Category: Funny Or Die

Webby Awards name Louis C.K. 'person of the year'

Louis C.K.The Webby Awards, honoring the best of the Web, announced the 2012 award winners Tuesday, with Louis C.K. grabbing person of the year.

The reason is the comedian's self-distributed comedy special, "Louis C.K.: Live at the Beacon Theater," which he released on his own website for $5 apiece. The comic is also the star of the critically acclaimed FX series "Louie."

Artist of the year went to Bjork, and actresses of the year went to Juliette Lewis and Graydon Sheppard of the viral sensation "... Girls Say." (It should be noted that Sheppard is male).

Will Ferrell's George W. Bush impression paid off for him once again as the star won for individual performance for the Funny or Die video "President Bush Reacts to Osama Bin Laden's Death."

"Drunk History Christmas," also from Funny or Die, won for comedy long form or series. The short starred Ryan Gosling, Jim Carrey and Eva Mendes.

The complete list of winners is listed on the Webby Awards' website here. The awards will be passed out in New York City on May 21 with host Patton Oswalt.


Mocking the news: 10 classic Funny or Die videos

'The West Wing' cast reunites for walk and talk about walking

Louis C.K. drops correspondents' dinner after conservative outcry

— Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: Louis C.K. Credit: Michael Loccisano / Getty Images.

'The West Wing' cast reunites for walk and talk about walking

Some cast members of "The West Wing" have reunited for a Funny or Die short to promote the physical benefits of walking
The cast of NBC's classic Aaron Sorkin series "The West Wing" (some of them, anyway) have reunited for a new Funny or Die video that promotes American fitness through a signature bit of Sorkin-alia, the walk and talk.

Students of Sorkin know the walk and talk well from its extensive use on "Sports Night" and, especially, "The West Wing," in which the members of President Bartlett's staff seemed to endlessly cruise the halls of the White House, spewing rapid-fire banter and plot exposition as they went.

It's back in fine form in this video, produced for Everybody Walk!, the national campaign designed to get people up on their feet for just a few minutes every day. Allison Janney, Dule Hill, Joshua Malina, Melissa Fitzgerald, William Duffy and, of course, Martin Sheen, are back in their familiar "West Wing" personas, walking and talking about the physical benefits of walking and talking.

Though Janney calls Duffy by his actual last name, and the president is never referred to as Bartlett, there is a nice name-check for the dearly departed Mrs. Landingham in the sketch.

The banter may have that familiar Sorkin back-and-forth, but it actually wasn't written by the Oscar winner. Funny or Die writer-director Lauren Palmigiano is credited as the talent behind the camera for the two-minute clip.

Meanwhile, Sorkin returns to TV in June with "The Newsroom," which will no doubt feature a return to the golden age of the walk and talk.


Mocking the news: 10 classic Funny or Die videos

"Funny or Die's Billy on the Street" debuts on FuseTV

"True Blood" and "The Newsroom" to air on HBO in June

-- Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: From left, Dule Hill, Joshua Malina, Allison Janney, Melissa Fitzgerald and William Duffy. Credit:

'Funny or Die's Billy on the Street' debuts on FuseTV

Funny or Die's Bill on the Street debuts on FuseTV
Comedian Billy Eichner, the website "Funny or Die" and FuseTV are teaming up to test your pop culture savvy in "Funny or Die's Billy on the Street." OK, think fast:

On “Glee,” which requires the greatest suspension of disbelief?

A) That the Glee Club has a full-time adult band;
B) That McKinley High classrooms are equipped with AutoTune, while most high schools in this country are low on chairs;
C) That neither Jane Lynch nor Matthew Morrison’s characters aren't regularly sleeping with their students;
D) That the guy with the faux-hawk would be friends with any of these people.

Choose your answer carefully -– there could be money at stake!

On Thursday night, the music-centric FuseTV will debut a new music and pop culture trivia game show: “Funny Or Die’s Billy on the Street.” In the half-hour series, Eichner roams New York sidewalks accosting pedestrians with outrageous trivia questions and passing out cold cash for correct answers. It’s a fast-paced, high-energy quiz show that’s as much about the contestants as it is about celebrities, Eichner says.

“Pop culture is just a jumping off point. It’s about how opinionated people are about pop culture. Even old ladies will come at me with these specific, thoughtful opinions about Lady Gaga!” he says. “And it’s about this insane amount of passion and urgency I bring to these topics.” 

The die-hard New Yorker, who grew up in Forest Hills, Queens, says he was completely addicted to pop culture as a kid.

“My father would read me Page Six instead of, like, kids stories,” Eichner says. “Solid Gold' and 'Saturday Night Live.' I was obsessed with award shows and made charts and graphs and stuff when I was 7 years old. I found the entertainment business hilarious, ridiculous and alluring -- and my parents supported it, for better or worse.”

Eichner, a regular performer at New York’s Upright Citizen’s Brigade theater, has been honing the show’s concept -- and his frenzied, manic alter-ego -- ever since. He first created the pop culture video shorts in 2004 as part of a live comedy show, “Creation Nation,” that played in the East Village, he says.  

“I’d throw in a video here and there. The man on the street [bits] always got a huge reaction and became a big part of the show.” 

After Eichner uploaded several of the videos to YouTube in 2010, they went viral, he says.  

“They got picked up by Gawker, Huffington Post, Funny Or Die, a bunch of websites. Hundreds of thousands of views online. Soon after I got a call from “Funny Or Die.”

“Billy on the Street” is Funny Or Die’s third non-web TV show after “Funny Or Die Presents” on HBO and Comedy Central’s “Jon Benjamin Has a Van.” The show airs Thursday at 11 p.m. on FuseTV.

Oh, and the answer is: D.


'Pawn Stars' helps History finish in top five among cable networks

GLAAD's full-page ad denounces ABC cross-dressing sitcom 'Work It'

Late Night: Conan honors Hanukkah with 'Human Centipede' menorah

-- Deborah Vankin

Photo: Comedian Billy Eichner interviews passersby on the new show "Funny or Die's Billy on the Street." Credit: John Durgee / Fuse

Mocking the news: 10 classic Funny or Die videos

Fod It’s all about speed at Funny Or Die. The comedy website-turned-digital-entertainment-studio churns out 40-45 original video shorts a month, all on a compressed timeline by Hollywood standards.     Concepts are nailed on the fly and Web videos are set up via quick phone calls to A-list friends, often bypassing agents and managers entirely.

At the height of the Charlie Sheen media frenzy, they pitched him a cooking video. Three days later they shot it, edited it that night, and it was live on the site the next day.

Will Ferrell, who founded the site along with Adam McKay and Chris Henchy, calls it “guerrilla-style” production. He says the site’s making an effort to be extra-timely when it comes to current events, creating more sketches in sync with the news cycle.  Like a pig in a Donald Trump wig.  Or a Will and Kate reality show spoof.

Unlike “Saturday Night Live,” which is tied to a weekly production schedule, Funny Or Die can respond to current events practically while they’re still happening. “It moves so quickly and that’s kind of the beauty of it,” Ferrell says.

Read the L.A. Times Sunday Calendar feature on Funny Or Die.

Meanwhile, here are 10 classic news-based (give or take) Funny Or Die videos, after the jump. (Warning: many of the videos include profanity.)

--Deborah Vankin

Photo: Producer Mike Farah (standing) with editor/director Bradly Shulz (sitting) in the Funny or Die offices. Credit: Gary Friedman/Los Angeles Times.

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