Lewis Black is now headlining New Video Tuesday. Hear what he has to say about Michael Richards and, if Michael ever opened a comedy club, what it should be called. Jump over to the Video page to check it out.
Rolling Stone just talked with Carl Montgomery and Paul Krassner, both of whom appear in "Looking for Lenny", about Lenny, his legacy and "Looking for Lenny".
From the article:
Looking for Lenny examines recent controversies over the use of language, including racial slurs used by talk show host Don Imus and comedian Michael Richards. When Bruce used similar language on stage – often incessantly – it was to expose its absurdity. The real crime in the Richards case, says comedian Orlando Jones in the film, was that "there was no punchline."
Such incidents demonstrate Bruce's prescience, said Krassner: "When he was called a 'sick' comic, he was really trying to reflect the implications of a sick society. And the critics blamed the messenger."
In this clip comedian Christopher Titus discusses Lenny, addiction and social responsibility. Christopher gave us a fantastic interview and I'm glad we have an opportunity on this website to share with you some of the things he said that were cut from the film due to time. Head on over to the Video page to check it out.
I don’t agree with some of Buchanan’s ideas, especially regarding Jews, his questioning of whether World War II had to happen or whether the United States should be involved militarily in the Middle East, but he has every right to his ideas, as we all have the right to our own. It’s called free speech.
The approach to free speech should be like the one taken by the ACLU in 1977 when neo-Nazis made plans to march through the Jewish suburb of Skokie, Ill. While deploring their views, the ACLU defended the group’s right to express itself.
This article caught my eye because it is specifically a topic we talk about in "Looking for Lenny". Late in his life Lenny had a number of run-ins with the law because of what he said on stage, who he poked fun of and what topics he broached. He was arrested and forced to stand trial all across the country. I think we all can agree that getting tossed in jail is a far cry from just getting laid off (which is what happened in this case to Pat Buchanan). I don't think it's a First Amendment issue because the government is not involved. Pat Buchanan is free to express his views and opinions and MSNBC is free to decide whether or not to put Pat Buchanan on the air. Something to think about though is, if voices are getting silenced is the end result any different if it's the government or corporations doing the silencing?
Filmmaker Troy Duffy gets his turn in the spotlight as he talks about inappropriate things to say at kid's birthday parties. Hit up our Video page to see what will get Troy to drag you outside by your hair!
It's now Sandra Bernhard\'s time to shine as she talks about Lenny Bruce and hot button issues of his day that are still hot button issues today (almost a half-century later). Head over to the Video page to check it out.
Comedian, writer and Emmy-nominated song writer Robert Klein, who was gracious enough to be interviewed for "Looking for Lenny", will be doing a Q&A after a screening of the film at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival. If you happen to be in the New York area on April 24th we'd love it if you could come out and show your support.
Want to know if "Looking for Lenny" will be screening in your area? Keep an eye on the Screenings tab on the home page (right under the trailer) to all the upcoming screening info.
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Thank you very much for your interest and support of our
labor of love which was five years in the making.
"[Rob] Riggle is one of numerous comedians, actors and producers interviewed as part of Elan Gale’s moving 2011 tribute "Looking for Lenny”. It is a lucky documentary that benefits from interviews with its direct subject; here, Gale does not have this luxury and must be satisfied with the compassionate post-mortem provided by Bruce’s family, friends and admirers. The great experience of being part of the comedy scene, but also the great obligation, is acknowledged by Bruce’s colleagues, and he is credited for taking on the irreverent quality so needed in stand-up which would pave the way for hundreds of comics after him.”
Head over to SkyArts.co.ukto read more and look up show times in your area.
the controversial boundary-pushing of New York-born comedian and
satirist Lenny Bruce, the lineage and development of comedy itself would
surely have followed a very different path. Venturing into previously
untrodden territory and questioning widely recognised standards of
censorship, Bruce fought to make comedy a free-for-all where no topic
was too precious or taboo to be discussed.”
Elan Gale has a point to make, and it is this: the reason people like
me are allowed to write ‘fuck’ in a social context without fear of
repercussion is because people like Lenny Bruce did it first and
suffered the repercussions for us. Gale isn’t alone. His film, Looking
for Lenny, is filled with comedians (like Lewis Black, Robin Williams,
and Phyllis Diller) and, for lack of a better phrase, social
ne’er-do-wells (like Hugh Hefner and Ron Jeremy) who make the same
point. They are compelling, and I am convinced – but the film is much
more than a biography.Looking for Lenny expounds on the subject of
political correctness and censorship, and discusses Michael Richard’s
racist rant and Don Imus’s firing. Through it all, Lenny Bruce himself
remains something of an elusive figure in his own documentary.”
My favorite part of the review is below. It speaks directly to a couple of the topics we wanted to address with the movie.
title "Looking for Lenny” is apt – part of Gale’s point is that Lenny
Bruce’s legacy is poorly understood, due in part to its relationship to
the social politics behind obscenity and humour. This brings us to
places like Michael Richard’s racist tirade at the Laugh Factory, and
the difference between jokes about race and simple racism. It’s a
“Looking for Lenny” at the 2011 Toronto Jewish Film Festival
13 February 2012
Guess what’s going to be a part of the opening night festivities? That’s right, a screening of "Looking for Lenny” will help kickoff the 2011 Toronto Jewish Film Festival. Below is an excerpt of what the fine people at the TJFF have to say about "Looking for Lenny".
"This thought-provoking documentary not only looks at Bruce’s influence and legacy, but also offers a rare glimpse of the man behind the mythology. Interspersed with archival footage from his appearances on the Steve Allen Show, and audio-clips of some of his most famous bits, are interviews with the likes of Mort Sahl, Phyllis Diller, Lewis Black, Richard Lewis, Sandra Bernhard, Jonathan Winters, Robert Klein, Shelley Berman and others.”
are going to be screened at the Beat Generation Days event in Paris,
April 2011! Matt (producer) and Kitty (Lenny’s daughter) are going to
make the transatlantic trip to talk about the film. Beat Generation
Days examines the Parisian influence on the Beat Generation.