Jewish Journal

Tag: Comedy

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  • Michaela Watkins: A supporting player takes the lead

    By Esther D. Kustanowitz

    September 8, 2015 | 1:49 pm

    If you’re one of those people who pays attention to supporting characters and comedy, you probably already know who Michaela Watkins is. She has been in the cast of “Saturday Night Live” (2008-09), as well as TV’s “The New Adventures of Old Christine,” “Enlightened” and “Trophy...

  • Jon Stewart homage to Andy Kaufman gave professional wrestling a lift

    By JNi.media

    July 13, 2015 | 12:24 pm

    This article originally appeared on Jewish News International.

    Comic Andy Kaufman must have been laughing in heaven at Jon Stewart’s foray into professional wrestling, and because of the boost “The Daily Show” host gave to the sport, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) is...

  • Judd Apatow: Comedy drawn from an ‘Unfair Life’

    June 19, 2015 | 8:31 am

    Judd Apatow’s phenomenal success seems the result of a willed and desperate act of adolescent defiance against a childhood that threatened to destroy him.  Apatow was adrift in Syosset, Long Island, where his parents were always viciously fighting before they divorced when he was...

  • Comedian Annabelle Gurwitch on 50 being the new 50

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    June 3, 2015 | 10:50 am

    “Fifty is the new 40? That’s total BS,” Annabelle Gurwitch, an acclaimed humorist, author and performer, said during a recent interview at a Chinese cafe in West Hollywood. Gurwitch, whose witty work has been compared to that of Nora Ephron, is 53. But, she said, “53 is like 83 in...

  • Laughter is comedian’s fountain of youth

    By Kylie Ora Lobell

    March 18, 2015 | 1:57 pm

    Legendary comedian Marty Allen, who turns 93 March 23, has a simple secret to longevity. 

    “I try to have an upbeat attitude all the time,” he said. “I enjoy entertaining, and I enjoy life.”

    To celebrate his birthday, he’s performing at the Downtown Grand Las Vegas hotel and...

  • We’re all ‘Old Jews’ at heart

    March 4, 2015 | 12:34 pm

    An old Jewish man walks into a restaurant, walks up to the maitre d’ and says: “Pardon me, how do you prepare your chicken?” The maitre d’ says, “We tell ’em right up front they ain’t gonna make it.”

    That’s just one of the many jokes that exemplify Jewish humor in the comedy...

  • Are there limits to humor?

    By Esther D. Kustanowitz

    February 26, 2015 | 5:22 pm

    Scandals involving rabbis or celebrities, a massively destructive Web hack, Ebola, Middle East unrest, growing anti-Semitism in Europe, even ISIS — when it comes to brainstorming for Purim content, today’s Jews see every strange or terrifying story as comedic potential. In...

  • ‘Interview’ screenwriter Dan Sterling: Fallout from comedy about Kim Jong-un isn’t so funny

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    December 12, 2014 | 4:34 pm

    DEVELOPING [Dec. 17, 2014]: Sony Pictures said on Wednesday it canceled the Dec. 25 theatrical release of its North Korea comedy "The Interview," after major U.S. theater chains pulled out of showing the film following threats from hackers.


    *Over coffee at a Larchmont...

  • Jewish humor in ‘Tent: Comedy’

    By Avishay Artsy

    October 14, 2014 | 1:56 pm

    Actor and comedian Jon Lovitz once offered this reason why so many Jews are funny: “To be funny, you have to suffer, suffer, suffer,” he said. “Jews, blacks, we’ve suffered a lot in the past. That makes us funny, I guess.”

    Maybe this talent is also a survival mechanism; as Milton...

  • The Raging Jews of Comedy

    September 23, 2014 | 11:37 am

    Memo to the building maintenance staff at Beverly Hills High School: Pay the air conditioning bill. Please do this well in advance of filling the K.L. Peters Auditorium with a crowd, particularly when you plan to shoot footage of both performers and audience that may be used for an...

  • Interviewing Joan Rivers

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    September 4, 2014 | 3:28 pm

    In May 2013, I was more than a tad nervous when asked to conduct a 45-minute Q&A with Rivers following a performance of her act at the American Jewish University.  Rivers, after all, was the notorious fashion polista of the red carpet awards scene, so ruthless that she once...

  • Before Sarah Silverman, Carol Leifer had to break into the boys club

    By Danielle Berrin

    August 11, 2014 | 5:25 pm

    Showbiz pioneer Carol Leifer is one of Hollywood’s best-kept secrets, even though her resume boasts stints on some of the most popular and memorable television shows of the last half-century --- “Seinfeld,” “Saturday Night Live” and “The Late Show with David Letterman,” among them....

  • The Shout! Factory releases “The Marx Brothers TV Collection”

    By Tom Teicholz

    August 6, 2014 | 11:14 am

    The Shout! Factory release of “The Marx Brothers TV Collection,” an omnibus of the Brothers Marx’s post-film career TV appearances, is occasion enough to celebrate once more the irrepressible talents of Groucho, Chico and Harpo Marx. 

    I suppose there may be some readers who have...

  • Somber state of comedy in the mideast

    January 16, 2014 | 2:44 pm

    Humor is a great vehicle, and political humor is actually one of the greatest tools of political critique. In some Western societies, political humor is more popular than straight politics and certainly more popular than the evening news. Many more Americans watch Jon Stewart on...

  • Calendar Dec 14-20

    By Laura Donney

    December 11, 2013 | 12:32 pm

    SAT | DEC 14


    Shmuel Tikvah, a young Nigerian, heard time and time again about the Igbo people, who claim descent from ancient Israelites. Research at an Internet cafe leads him on a quest to find this Nigerian Jewish community, which keeps...

  • “Suck it, Christmas”: The story of a Chanukah comedy album

    By Julie Bien

    November 22, 2013 | 1:51 pm

    Rachel Bloom, 26, and Dan Gregor and Jack Dolgen, both 31, have just released their first Chanukah album, "Suck it, Christmas"--an adult-themed comedic ode to the standard holiday music released en masse this time of year. The Jewish Journal was able to interview the trio of...

  • Calendar: November 2-8

    By Laura Donney

    October 30, 2013 | 1:12 pm

    SAT | NOV 2


    In honor of Rosh Chodesh, a holiday dedicated to women, tonight’s performance is dedicated to the women who make us laugh. Hilarious, poignant and risqué, these comedians make up the SheBREWS — eight fabulous female comics who dominate the...

  • Billy Crystal culture

    By Danielle Berrin

    September 24, 2013 | 11:14 am

    Even in the age of Louis C.K. and Sarah Silverman, there is something both retro and refreshing about Billy Crystal’s class-act comedy.

    On a recent Thursday night, nearly 600 people packed into the Directors Guild of America Theater — at $60 a pop — to hear Crystal’s mesmerizing...

  • Yakov Smirnoff’s elixir of love

    September 3, 2013 | 12:59 pm

    Yakov Smirnoff has been in the comedy business for more than 30 years. He knows how to make people laugh. 

    Now, he’s trying to show everyone just how important laughter is when it comes to relationships. 

    Smirnoff, who spent the past two decades showcasing his act at his...

  • To no one’s surprise, Avi Hoffman is “still Jewish”

    August 20, 2013 | 11:39 am

    Over the course of his 90-minute one-man show, Avi Hofmann never reveals why he feels the need to remind his audience that he’s still Jewish. It’s hard to imagine how anyone could forget.

    The 55-year-old’s “Avi Hoffman: Still Jewish After All These Years” is an extended showcase...

  • Summer Snippets Part 1

    By Elliot Steingart

    July 24, 2013 | 9:38 am

    The summer of 2013 is a collection of meaningful memories, memories of traveling to Pittsburgh, and the Black Hills of South Dakota for friends' weddings, and such.

    Pittsburgh is home, and will remain home until no one volunteers to scoop me from the airport. Zach pulls up in his...

  • Surrounded by Kids

    By Elliot Steingart

    June 25, 2013 | 9:36 am

    I was surrounded by kids for an entire day. In a span of eight hours, I was kicked in the groin and nearly run over by a Fisher Price bicycle. All proof that the first day of summer is the longest day of the year.

    These kids were more combative than a street gang out of...

  • Judy Gold: Coming out as a sitcom addict

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    June 19, 2013 | 3:34 pm

    Comedian Judy Gold describes herself as a 6-foot-3, kosher-keeping Jewish lesbian and mother of two, and she’s always thought her life would be perfect fodder for a sitcom. She’s got a partner, an ex, two precocious sons, a bunch of eccentric neighbors and a “crazy-making” mom who,...

  • When comedy was kosher

    By Tom Tugend

    May 30, 2013 | 1:10 pm

    The Los Angeles Jewish Film Festival would not be worthy of its name without a substantial serving of Jewish humor, and much of this year’s nourishment is provided by two movies honoring the great comedians and writers who flourished around the middle of last century and later.

  • Billy Crystal to star in Larry Charles’ FX series

    May 23, 2013 | 10:05 am

    Looks like FX is going to be injecting some humor into their lineup. Not a bad idea, we think, after many seasons of the awesome yet dark series “Justified” or “Sons of Anarchy.”

    Billy Crystal will star in the network’s new half-hour series, “The Comedians,” according to The...

  • Mel Brooks’ top 10 Jewy Jewish scenes [VIDEO]

    May 20, 2013 | 10:36 am

    Monday night marks the national premier broadcast of the American Masters installment on Mel Brooks. To mark the occasion, we’ve put together a collection of Brooks’ best Jewish clips.

    What exactly that means is a good question. As with two others recent subjects on the PBS...

  • Stage Time with Steven Alan Green needs your attention now

    By Steven Alan Green

    May 16, 2013 | 12:22 pm

    Dear Steven Alan Green Fans:

    Short blog today.  I need your help. Financially, yes; but we'll get to that in a minute.  Here's the deal.   Now, many of you know me as this "really interesting writer guy who started The Laughter Foundation, who lived in England for many years and...

  • Handy Man

    By Elliot Steingart

    April 12, 2013 | 11:23 am

    I made a new friend. His name is Jose Luis. I knew he was my friend as soon as he said "Hello, my friend."

    Jose Luis helped me move my bed, kitchen table and love seat into my new apartment down the hall from where I used to live. He also mounted my TV. My girlfriend led the...

  • The Odd Appearance of Jewish Superman

    By Abe Fried-Tanzer

    April 7, 2013 | 6:55 am

    Sometimes, a mention of Judaism on television just comes from completely out of nowhere. When I sat down to watch the premiere episode of ABC’s new comedy How to Live with Your Parents (For the Rest of Your Life) last Wednesday night, I wasn’t expecting to hear anything about...

  • One Israeli Creation for the Weekend

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    April 5, 2013 | 1:36 pm

    Six neighbors (Five women and one man,) gather every year to watch the a worldwide, TV broadcast song contest, Universong. In their latest gathering, they discover that Anat, a member of the gang, was just left by her husband. In a moment of friendship, they spontaneously compose a...

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