Chris Distefano Isn’t Trying to Save the World in His New Comedy Central Special

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Comic and actor Chris Distefano is heading into 2019 robust. Together with his first hour standup particular premiering, his common TV collection prolonged, and an general cope with Comedy Central, Chris has grow to be a favourite with audiences and business insiders alike. Chris’ first hour special- Chris Distefano: Measurement 38 Waist– will premiere as a part of the “January Stand up Month” on Comedy Central January 18th, 2019. We spoke with Chris about his new particular, the present local weather in comedy and his new workload with Comedy Central.

The Interrobang: It’s your first hour particular with Comedy Central… you’ve been a part of their brigade for some time, so it’s good to see that they arrange a particular for you.

Chris Distefano: I did a half hour particular with them in 2014, and now I’m doing the hour. At Comedy Central they’re really like household to me. I’m fortunate to have a brand new entire cope with them… I’m creating a secondary particular and have an animated collection in improvement. There’s additionally an unscripted present coming, and my present Silly Questions was simply greenlit for extra episodes, that exhibits as interstitials on Friday nights. So, I sort of really feel like staff Comedy Central… name me “Chris D Comedy Central”. It’s an excellent place…I began off with MTV and now I feel it’s a pleasant development, the individuals there have all the time believed in me, so I’m actually completely happy.

The Interrobang: It looks like you’re an actual utility participant for them, it exhibits that they’ve loads of religion in you.

Chris Distefano: Yeah, give a straight male an opportunity! I had a sitcom with CBS about my life that wound up not getting picked up. In a approach, that was a blessing in disguise… as a result of with these networks you’ve to be shiny and clear. Now Comedy Central is permitting me, by means of this animated collection, to be me. You recognize a whole lot of my life includes jokes and tales you possibly can’t even movie on CBS. Now I can go as edgy as I would like. I identical to comedy that’s truthful, and on my pilot…I loved doing it, however you bought to make issues up… it has to be palatable for individuals in the Midwest. Thankfully, with Comedy Central… they advised me to simply be humorous… we’ll see what occurs.

The Interrobang: Is the animated collection going to cowl what you have been making an attempt to do with the sitcom, however take it a step additional?

Chris Distefano: Precisely… It’s somewhat totally different. In the sitcom pilot they made it about me making an attempt to get again along with my ex for my daughter’s sake. However that is about me being a full single dad, elevating slightly Puerto Rican woman, and the precise tales from my life.

The Interrobang: I keep in mind the buzz if you first introduced the pilot and it sounded prefer it was going to be actually nice… however sadly it by no means occurred.

Chris Distefano: Properly blame it on Les Moonves (laughing). Nah, it wasn’t even his fault, regardless of being produced by Carter Bays, the similar man who did How I Met Your Mom, It’s a type of issues that simply wasn’t meant to be. I’m fairly positive each sitcom CBS picked up that yr they wound up canceling anyway. So it’s a blessing… as a result of if they might have picked up my present and canceled it, I wouldn’t have the alternative to retool it for this animated collection.

I made some nice relationships with Carter Bays, and an superior friendship with Chazz Palminteri. We’re nonetheless good buddies now. Additionally, Annie Potts performed my mother, and she or he was so superior. My favourite films rising up have been Ghostbusters and A Bronx Story, so it was surreal that my TV mother and pop have been in each these films.

The Interrobang: Listening to all the tales about your Dad out of your act, how did he really feel whenever you turned pals with Chazz?

Chris Distefano: He was so impressed. Once I filmed the pilot my dad got here out to LA and he referred to as a sit down with Chazz Palminteri. He requested to have espresso, and Chazz obliged. They talked for like two hours, Chazz stated it was actually nice, he stated he discovered elements of my dad which might be actual, after which performed my dad spot on. It was cool, and they’re nonetheless pals… they “old guy” e-mail now… one man sends an e-mail and the different man responds 4 months later, that’s the method it really works.

The Interrobang: Again to the particular a bit… I feel lots of people can relate to your materials as a result of it is extremely identifiable. Most individuals see themselves simply as common people, to allow them to see their very own households and their very own conditions in your comedy.

Chris Distefano: That’s what I hope will get throughout to the individuals who see it. I needed to be very conversational, so individuals really feel like they’re simply speaking to me at the finish of a bar. I had the probability to make lots of people snort, and I had a enjoyable time performing some crowd work… which went rather well. When individuals see the particular, they’ll know what I imply once I say that I by no means met the man I did crowd work earlier than, he was not a plant. I swear on Derek Jeter.  It’s additionally loopy that I used to be actually sick once I filmed the particular. So, getting an enormous pop from the crowd work up entrance actually helped me. Your adrenaline goes by means of the roof, and all the illness goes away.

The Interrobang: Watching a particular like this it’s simpler to determine with somebody who has actual issues happening. You’ve gotten a daughter and are a part of her life as a single father, you’ve gotten some points together with your dad, and your mother and father are divorced. It appears slightly extra actual than some specials the place comics are simply “supposing” or saying “wouldn’t the world be better if you just listen to what I say”.

Chris Distefano: Yeah, I by no means get political with my comedy. It’s simply all the shit that occurred to me, it’s all about my life. My comedy isn’t going to make you consider the world, it’s simply coming to see me for an hour and escaping actuality. I would like individuals to simply chuckle, as an alternative of getting to take into consideration points deeply… I’m not sensible sufficient for that.

The Interrobang: One other identifiable factor is I feel most individuals really feel that we’re simply observers to the world round us. We don’t say a lot about it… we simply observe.

Rising up in Brooklyn I used to be the man that acquired punched in the face lots.

Chris Distefano: Yeah, rising up in Brooklyn I used to be the man that obtained punched in the face so much. I obtained my ft planted in actuality… I noticed that I’m certainly one of 9 billion individuals, and I don’t actually matter. No one actually issues, no one cares… Presidents, Kings all of them die like everyone else. Everyone forgets about them ultimately, who cares? Truthfully, simply have enjoyable… deal with everybody with kindness and respect. But when I don’t use the proper pronoun, or by accident overlook in the future to recycle… don’t behead me. Don’t deal with me like the worst individual ever. If we disagree about who we voted for, who provides a shit? I feel individuals are so bored that individuals are getting mad at silly crap that basically doesn’t matter.  I’m simply conscious that I’m not going to save the world. I attempt to do great things, however I really feel like we’re in a world the place individuals are simply ready for you to make a mistake to allow them to assault you. I’m not like that; I give individuals the advantage of the doubt and second possibilities all the time. Who the hell am I to decide somebody?

The Interrobang: Shannon Hartman directed your particular; she has an amazing historical past of directing a few of the greatest specials which have come out on Comedy Central over the previous 10 years.

Chris Distefano: Shannon Hartman and Michelle Caputo have been the co-directors and producers. They have been implausible; they picked out the set and the digital camera angles and the outfit. They knew the particular can be good, as a result of the jokes are good and I put the work in. They stated… “We will make you look as good as we can, and you just focus on being funny”. They didn’t hassle me to speak for 3 hours about the lighting– they took care of all that stuff.

It’s the world that we stay in, plenty of comics have specials on Netflix and it begins to make a particular not particular anymore. What Comedy Central is doing with the January Month of Stand-ups (additionally starring comedic heavyweights Ron Funches, James Davis and Roy Wooden Jr.) is that they vetted everybody being featured. Comedy Central doesn’t launch 50 specials a yr… it’s like 5…so all the comedians have been vetted they usually’re going to be nice specials. They pulled everyone collectively for this massive push… so it’s everyone that they’ve confidence in. The one quota they’ve to fill right here is humorous. I additionally had Chazz Palminteri introduce me for the particular in order that was an amazing opener.

The Interrobang: Your podcast Historical past Hyenas with cohost Yannis Pappas can also be doing rather well.

Chris Distefano: I really like Historical past Hyenas. Podcasting is clearly now the means to go. Like, if I received on Joe Rogan’s podcast one million extra individuals will watch my particular… it’s like being on The Tonight Present with Johnny Carson. Your profession modifications in a single day when you can crush it with a man like Rogan or Marc Maron. So, me and Yannis are rising our model with the podcast. Aside from my Comedy Central stuff, that’s my large ardour, we launch the present Sundays free of charge after which Thursdays we give our patreon followers a lot bonus protection. We’re each keen about historical past; that half’s straightforward for us. The remainder of it’s simply us making an attempt to be humorous with each other. The hope with the podcast is it helps to get our careers to the subsequent degree, and dealing with Comedy Central I hope to convey a Historical past Hyenas associated idea to them as nicely.

The Interrobang: It additionally helps that the podcast is on a platform like the Riotcast Community and backed by anyone like Bobby Kelly. It’s not like you have got to do it in your bed room and hope that somebody finds it.

Chris Distefano: Bobby Kelly put collectively a very good place that provides individuals a superb house to host their podcasts. He has been nice with it, and it’s nice for us as a result of after the podcast we will go downstairs to the Comedy Cellar to do units. You don’t have to fear about the importing or the cameras… we simply do a present and the whole lot else is taken care of.

The Interrobang: You’re additionally going to be on the Impractical Jokers Cruise subsequent month with Nate Bargatze, Dan Soder and Huge Jay Oakerson.

Chris Distefano: I’m wanting ahead to that huge time. I’m prepared to get these bitch tits out and present everyone what I’m working with. Sal Vulcano is certainly one of the greatest individuals I’ve ever met– I’ve by no means met an individual that doesn’t like Sal. He’s a type of guys, that as well-known and profitable as he’s, he’s nonetheless the most down to earth greatest individual. I’ve been going out on the street with Sal and simply had some nice occasions. When he requested me to do the cruise I used to be honored. Some individuals do some loopy cruises they usually come again and say they sucked… however not whenever you’re with Sal, Massive Jay, Dan and the Jokers followers… it doesn’t matter what we’ll all have a great time.

The Interrobang: You’ve spent plenty of time visiting the exhibits over at SiriusXM. Over the previous few years I’ve heard you on Opie & Jim once they had their present, then Jim and Sam and Bennington.

Chris Distefano: To begin with I feel Ron Bennington is one among the greatest radio guys of all time. Anytime I’ve been on his present it simply feels easy, and he’s so good it simply makes you are feeling easy. It’s identical to alley-oop after alley-oop, and Jim and Sam are nice they’ve all the time been good to me. I nonetheless work with Opie as nicely. I do know he and Jim Norton had their public issues, however I nonetheless love them each independently for various causes. I by no means obtained caught in the center of the drama, I take pleasure in working with each of them; and I’m glad they each proceed to have me on their exhibits.

The Interrobang: Do you will have any opinions on the present PC tradition in comedy? Do you assume it’s ever going to swing back- There’s a number of common folks that simply need to chuckle and watch a superb set.

Chris Distefano: Nicely, I really feel typically issues want to change… and typically it has to get annoying for issues to change in a constructive approach. I feel we’re at that time the place they’re annoying now, and a few issues are altering positively. However as a comic, if I’m committing a criminal offense or do one thing that I do know in my coronary heart is incorrect…… I’ll apologize…if not, I’ll by no means apologize for a joke. Ricky Gervais tweeted one thing that principally stated… “if you’re offended by a joke…that’s your problem not mine. It’s the way you’re taking the joke, not the way I’m saying it”. If I do a joke and somebody takes private offense to it, they’ve each proper to do this… they will rise up and stroll out of my present. They will get in contact with me on social media and inform me how offended they have been. I don’t want to reply, and the membership doesn’t want to offer you your a refund… it’s up to them. However it’s 100% their prerogative and their proper to be offended, however I’m not going to say I’m sorry, as a result of I wrote the joke and I stand by it.

I’m not apologizing… I’m not operating for workplace, I’m a comic.

I feel individuals get in hassle once they begin over apologizing, as a result of in actuality it’s a small group of individuals which are getting offended. However actually most individuals simply need to giggle. Inform some household that’s down on their luck due to no matter circumstance, “Hey I wish I could make you bend over laughing… but unfortunately the PC police are here, so I have to give you hack bullshit jokes”. They only need to snicker and overlook about their lives, and that’s the sort of comic I would like to be. You paid cash to come right into a comedy membership, so that you paid cash to cross the line. I’m not apologizing… I’m not operating for workplace, I’m a comic. So look to me and other people like me to make you snigger. If we are saying inappropriate issues that’s why we’re right here; If not the world is simply so boring. We’ll simply develop into a shitty Socialist nation and doubtless get into World Conflict three… which we’ll win, as a result of we’re the back-to-back World Conflict Champs.


Chris’ first hour special- Chris Distefano: Measurement 38 Waist- will premiere as a part of “January Stand up Month” on Comedy Central January 18th, 2019.

Chris’ weekly interstitial Comedy Central collection –Silly Questions with Chris Distefano– can also be prolonged for a brand new batch of episodes. Chris co-stars in the net collection Bay Ridge Boys alongside fellow comedian Yannis Pappas and co-hosts the well-liked historical past podcast Historical past Hyenas (additionally with Pappas), which is obtainable on iTunes and the Riotcast Community.

Chris could be discovered throughout social media platforms @chrisdcomedy.

Learn extra comedy information.

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