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The 15 Funniest Celebrity Cameos in Music Videos

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Directors have long used videos to play around and experiment, and it’s not surprising that celebrities want to get in on that action as well. Before you catch Carly Rae Jepsen on this week’s all-new Comedy Bang! Bang!, check out 15 videos where famous people took the opportunity to get loose for laughs.

15. Anne Hathaway, Kristen Stewart and Brie Larson in Jenny Lewis’ “Just One of the Guys”

Hathaway, K-Stew, and recent Comedy Bang! Bang! guest Brie Larson spoof dudes in former Rilo Kiley member Jenny Lewis’ video for “Just One of the Guys.” How is this line-up not in that terrible looking Jem movie?


14. Dan Aykroyd, Malcolm Jamal Warner, Whoopi Goldberg and pretty much every ’80s star in Michael Jackson’s “Liberian Girl”

At the height of his ’80s Bad-era fame, Michael Jackson called in some favors for a celeb-studded video that he barely appears in. It’s basically every star you loved during the ’80s hanging out on a set and it is glorious.


13. Sacha Baron Cohen in Madonna’s “Music”

Before he broke big in the U.S., Borat star played his Ali G character in this 2000 Madonna video. Naturally he makes a joke about her “babylons.” Wait, does this mean that Madonna was hip to Ali G before we were??


12. Seth Rogen, Danny McBride, Elijah Wood, Will Ferrell and many more in Beastie Boys’ “Make Some Noise”

Rogen, McBride and Wood channel old-school Beasties in what is sadly looking to be group’s music video swan song.


11. Ben Stiller in P. Diddy’s “Bad Boy for Life” and Jack Johnson’s “Taylor”

Stiller turns up in a funny cameo as Diddy’s uptight neighbor in this classic hip hop video.

Meanwhile, Stiller’s appearance in beach bum folkie Jack Johnson’s “Taylor” video fails into the oft-repeated music video trope of “famous person directs music video and causes mischief in the process.”


10. Zach Galifianakis in Kanye West’s “Can’t Tell Me Nothin” and Fiona Apple’s “Not About Love”

Say what you will about Kanye West, he knows talent when he sees it. So when the time came to make a video for the lead track off of Graduation, West went to a very unexpected place: the farm of beardo comedian Zach Galifianakis, who had impressed Kanye at a Los Angeles stand-up show. The resultant video, which also stars folkie Will Oldham, is a balls-out exercise in surreal comedy.

A couple years before the “Can’t Tell Me Nothin'” video, Galifianakis did the lip-sync thing in Fiona Apple’s “Not About Love.” Did Kanye steal from Fiona??


9. Chevy Chase in Paul Simon’s “You Can Call Me Al”

This might be the original celebrity music video cameo, as Paul Simon brings in Chevy Chase (fresh off of Three Amigos) to lip-synch all of his lyrics in a Pepto-Bismol pink room. Chase’s exaggerated mugging and horrible faux-trumpet playing seem to perplex Simon, who keeps himself busy by providing the instrumentation for the track.


8. Tony McHale in Lady Antebellum’s “Bartender”

The video for Lady Antebellum’s 2014 track also features Kate Upton, but really what form of media that year didn’t? No, this video gets our nod for featuring Arrested Development and Veep star Tony Hale as a bartender with some incredible ideas for how to get you plastered.


7. Michael Cera in Islands’ “No You Don’t”

This track from Montreal indie-rockers Islands is all about bad comedowns. The video casts America’s quirkiest quirk-ster Michael Cera as a young fellow who pops some pills and goes on a journey to the center of his mind courtesy of some gloriously cheesy ’80s special effects.


6. Justin Timberlake in Elton John’s “This Train Don’t Stop There Anymore”

It’s not uncommon to see Justin Timberlake in music videos – he was a member of *NSYNC, after all – but his role in Elton John’s clip for “This Train Don’t Stop There Anymore” from 2001 is one of a kind. Justin plays a ’70s-era Elton, dressed as flamboyantly as you’d expect, and there’s a double shot of cameo juice as Paul “Pee-wee Herman” Reubens plays John’s manager John Reid.


5. Jack McBrayer in Mariah Carey’s “Touch My Body”

Pairing the pop goddess Mariah Carey with Kenneth the Page from 30 Rock was a touch of inspired genius. The lead single from Carey’s 2008 album was overflowing with sexuality, so director Brett Ratner tweaked the concept by casting McBrayer as a Geek Squad-esque tech who gets overcome with Mariah’s mojo on a house call.


4. Jason Sudekis, Ed Helms, Will Forte and Jason Bateman in Mumford & Sons’ “Hopeless Wanderer”

Insufferably twee British band Mumford & Sons earned at least a few cool points by tapping a quartet of very funny guys to impersonate them for the “Hopeless Wanderer” video. The guys do a remarkably inept job actually looking like they can play instruments, but it doesn’t matter that much in the long run. Best thing with the name Mumford & Sons attached to it.


3. Jake Gyllenhaal in Vampire Weekend’s “Giving Up The Gun”

The Wes Anderson-esque clip for this track from the second Vampire Weekend album takes place at a bizarre tennis tournament where a young woman coached by Wu-Tang mastermind RZA must face off against a samurai, Joe Jonas and Gyllenhaal. It’s definitely a strange one.


2. Tom Hanks in Carly Rae Jepsen’s “I Really Like You”

Carly Rae Jepsen is such a sweetheart that it’s not a surprise that she could shanghai one of America’s best-loved actors for a video. Tom Hanks shows up in the clip for “I Really Like You” lip-synching the tune before getting into a dance number with Jepsen in the streets of New York. It’s an unconventional appearance but one that works very well.


1. Christopher Walken in Fatboy Slim’s “Weapon Of Choice”

Electronic music really opens the doors for video directors to get crazy, because there’s no “band” to show in the video. Spike Jonze directed the 2001 video for English big beat producer Fatboy Slim and had the genius idea to cast legendary character actor Christopher Walken as a businessman dancing through the lobby of the Los Angeles Marriott.

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Hacked In

Funny or Die Is Taking Over

FOD TV comes to IFC every Saturday night.

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We’ve been fans of Funny or Die since we first met The Landlord. That enduring love makes it more than logical, then, that IFC is totally cool with FOD hijacking the airwaves every Saturday night. Yes, that’s happening.

The appropriately titled FOD TV looks like something pulled from public access television in the nineties. Like lo-fi broken-antenna reception and warped VHS tapes. Equal parts WTF and UHF.

Get ready for characters including The Shirtless Painter, Long-Haired Businessmen, and Pigeon Man. They’re aptly named, but for a better sense of what’s in store, here’s a taste of ASMR with Kelly Whispers:

Watch FOD TV every Saturday night during IFC’s regularly scheduled movies.

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Wicked Good

See More Evil

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is on Hulu.

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Okay, so you missed the entire first season of Stan Against Evil. There’s no shame in that, per se. But here’s the thing: Season 2 is just around the corner and you don’t want to lag behind. After all, Season 1 had some critical character development, not to mention countless plot twists, and a breathless finale cliffhanger that’s been begging for resolution since last fall. It also had this:

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The good news is that you can catch up right now on Hulu. Phew. But if you aren’t streaming yet, here’s a basic primer…

Willards Mill Is Evil

Stan spent his whole career as sheriff oblivious to the fact that his town has a nasty curse. Mostly because his recently-deceased wife was secretly killing demons and keeping Stan alive.

Demons Really Want To Kill Stan

The curse on Willards Mill stipulates that damned souls must hunt and kill each and every town sheriff, or “constable.” Oh, and these demons are shockingly creative.

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They Also Want To Kill Evie

Why? Because Evie’s a sheriff too, and the curse on Willard’s Mill doesn’t have a “one at a time” clause. Bummer, Evie.

Stan and Evie Must Work Together

Beating the curse will take two, baby, but that’s easier said than done because Stan doesn’t always seem to give a damn. Damn!

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Beware of Goats

It goes without saying for anyone who’s seen the show: If you know that ancient evil wants to kill you, be wary of anything that has cloven feet.

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Season 2 Is Lurking

Scary new things are slouching towards Willards Mill. An impending darkness descending on Stan, Evie and their cohort – eviler evil, more demony demons, and whatnot. And if Stan wants to survive, he’ll have to get even Stanlier.

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is now streaming right now on Hulu.

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SO EXCITED!!!

Reminders that the ’90s were a thing

"The Place We Live" is available for a Jessie Spano-level binge on Comedy Crib.

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Unless you stopped paying attention to the world at large in 1989, you are of course aware that the ’90s are having their pop cultural second coming. Nobody is more acutely aware of this than Dara Katz and Betsy Kenney, two comedians who met doing improv comedy and have just made their Comedy Crib debut with the hilarious ’90s TV throwback series, The Place We Live.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Dara: It’s everything you loved–or loved to hate—from Melrose Place and 90210 but condensed to five minutes, funny (on purpose) and totally absurd.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Betsy: “Hey Todd, why don’t you have a sip of water. Also, I think you’ll love The Place We Live because everyone has issues…just like you, Todd.”

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IFC: When you were living through the ’90s, did you think it was television’s golden age or the pop culture apocalypse?


Betsy: I wasn’t sure I knew what it was, I just knew I loved it!


Dara: Same. Was just happy that my parents let me watch. But looking back, the ’90s honored The Teen. And for that, it’s the golden age of pop culture. 

IFC: Which ’90s shows did you mine for the series, and why?

Betsy: Melrose and 90210 for the most part. If you watch an episode of either of those shows you’ll see they’re a comedic gold mine. In one single episode, they cover serious crimes, drug problems, sex and working in a law firm and/or gallery, all while being young, hot and skinny.


Dara: And almost any series we were watching in the ’90s, Full House, Saved By the Bell, My So Called Life has very similar themes, archetypes and really stupid-intense drama. We took from a lot of places. 

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IFC: How would you describe each of the show’s characters in terms of their ’90s TV stereotype?

Dara: Autumn (Sunita Mani) is the femme fatale. Robin (Dara Katz) is the book worm (because she wears glasses). Candace (Betsy Kenney) is Corey’s twin and gives great advice and has really great hair. Corey (Casey Jost) is the boy next door/popular guy. Candace and Corey’s parents decided to live in a car so the gang can live in their house. 
Lee (Jonathan Braylock) is the jock.

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

Dara: Because everyone’s feeling major ’90s nostalgia right now, and this is that, on steroids while also being a totally new, silly thing.

Delight in the whole season of The Place We Live right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. It’ll take you back in all the right ways.