Flula Borg is a German actor, musician, comedian and DJ who began making his mark on American audiences in 2015 — that’s when he broke through out of YouTube to become one of Variety’s 10 Comics to Watch, as he starred in an NBC pilot and co-starred in the smash hit movie, Pitch Perfect 2. Since then, Flula has popped up in a variety of supporting roles on shows such as Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Good Place, collaborated on videos with Sir Mix-A-Lot, Ed Helms, and Dirk Nowitzki, and toured on the road with Conan O’Brien and Team Coco. That was before the pandemic hit. Over the past year, Flula has worked with Jägermeister and Save Our Stages to rally support and money for live entertainment venues. Flula will have an even bigger profile this summer as he plays Javelin in the big-screen superhero flick, The Suicide Squad. Before that, he happily spoke with me a little bit about his work with corporate sponsors, his early days in America, collaborating with Grace Helbig, and along the way, we inadvertently came up with a pitch for Flula’s first comedy special and/or series for Team Coco and HBO Max. Call us, Conan! So let’s get to it!
Fresh out of Houston to Flatbush, Brooklyn, Kevin Iso’s friendship with fellow young comedian Dan Perlman led to making YouTube video slice of life sketches with their funny friends. They went from “Moderately Funny” to Showtime. In between, Iso’s stand-up landed him a showcase spot on Adam Devine’s House Party on Comedy Central, as well as This Week at the Comedy Cellar, a recurring role on Hulu’s TV adaptation of High Fidelity, and a writing gig on That Damn Michael Che for HBO Max. 2021 will see if Iso can really break out, as he’s the co-creator and co-star of his own series, Flatbush Misdemeanors on Showtime. Iso sat down with me to talk about managing his expectations on his way up the show-business ladder, so let’s get to it!
Originally from Boston, Sam Jay is an Emmy-nominated writer and critically-acclaimed stand-up comedian. After being named one of Variety’s 10 Comics to Watch in 2018, Jay made her Netflix debut on The Comedy Lineup and released her first album, “Donna’s Daughter,” with Comedy Central Records. Jay’s 2020 Netflix special, 3 in the Morning, was one of that year’s best. As a writer, her credits include the Emmy Awards, the MTV Movie & TV Awards, and until the end of 2020, Saturday Night Live. She left SNL to create, write and star in her own talk show for HBO, Pause with Sam Jay. Each week, Jay hosts a party at her apartment, where she and her guests explore different difficult topics, and then she hits the road to interview strangers about it. Jay invited me over via Zoom to fill me in, so before you hit pause, let’s get to it!
John van der Put is a magician and comedian from the UK much better known by his stage name as Piff the Magic Dragon. Piff has performed at the Edinburgh Fringe, toured with Mumford and Sons, fooled Penn & Teller on television and charmed the United States on America’s Got Talent. Piff has held court for the last few years as a headlining act on the Vegas Strip at the Flamingo Las Vegas Hotel and Casino. Variety named Piff of the magazine’s 10 Comics to Watch in 2019, and in the summer of 2020, Piff won the inaugural TBS Tournament of Laughs competition. In the fall of 2020, the Flamingo moved Piff into its even bigger 800-seat theater, although he could only sell 20 percent of the tickets due to pandemic protocols. Over Zoom, Piff told me about all of the stages magicians have to go through before they even hit the stage, the economic barriers to entry and success for elite magicians, and how the other Vegas headliners made Piff feel welcome when he first arrived in America — plus how he paid them back by including them in his TV gigs. So let’s get to it!