Photo Credit: Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic
In 2007, comedians Will Ferrell and Adam McKay launched Funny or Die, a comedy video website. Their first video, The Landlord -- you may remember its expletive-spouting 2-year-old, Pearl (McKay's daughter), who chewed out Ferrell over late rent payments -- was a viral sensation that year.
"Our idea in going into Funny or Die was that it would be a clubhouse for us and our friends," said McKay. It was "to try stuff that we couldn't do as easily in movies or TV." And now, executive producers Ferrell, McKay and Chris Henchy (that's right, Brooke Shields' husband) are bringing the zany clubhouse to…TV.
The new HBO comedy series, Funny or Die Presents (premiering Friday, Feb. 19 at 12 a.m. ET), is based on the envelope-pushing comedy fans flock to the site for. The jokes are wide-ranging and take many different forms -- from sketches to music videos to animated segments. (And yes, there's a potty-mouthed kid in the trailer.) The series will also feature lots of big name comedians, including David Spade, Don Cheadle, Fred Willard, John C. Reilly, Ed Helms and Tim Meadows.
Another factor to consider: on the Funny or Die site, visitors vote on the videos. If the majority of viewers are tickled by a video, it stays. If not, the video "dies" and gets sent to a section called "the crypt." On HBO, you get what you get. But of course, if you don't like any of the ten half-hour episodes, you can make them die. Just turn off your TV.
Do you think that Funny or Die Presents will give SNL a run for its money?