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Bill Hader – Fred Armisen – Photo Credit: Tyler Golden/IFC.

Let's Get Physical

10 Modern Masters of Physical Comedy

Celebrate America with a Three Stooges marathon July 4th starting at 6AM on IFC.

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In honor of America and our love of pratfalls, IFC is hosting a July 4th Three Stooges marathon. The three slapstick buffoons started a revolution of physical comedy, leading to some of the funniest characters in cinematic and television history. This Independence Day, pay tribute to the recent slapstick stars that made comedy visually hilarious.

10. Steve Carell

Steve Carell
NBC Universal

Steve Carell’s Michael Scott is known for always saying the wrong thing, but he is also known for his hilariously awful impersonations and dance moves. While a lot of Carell’s best moments as Scott are ridiculous one-liners (“Do you think doing alcohol is cool?”), moments such as kissing Oscar and being “Prison Mike” are feats of physical comedic greatness.


9. Tina Fey

Tina Fey
NBC Universal

Tina Fey’s Liz Lemon has a way with both hilarious zingers and slapstick goddess. A notable moment for Lemon was when she pretended to be a crazy old lady on the subway so no one would talk to her. Wherever Lemon is, we want to go to there.


8. Will Ferrell

Old School
DreamWorks

There are a lot of Will Ferrell films that exhibit his funny physical side, but Old School is the one that showed the world he was up for anything.


7. Jim Carrey

Liar Liar
Universal

Carrey is similar to Ferrell in that any number of his movies portray his comedic slapstick (we had a hard time not putting The Cable Guy on the list). Liar, Liar is still one of his finest moments because for most of the entire movie, Carrey is in physical comedy haven. His slips and falls are all so painfully hysterical because of the sordid torture of having to tell the truth… all of the time.


6. Amy Schumer

Amy Schumer
Universal

Amy Schumer for many years was known for her raunchy stand-up and television show, but her film Trainwreck was a perfect combination of insightful witticisms and over-the-top vulgarness. The scene in particular that proves her physical comedy chops is the horrifyingly hilarious almost-sex scene with the intern — Schumer’s character Amy is hilarious in the midst of being drunk, horny, and horrified.


5. Bill Hader

IFC
IFC

Between SNL and his brilliant performances on Documentary Now!, it’s hard to choose just one moment from this master of physical comedy. But Little Vivvy from “Sandy Passage” is delicately hilarious in her small nuances, such as fidgeting with her sweatpant headdress and musing over memories while putting her fingers to her chin. Hader is also hysterical in a much bigger way as well, such as in Vivvy’s patriotic dance routine, the non-scripted fall through the ceiling and, of course, the terrifying murderous leap to the camera. Comedy’s never been so unnerving.


4. Melissa McCarthy

Bridesmaids
Universal Studios

Speaking of unnerving, while Melissa McCarthy’s Megan Price in Bridesmaids was a scene-stealer with crude lines, her greatest strength in the film was her ballsy physical comedic performance. The most notable and disgusting scene will forever be haunting due to McCarthy’s painful screams and hilariously red face after the gang gets food poisoning. We’ll never go to a Brazilian steak restaurant before a fitting, that’s for sure.


3. Michael Richards

Sony
Sony Pictures Television

Is there any other character in the history of television that has a more memorable entrance than Kramer? Richards seemed like he wasn’t even trying as Cosmo Kramer, and for that his physical comedy was flawless. Every entrance into Jerry’s apartment was jarring but giggle-inducing. Bigger storylines also played to Richard’s physical comedic strengths, such as when Kramer sets up the hot tub in his apartment. When the hot tub goes cold, Richard’s shivering Kramer causes tear-inducing laughter. “Giddy up!”


2. Steve Martin

Universal
Universal Studios

Steve Martin is a force of all different kinds of comedy, from silly songs, stand-up and films. The silliest of which, for sure, being The Jerk. Martin’s slapstick carries the movie, the finest scene being when he is shot at while working at the gas station. “He hates these cans!”


1. John Belushi

The top of the list has to be the one and only John Belushi for his go-for-broke performances on SNL and as Bluto in Animal House. The man hardly has any lines but steals the entire show. From chugging a fifth of Jack to smashing a guitar (“Sorry.”) to vivaciously dancing in a toga to giving a passionate, yet historically incorrect, speech, each and every scene was a gem. The masterpiece, however, was the famed cafeteria scene, used by siblings to torture one another for decades to come. “I’m a zit! Get it?”

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…

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IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.

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IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).

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IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.

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IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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Reality? Check.

Baroness For Life

Baroness von Sketch Show is available for immediate consumption.

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GIFs via Giphy

Baroness von Sketch Show is snowballing as people have taken note of its subtle and not-so-subtle skewering of everyday life. The New York Times, W Magazine, and Vogue have heaped on the praise, but IFC had a few more probing questions…

IFC: To varying degrees, your sketches are simply scripted examples of things that actually happen. What makes real life so messed up?

Aurora: Hubris, Ego and Selfish Desires and lack of empathy.

Carolyn: That we’re trapped together in the 3rd Dimension.

Jenn: 1. Other people 2. Other people’s problems 3. Probably something I did.

IFC: A lot of people I know have watched this show and realized, “Dear god, that’s me.” or “Dear god, that’s true.” Why do people have their blinders on?

Aurora: Because most people when you’re in the middle of a situation, you don’t have the perspective to step back and see yourself because you’re caught up in the moment. That’s the job of comedians is to step back and have a self-awareness about these things, not only saying “You’re doing this,” but also, “You’re not the only one doing this.” It’s a delicate balance of making people feel uncomfortable and comforting them at the same time.

via GIPHY

IFC: Unlike a lot of popular sketch comedy, your sketches often focus more on group dynamics vs iconic individual characters. Why do you think that is and why is it important?

Meredith: We consider the show to be more based around human dynamics, not so much characters. If anything we’re more attracted to the energy created by people interacting.

Jenn: So much of life is spent trying to work it out with other people, whether it’s at work, at home, trying to commute to work, or even on Facebook it’s pretty hard to escape the group.

IFC: Are there any comedians out there that you feel are just nailing it?

Aurora: I love Key and Peele. I know that their show is done and I’m in denial about it, but they are amazing because there were many times that I would imagine that Keegan Michael Key was in the scene while writing. If I could picture him saying it, I knew it would work. I also kind of have a crush on Jordan Peele and his performance in Big Mouth. Maya Rudolph also just makes everything amazing. Her puberty demon on Big Mouth is flawless. She did an ad for 7th generation tampons that my son, my husband and myself were singing around the house for weeks. If I could even get anything close to her career, I would be happy. I’m also back in love with Rick and Morty. I don’t know if I have a crush on Justin Roiland, I just really love Rick (maybe even more than Morty). I don’t have a crush on Jerry, the dad, but I have a crush on Chris Parnell because he’s so good at being Jerry.

Jenn: I LOVE ISSA RAE!

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IFC: If you could go back in time and cast yourselves in any sitcom, which would it be and how would it change?

Carolyn: I’d go back in time and cast us in The Partridge Family.  We’d make an excellent family band. We’d have a laugh, break into song and wear ruffled blouses with velvet jackets.  And of course travel to all our gigs on a Mondrian bus. I feel really confident about this choice.

Meredith: Electric Mayhem from The Muppet Show. It wouldn’t change, they were simply perfect, except… maybe a few more vaginas in the band.

Binge the entire first and second seasons of Baroness von Sketch Show now on IFC.com and the IFC app.

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G.I. Jeez

Stomach Bugs and Prom Dates

E.Coli High is in your gut and on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Brothers-in-law Kevin Barker and Ben Miller have just made the mother of all Comedy Crib series, in the sense that their Comedy Crib series is a big deal and features a hot mom. Animated, funny, and full of horrible bacteria, the series juxtaposes timeless teen dilemmas and gut-busting GI infections to create a bite-sized narrative that’s both sketchy and captivating. The two sat down, possibly in the same house, to answer some questions for us about the series. Let’s dig in….

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IFC: How would you describe E.Coli High to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

BEN: Hi ummm uhh hi ok well its like umm (gets really nervous and blows it)…

KB: It’s like the Super Bowl meets the Oscars.

IFC: How would you describe E.Coli High to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

BEN: Oh wow, she’s really cute isn’t she? I’d definitely blow that too.

KB: It’s a cartoon that is happening inside your stomach RIGHT NOW, that’s why you feel like you need to throw up.

IFC: What was the genesis of E.Coli High?

KB: I had the idea for years, and when Ben (my brother-in-law, who is a special needs teacher in Philly) began drawing hilarious comics, I recruited him to design characters, animate the series, and do some writing. I’m glad I did, because Ben rules!

BEN: Kevin told me about it in a park and I was like yeah that’s a pretty good idea, but I was just being nice. I thought it was dumb at the time.

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IFC: What makes going to proms and dating moms such timeless and oddly-relatable subject matter?

BEN: Since the dawn of time everyone has had at least one friend with a hot mom. It is physically impossible to not at least make a comment about that hot mom.

KB: Who among us hasn’t dated their friend’s mom and levitated tables at a prom?

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

BEN: There’s a lot of content now. I don’t think anyone will even notice, but it’d be cool if they did.

KB: A show about talking food poisoning bacteria is basically the same as just watching the news these days TBH.

Watch E.Coli High below and discover more NYTVF selections from years past on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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