Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Phil Hartman's Audition Tape

Phil Hartman was a legend in American comedy. You probably know him best as Lionel Hutz and Troy McClure on The Simpsons. If you can watch him in NewsRadio as he knocks the socks off his fellow actors in that show.

This is his Saturday Night Live audition tape.

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Limmy's Show – Behind the Scenes

I hope you all watched Limmy's Show. If you didn't you can now by watching it on the BBC iPlayer. As I didn't write anything about the recording of the show when I was doing it I thought I would write a wee bit now that the show has went out. However, there's no scandal or crazy antics that would really make interesting reading. Everyone who worked on it was lovely and dead professional.

Unsurprisingly doing Limmy's Show was about the best week of work I've done in my life. The whole production started off with the John Paul sketch where I play a hapless passer-by who gets hounded. Brian filmed this with me in March last year for his Comedy Festival show. That time it was only me, him and a video camera. This time round we went back to the same spots in the Botanic Gardens with a crew of about 20 folk. Handy, since when I fell flat on my face running too fast when I was out of shot anyway, I could change into clean clothes and have the dirt wiped off my face by April, the kindly costume lady.

Brian has told me more than once that he's worried if I go through the Botanics again in the next few months I'll get chased about by neds. I'll let youse all know if that happens.

From reading the script the two sketches that made me laugh out loud on the page were the one with the wee boy on the bus and the Mr. Mulvaney sketch. I think they both turned out to be two of the show's highlights. The wee boy was as cute and happy on the set as he looked in the programme.

As well as Limmy, the other actors on the show were great fun to work with. Debbie Welsh has been in several shows and you may have recognised her from her recent appearances in No Holds Bard or the Rab C. Nesbitt Christmas special. Raymond Mearns probably had the best wee bit of acting out of the three of us with his 'Bed' scene. The way he held his expression and kept it all quite small was great. Raymond is of course a well kent face around the comedy circuit and his patter on the way to the set in the morning kept us all amused.

Ironically the sketch I had the most fun filming was the only one where Brian wasn't in the room. He was off in make up while Debbie, Raymond and I filmed the boardroom part of the Twenty's Plenty sketch. Everyone simply made each other laugh throughout the filming, the three of us, the crew and the art department. One of those moments where you realise you're really quite lucky getting to do something like that for a job.

Everyone who worked on the show was really nice and a pleasure to be around. Here's hoping we all get to work together again.

I realise this is all a bit 'What I did in my summer holidays' but until I get cast in a David O. Russell film I'm afraid it'll be all this folk being nice to one another carry-on. Unless you want to hear about the short film I did a month or two later...

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Limmy's Show (on the Telly)

As you may know already Limmy's Show is set to air on the telly this week. Tomorrow in fact. The details are below.

Wednesday 18th February, 10pm
BBC2 Scotland (Sky 990 / Freesat 970)

And repeated...
Monday 23rd February, 11:15pm
BBC1 Scotland (Sky 971 / Freesat 960)

It's also on the BBC iPlayer.

If you need any more reason to watch it other than the fact that it's set to be pretty funny then how about this - I'm in it. You can look out for me getting chased around the Botanic Gardens as well as in a few other places.

Come back on Thursday morning and I'll tell you what it was like working on. There's no crazy tales of rants or 20 point memos of dos and don'ts around the talent, just a pleasant working environment, but while I'm in a hot show on the telly I may as well write a wee bit about it.

You should also be able to catch Limmy this morning on MacAulay & Co from 10am on Radio Scotland.

So that show again Limmy's Show. And the time and location Wednesday 18th February 10pm on BBC2.

Friday, 13 February 2009

GFF Opening Gala

I attended the opening gala of the Glasgow Film Festival last night. The GFT had a red carpet laid out on the way in and through to the foyer. There were several photographers in action, lifting their cameras when someone came across the red carpet and dropping them again when they turned out to be no one.

Glue's photographer of choice Heidi was one of them and I'm sure she'll have some pics up on her site soon.

There were sundry complimentary drinks on offer. More accurately complimentary fizzy wine, no soft drinks that I could see. When I got into the cinema there were goodie bags on every seat. At first glance it appeared that someone had gone round pubs in Glasgow and chucked all the free magazines and brochures they could find into a cloth sack, on closer inspection however there were a couple of all right things in there.

A miniature Auchentoshan whisky, two copies of The List magazine (one to read, one for the bin), several vouchers for two for ones in fancy coffee shops, free passes for some club or other, a promotional DVD on Glasgow and a bottle of still lemonade. There was also two free passes to visit the Auchentoshan Distillery and that I may well do.

Although the time on the ticket said 7.15 by 7.30 the film was still nowhere near starting and the folk in my row were repeatedly getting up to go and get more free wine. This of course meant that I was constantly lifting up my jacket, bag and free bag of junk.

By 8 o'clock we got the opening speeches from the festival directors, then by some dignitaries. Finally Armando Iannucci came up to the mic to introduce his film and reminisce about "Dogging maths to come in here to see Felicity Kendall do a talk."

The film that I was there to see was, of course, In The Loop. Although not strictly a film version of The Thick of It, it does share a couple of characters and several actors.

It was abolsutely brilliant from the first scene on. Peter Capaldi is outstanding in his role as Malcolm Tucker. The rest of the cast too are on form from Tom Hollander as the hapless, bungling minister to Chris Addison, David Rasche, James Gandolfini, Paul Higgins and Gina McKie.

With the story crossing over into Washington it was interesting to see Tucker come up against Americans who don't have the same fear for him that his colleagues in London do.

After the screening there was an entertaining Q & A with Iannucci, Capaldi and Addison along with the writers and producers.

This is Iannucci's Sundance film diary when the film premiered over there.

On my way out I stopped to listen in to a row between two men probably both in middle age. One of them was shouting to the other that he had ruined the film for him by talking all the way through it. There appeared to be a half-hearted challenge to 'Take it outside'. One of them nearly spilled their free wine.

Joaquin Phoenix on The Late Show with David Letterman

Joaquin Phoenix on the Late Show with David Letterman. Phoenix has recently announced his retirement from acting and a move into hip-hop. Some people think that his performance was a stunt for the Casey Affleck directed documentary about him. Other people think he's off his head. James Gray who directed his latest film as well as a couple of others, says he's baffled by his behaviour.

More great Letterman moments at this link.

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Inglorious Basterds Trailer

Down below is a trailer for Quentin Tarantino's new film Inglorious Basterds.

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Jon Stewart Nails Bill O'Reilly

You may have seen this elsewhere but it's too good a bit of on the money comedy to not link to. Jon Stewart and The Daily Show gleefully pinpoint nutcase Fox broadcaster Bill O'Reilly's hypocrisy.

The Onion News Network

A couple of goodies from the Onion News Network. A depressent for the annoyingly cheerful and then down below that and definitely not safe for work Sony releases a new piece of shit that doesn't work.

Thursday, 5 February 2009

The FA Cup Cock-Up

There was an FA Cup fourth-round replay played last night between Everton and Liverpool. It was on live on ITV, but not for viewers in Scotland. The reason for this is STV's eagerness to frequently 'opt-out' of network programming. When the BBC had the rights to the FA Cup the whole of Britain got to see it. I'd thought we were past the days when we were forced to watch 'a quiz about hills presented by Paul Coia' when the rest of Britain enjoyed football, Seinfeld or other quality programming. Apparently not.

What STV showed instead was a repeat of Foyle's War. Not what STV said they would do in this slot - broadcast locally produced output. Being involved in the Scottish entertainment industry myself I would be delighted if the decision allowed STV the opportunity to create and air new Scottish programmes at primetime. Except that doesn't seem to be what STV are doing. The suggestion all along was that they have taken the nip at paying what they perceive to be too much money for network programming.

So instead I watched the game online at ITV's website. The match itself was an utter borefrest, with I don't think one shot on target all throughout 90 minutes. When the game moved into extra time forcing the News at Ten to be delayed, STV the top drawer broadcasters they are, marked time for around 50 minutes by playing filler programmes such as Moviejuice Moments and a profile on Beyonce as well as showing repeated adverts for forthcoming shows.

It was little better on ITV and online however as with two minutes remaining in extra-time ITV cut to an ad break. When they returned Everton supersub Dan Gosling was celebrating with his team-mates having just slotted the ball into the net for the game's only goal (and shot on target). You can watch that debacle down below.

In the game's commentary this little beauty was reported by several people on online forums. Bear in mind that Phil Jagielka and Phil Neville are team-mates who were playing alongside one another last night.

"Phil Jagielka, with his versatility, he is a modern day Phil Neville."

Sunday, 1 February 2009

Dali on What's My Line

This is an episode of the game show What's My Line. The guest that the panel have to identify is Salvador Dali.

Important Things With Demetri Martin

Here is a trailer for Demetri Martin's new show 'Important Things With Demetri Martin'.

Mary & Bill Hicks on Letterman

Here is Friday night's appearance by Mary Hicks on Late Night With David Letterman.

Letterman apologises several times for cutting Hicks' performance from that 1993 show and admits that the decision was his and his alone. He now seems baffled as to why he took the steps that he did.

"What was the matter with me? What was I thinking?"

Here is John Lahr's profile of Hicks in the aftermath of the censorship.

Sunday Video Playlist

Here is a selction of videos for your pleasure. Hit play and they'll play one after the other. Or watch them individually.

First up is Last Call Cleveland and Duelling Stand-Ups.

Next it's the trailer for the forthcoming film adaptation of David Peace's novel The Damned United.

Then it's a sketch from this coming Tuesday's episode of Cowards on BBC4.

After that it's Chris Rock from the newly released on DVD Kill the Messenger talking about his rich neighbourhood.

Finally, my mum put me onto this one, it's Todd Carty hilariously skating off the ice on Dancing on Ice.