Connect with us

Movies

UTA’s Nick Nuciforo Surveys a Resurgent Live Comedy Scene

Published

on

As our driver approaches the Wiltern Theatre from a jam-packed stretch of Wilshire Boulevard, Nick Nuciforo, partner and head of comedy touring at UTA, keeps his eyes locked on the line snaking out from the theater’s front entrance. It’s an early May evening, cool and breezy, and the marquee pulsates with electric blue and red. The words “Netflix Is a Joke: The Festival” stretch wide across the sign, with “Chelsea Handler,” the night’s sold-out act, in black lettering.    

“I want to see what’s happening out in front of the venue,” says Nuciforo, craning his neck as we inch down a side street. “I want to see, is there a line? Is the line moving? How backed up is it? I start to think about what’s happening at the venue. I observe who’s in the line because I want to better understand the consumer. We have a lot of tools that we use at the agency to get a proper understanding of who the fans are — through data and analytics and metrics. But what I’m really looking at is the fans. It helps me to understand who they are and how to reach them.”    

Nuciforo got his start as a booking agent in 1996, cutting his teeth at Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Irvin Arthur Associates and then APA, steering the agency’s comedy touring department, where he launched the careers of such comedians as Lewis Black and Larry the Cable Guy. Prior to joining UTA, Nuciforo headed CAA’s comedy touring division. A seasoned pro of the stand-up circuit, Nuciforo reps a hefty roster of superstar talent including Handler, Whitney Cummings, Will Ferrell, Sarah Silverman, Sebastian Maniscalco, Seth Meyers and Ali Wong. He also reps a bevy of experimental comics and podcasters such as Crime Junkie and Tiny Meat Gang Live. 

“It’s a complicated time for touring, but an exciting one,” he says. “The clients are excited to be out touring. Fans are excited to be out and together. So many people were locked in their homes for so long in quarantine and there was the inability to have shows for such a long time.” 

On this particular night, Nuciforo will crisscross town, shuttling between Handler’s sets — the Los Angeles stop on her nationwide Vaccinated and Horny Tour — and client Bert Kreischer’s show at the Greek. Plus, he will make stops at various other clients’ performances.    

“I’m out on the road a lot,” says Nuciforo. “I don’t go to all the shows. I try and pick and choose when and where, but I like to see clients with enough frequency to be aware of what material they are doing on stage. I like to choose locations of some importance — either it’s a meaningful night because they’re playing some special venue or it’s a special event. Sometimes it’s when I need to sit with an artist, go over some planning. It might be that buyers are coming to the show. It could be an odd, quirky location. Basically, I’m there to just make sure that everything is going OK.    

“It’s not my thing to shuffle in and shuffle out,” he continues. “If I’m there, it’s all about seeing the client, seeing what they’re doing on stage. That’s their art. It is my job to know what they’re doing so that I know how to give them advice and guide their careers.”    

We enter the Wiltern through its backdoor entrance and scale a flight of stairs amidst a flurry of pre-show activity: technicians and stagehands, the quiet snap of clipboards. Minutes later, we arrive at Handler’s dressing room. In a denim jumpsuit and sneakers, the comedian is the epitome of pre-show cool, checking her make-up in the mirror while recalling the time she “kidnapped” Nuciforo to the Bahamas.     

“Remember that boat?” Handler asks him. “This wasn’t the first time we met, but this was the first time we went on vacation together. We were doing Radio City Music Hall — and this was many moons ago — and I was doing three nights there. And right before we decided to get a boat in the Bahamas. It was like that show …”    

“‘Below Deck,’” says Nuciforo.    

“Yeah, so this was above deck,” Handler quips. “It was way above deck. This was a yacht. I remember watching Nick get on a jet ski and drive away from the boat like he was just driving into heaven. We all just sat on the deck of the boat looking at him. And I was like, God, I feel like this might be the best day of Nick’s life. This was before he was married and had children.”    

Comedians are notorious for being mercurial, thriving on public adulation. Nuciforo is a foil — soft-spoken and measured, a steady branch resistant to the roughest of winds.    

“I’m not the funniest guy in the room,” he admits.     

But funny is not what top-tier comic talent needs. What they need, notes Handler, is someone who “believes in their ability
to create.”

 “It feels very good to have an agent that I’ve known for such a long time,” she says, readying to go on stage. “And that goes a long way in this industry, because everything is ephemeral. A lot of relationships don’t last forever.”    

Thirty minutes later, we are backstage at the Greek with Kreischer. Reclining in his dressing room chair, the comic, nicknamed “The Machine,” cuts a Falstaffian figure, an assortment of beverages and miscellany — hot tea, iced coffee, an asthma inhaler — on a table near him.

“I’m not the party animal everyone thinks,” says Kreischer. “I just had an IV drip — vitamin B, magnesium, vitamin C, vitamin D. I also just ate an entire honeycomb. I haven’t had one since I was a kid, but I saw one and went, oh, shit, I want a honeycomb. So, I just murdered a honeycomb.”    

Tonight’s show at the Greek is a “special” one, he continues.    

“Not to slam on any city, but if you’re doing the Egg in Albany, you’re not going to get yourself up for it. But if you’re doing the Greek or Red Rocks or an arena in Cleveland or Tallahassee, it’s cool because you’re not nervous — but everything’s fun. You get big charcuterie boards, you get a Glutathione Plus, you get a coffee and an asthma inhaler. You get a big party after the show.” 

“This all started during the pandemic,” notes Nuciforo of Kreischer’s rise to fame. “The drive-in movie theater tour and performing outside—this is a continuation of Red Rocks and this performing outside which is now evolving into Fully Loaded [Comedy] Festival, which I would say is a comedic lifestyle, with multiple comedians built around Bert and Bert’s brand — Fully Loaded.”    

The energy at the Greek is electric, the crowd — a large majority of them male and 40-something — buzzing in a post-pandemic excitement. From a VIP box seat, Nuciforo watches Kreischer’s set with rapt attention. The comedian kills, the audience reacting to almost every joke with raucous, throaty laughter. Nuciforo smiles, visibly pleased.

“I can’t remember a time when a client that I’ve worked with has ever bombed,” he says, filing out of the Greek. It’s time to return to the Wiltern for Handler’s second show. It’s nearing 10 p.m. — 10 minutes after Handler’s scheduled start time. In the world of a high-powered comedy agent, the night is still young.   

“I think that comedy is bigger than it’s ever been,” Nuciforo says. “And I think there’s an awareness of comedians and people following comedians and who are excited about comedians and wanting to go see live shows and consume it. Podcast listenership is up higher than it’s ever been, particularly in the space of comedy. Special viewership on whatever platform it’s on is at an all-time high. There’s this straight audio consumption of comedy through Pandora or Spotify or Sirius XM or whatever means. YouTube has been a very powerful tool for comedians to get their work out into the marketplace. I mean, this is the democratization of content that right now. It’s a great moment.”



Read the full article here

Bobby focuses on creating higher margins while investing in society. He believes that our World has room for improvement, and one of his goals is to be part of the evolutionary process. What makes him successful is the collaboration with founders and partners. Bobby has a successful track record in envisioning and creating deals and opportunities from scratch in various industries.

Movies

Jamie Foxx Recalls Almost Spoiling No Way Home’s 3 Spider-Man Reveal

Published

on

Jamie Foxx opens up about almost spoiling Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s return for Marvel Studios and Sony’s Spider-Man: No Way Home.

Jamie Foxx opens up about almost spoiling Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s return in Spider-Man: No Way Home. Directed by Jon Watts, Tom Holland’s third standalone film as the web-slinger released in December 2022 and became a massive critical and commercial hit. Spider-Man: No Way Home has since been widely praised for its strong performances, as well as its surprising emotional ending, which saw Holland’s Peter Parker forgotten by everyone he loves.

SCREENRANT VIDEO OF THE DAY

Aside from wrapping up Peter Parker’s first MCU trilogy, Spider-Man: No Way Home also functioned as the culmination of all Spider-Man movies. Despite vehement denials from people involved, the threequel ultimately featured the return of Maguire and Garfield as they reprised their respective versions of the wall-crawlers. Some of their movies’ notable villains were also brought in, including Foxx’s Electro. On the heels of reports about Maguire and Garfield’s returning Spider-Men breaking out, the actor took to his official social media and posted fan art that depicted his Marvel bad guy looming over the three live-action versions of Spider-Man. Many took this as Foxx confirming Spider-Man: No Way Home‘s surprise cameos ahead of time.


Almost eight months after Spider-Man: No Way Home‘s release, Foxx opens up about this snafu in a new interview with CinemaBlend. Calling the experience of filming the movie “a rock concert,” the actor went on to address nearly blowing the surprise. Not thinking that Maguire and Garfield’s returns were meant to be secret, Foxx also almost snapped a picture of the Spider-Man trio before being chastised by someone on set. Read Foxx’s story below:

It was crazy. It was like a- it was like a rock concert, when we did that film. And I thought Sony did a fantastic job of mystique. You know what I’m saying? Holding things, keeping things – you know, I kind of almost blew it. … As soon as I got on the set and there was all three Spider-Mans, I was like this (picks up cell phone). ’Oh, we up in here, baby, ‘bout to go live…’ And somebody just dove on me like I was a fire. I was like, ‘What the hell?’ ‘Shh! No one’s supposed to know.’ ‘Okay, my bad. Okay, we ain’t supposed to know that all three of them are here!’ But I think they did a great job in doing that, bringing some mystique. And I think that that’s what was needed to get people back in the theater.

Of course, Foxx’s actions would likely not have changed much, as Maguire and Garfield’s return in Spider-Man: No Way Home was an open secret in Hollywood for months. Once it was confirmed that the threequel would be tied to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and tackle a multiversal story, and feature Alfred Molina’s Doc Ock, it was largely expected that other characters from previous Spider-Man films would be appearing. The casting report about Foxx’s reprisal of Electro further solidified this idea, so even if the actor didn’t post his near-spoiler image, most of the fanbase was already convinced that Maguire and Garfield would be joining Holland in Spider-Man: No Way Home.


Despite the persistent rumors, Sony and Marvel Studios opted to save Spider-Man: No Way Home‘s biggest surprise for the film itself. Even amid trailer gaffes that implied Maguire and Garfield had been cut out with VFX, the secrecy was maintained. In fact, MCU architect Kevin Feige even warned the public that having preconceived assumptions based on rumors could ruin their movie-going experience. In the end, however, Foxx’s social media post would have been spot on, and all three Spider-Man joining forces proved a major nostalgic highlight for audiences. Clearly, even the villain actors themselves knew they were part of something special, and were very eager to share it.


Source: CinemaBlend

Key Release Dates

Read the full article here

Continue Reading

Movies

Megan Mullally Gets Uncomfortably Real About Her Daughter in ‘Summering’ Sneak Peek (Exclusive)

Published

on

Megan Mullally isn’t afraid to get candid in the upcoming film, Summering.

Directed by James Ponsoldt, the movie takes place in the final days of summer and centers on four best friends — Daisy, Lola, Mari and Dina — who will soon be splitting up when they start middle school. When deciding how to spend their final summer weekend together, they come across a mystery that leads them on a life-changing adventure. The friends make a series of discoveries that are as much about solving the mystery as they are about learning the hard truths of growing up — all while their mothers desperately seek their safe return.

ET exclusively premieres a sneak peek from the film, which opens in theaters Friday, with the mothers — played by Mullally, Lake Bell, Ashley Madewke and Sarah Cooper — all huddled together in a living room as they try to find out what happened to their kids and what kind of shenanigans they may have gotten themselves into, especially after they discover they may have been last spotted at a bar.

While some are busy on the phone trying to get information, the others can’t help but reminisce about their rebellious youthful days. But Mullally’s Stacie is hard-pressed to believe that her daughter, Mari (Eden Grace Redfield), would ever cross that line.

“Mari’s kind of a prude. She gets mad at me when I swear. She walks out of the bathroom when I pee in front of her,” Stacie reveals to her stunned friends. When they ask her to repeat that again, Stacie tries to clarify, hoping to make it seem less of a thing. “Well, not every day…,” Stacie replies, her voice trailing off as she studies her friends’ bewildered expressions as they digest the information.

Written by Ponsoldt and Benjamin Percy, Summering also stars Lia Barnett, Madalen Mills and Sanai Victoria.

Summering opens in theaters Friday.

Read the full article here

Continue Reading

Movies

‘Triangle of Sadness’ Trailer: Try and Stomach the Gross-Out Satire That Won Cannes and Shocked Viewers

Published

on

The first trailer for Ruben Östlund’s “Triangle of Sadness” is now online to watch, if you can stomach it. The satirical dark comedy won the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year. Östlund, who first broke out with his comedy “Force Majeur,” now has two Palme d’Or wins under his belt thanks to “Triangle of Sadness” and his 2017 satire “The Square.” The new film marks Östlund’s first English-language feature.

“Triangle of Sadness” stars “Beach Rats” and “The Kingsman” actor Harris Dickinson as an aspiring model who gets the chance to vacation aboard a luxury yacht after his influencer girlfriend wins them a free trip. Woody Harrelson plays the yacht’s alcoholic captain. The yacht is full of pretentious and snobby guests who make up the 1%, but they all get their comeuppance when the trip takes a dark turn.

At the Cannes Film Festival in May, “Triangle of Sadness” shocked audiences and caused some walkouts thanks to one 15-minute scene in which vomiting and defecation are displayed in all their graphic details. Neon, who picked up the film for distribution out of Cannes, is fully leaning into the film’s gross-out factor, as the movie’s poster features one of the character’s vomiting out gold puke.

Variety‘s Peter Debruge gave “Triangle of Sadness” a strong review out of Cannes, writing, “There’s a meticulous precision to the way he constructs, blocks and executes scenes — a kind of agonizing unease, amplified by awkward silences or an unwelcome fly buzzing between characters struggling to communicate.”

“Triangle of Sadness” joins “Titane” and Oscar winner “Parasite” in being the third consecutive Palme d’Or winner that Neon has released. The film will be making its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival next month.

Neon will release “Triangle of Sadness” in theaters this fall. Watch the trailer in the  video below.



Read the full article here

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Newsletter

Subscribe to our newsletter to get the latest news directly to your inbox.


Trending