PATTON OSWALT: MAYBE TIME IS A FLAT CIRCLE (2014)

PATTON OSWALT: MAYBE TIME IS A FLAT CIRCLE (2014)

CASE STUDY: STANDUP

From 2013-2015, I was in charge of the creative for marketing pretty much all the standup properties on Comedy Central. We had a bunch: From the big name specials featured in Standup Month, to the up and coming comics on the Half Hour, to the after hours comedy of Dave Attell's Comedy Underground, to the non-stop standup party that was Adam Devine's House Party, and then some (standup shows like The Meltdown, This Is Not Happening, and other standup specials throughout the year). Comedy Central wanted to own standup, and to do so we had to work closely with the talent to align our respective brands, create shareable content that could exist over many platforms, and make standup make sense within our newly-redesigned Brandscape.

What I brought to the table was 

  1. The ability to connect with talent and come up with creative concepts perfectly suited to their voices
  2. The vision to find ways to expand upon promo content, giving us some exclusive web/social content
  3. The producing and directing skills to make those concepts work within limited budgets and timeframes

Below are a few of my favorite spots from my work promoting standup on Comedy Central.

STANDUP MONTH 2014

April of 2014 was Standup Month on Comedy Central, which meant that we'd be premiering 6 huge standup specials with big name talent during it. In mid-February 2014 we got word that 5 of the 6 comics with specials wanted to shoot custom promos, and I was brought in to design these six unique campaigns (plus the umbrella campaign linking them all together under the Standup Month banner). It would require shooting 5 different campaigns in two days (one in NYC, one in LA) and pulling together an ungodly amount of on-air and web-specific spots, but I embraced the challenge and steered it in on time, under budget, and with outstanding creative.

Here are a few samples of what we were able to accomplish:

"True Detective" themed web extra we did with Patton Oswalt in March of 2014. We shot it the Tuesday after the season finale of True Detective and released it the following Monday. 200K+ views on YouTube, 125K+ views on cc.com. Covered in the AV Club, Uproxx, Variety, Rolling Stone, and others.

Promo for "My Fake Problems" special, 2014. Shot in the Hollywood Hills as part of Stand Up Month 2014 campaign. We shot ten of these and put a bunch online for David to tweet out to his fans.

Promo for Hannibal Buress' "Live from Chicago" special, 2014. Shot in NYC as part of Stand Up Month 2014 campaign. We also shot a web extra where Hannibal told some amazingly dirty "Street Jokes", but Standards nixed them.

Promo for Jim Gaffigan's "Obsessed" special, 2014. Shot in NYC as part of Stand Up Month 2014 campaign. We also shot a 2:00 web extra where Jim ate four whole donuts while talking. It was very impressive and oddly hypnotic to watch.

Promo for Tracy Morgan's "Live In Brooklyn" special, 2014. Shot in NYC as part of Stand Up Month 2014 campaign. Tracy was awesome to work with. He insisted on memorizing his lines (rather than using cue cards) because on SNL, if you didn't know your lines and the cue card guy dropped the cards, "your career was over".

OTHER STANDUP HIGHLIGHTS

Promo for Whitney Cummings' special "I Love You", shot in 2014 in LA with Producer Lisa Goldman. We kept on hearing from trend forecasters that mermaids were poised to become the next vampires, and we wanted to get in on that but on a budget (hence the inflatable kiddie pool).

Promo for Artie Lange's standup special "The Stench of Failure". Filmed for crazy cheap in Hoboken, NJ. Despite shooting without sound, we were also able to make a series of silent films starring Artie for the web while we shot this.

When we shot our promos for Artie Lange's "Stench of Failure" special, the budget was so limited that we didn't have a sound operator. We were told the night before the shoot that it was confirmed we wouldn't have to pay extra to background actors if we did some web-only material, so we quickly put together a silent film shoot idea, with Artie as a kind of modern-day Fatty Arbuckle. This was my favorite of the 8 spots we did, and it was okayed by standards, but deemed "too risky" by Comedy Central executives. That's my voice as the VO, by the way.

Another silent movie with Artie shot as an additional web extra for no money. This one features Riley Costello as "the kid".