, Tropic Thunder and Trainwreck. After co-creating the great IFC mockumentary series Documentary Now! He now stars as Barry in HBO’s Barry, about a Marine veteran who becomes a hit-man, but realizes his true potential, or disastrous end, could come by pursuing an acting career in Hollywood. Hader created, wrote, directed and executive produced Barry with Alec Berg, no stranger to HBO as a past EP on Curb Your Enthusiasm and current EP on Silicon Valley. Hader and Berg sat down with me during SXSW in Austin to explain how and why they made Barry. So let’s get to it!
Sharon Houston punked Magic Johnson, Too Short, and 18 other celebrities on Punk’d, fooled Kim Kardashian’s fans on Celebrities Undercover, and has filmed hidden-camera pilots for VH1, E!, Disney Channel, Style Network and Dick Clark Productions. Sharon has been a fixture in clubs and cabarets since the 1990s, first in New York City and more recently in Los Angeles. Her podcast, Daytime Justice, looks under the robe at daytime court TV shows and reveals behind-the-scenes stories from her work as a show producer. Sharon has performed stand-up on Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, MTV and VH1, and she appeared on Nick Swardson’s Pretend Time. She released her first comedy album, “Shuran Shuran,” in late 2017. And in early 2018, she sat down with me in Hollywood to talk shop. As Jon Stewart once told her: “Stop complaining. This is the fun part.” So let’s get to it!
Brian Volk-Weiss is the founding president of Comedy Dynamics, which grew out of New Wave Entertainment to become the largest independent stand-up comedy production and distribution company. You see the Comedy Dynamics logo on almost every new stand-up special you see these days, no matter where you see it. Since 2016, his company also has produced series such as History’s Join or Die with Craig Ferguson, Animal Planet’s Animal Nation with Anthony Anderson, There’s Johnny… which started at Seeso and ended up at Hulu. I caught up with Brian in his offices in Burbank, California a few days before the Grammy Awards, where he had an 80 percent chance of being responsible for the Grammy-winning Best Comedy Album of 2017. So let’s get to it!