NBC'S HIT LAUGHFEST 'LAST COMIC STANDING' ANNOUNCES NEW HOST BILL BELLAMY AND NEW TALENT SCOUTS ALONZO BODDEN, ANT AND KATHLEEN MADIGAN AS THE EMMY-NOMINATED SERIES EXPANDS ITS SEARCH INTERNATIONALLY TO FIND THE FUNNIEST COMEDIAN IN THE WORLD
Casting Calls To Be Held in London, Montreal and Sydney, Australia in Addition to Los Angeles, New York, Minneapolis, San Antonio and Tempe
BURBANK � February 1, 2007 - NBC's unscripted laughfest "Last Comic Standing" will return to the schedule this summer with new host Bill Bellamy, new talent scouts including "Last Comic Standing" alumni Alonzo Bodden, Ant and Kathleen Madigan -- and an all new quest -- to find the funniest new comedian in the world. The Emmy-nominated series broadens its scope this season by searching internationally for the world's funniest comedian, holding casting calls in London, Montreal and Sydney, Australia in addition to Los Angeles, New York, Minneapolis, San Antonio and Tempe. Celebrity judges will also join the talent scouts as they search for the world's funniest new comic.
The fourth season of "Last Comic Standing" ranked as the #4 summer series overall in adults 18-49, with every telecast ranking in that week's top seven in adults 18-49. The fourth season averaged a 3.6 rating, 10 share in adults 18-49 and 8.1 million viewers overall.
A favorite in the world of comedy over the last decade, comedian and actor Bill Bellamy recently released his debut comedy DVD, "Bill Bellamy: Back to My Roots," which aired as a one-hour special on Comedy Central. He headlined the new season of "Def Comedy Jam," and starred in the romantic television comedy "Getting Played," the drama series "Fastlane," and in the sitcom "Men, Women & Dogs." On the big screen, his credits include "Any Given Sunday," with Al Pacino; "Love Stinks," "Love Jones," "How to be a Player," and most recently, "Neverwas" with Jessica Lange and William Hurt. He was also the voice of Skeeter in Nickelodeon's comedy series "Cousin Skeeter," and hosted "MTV Jams" for five years.
Alonzo Bodden, the jet mechanic-turned-comic who describes his material as "cynically good natured," won season three of "Last Comic Standing." A top headliner at comedy clubs nationwide, Bodden had his own half-hour comedy special on Comedy Central, and has appeared on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," "The Late, Late Show with Craig Kilborn," "Premium Blend" and "The Keenen Ivory Wayans Show." In addition, he appeared in "Bringin' Down the House," "The Girl Next Door," "Angel" and "Grounded for Life."
A familiar face to "Last Comic Standing" viewers, Ant was a contestant in season two and has also made appearances in every other season of the show as well. He is the host of "Celebrity Fit Club" and is a regular guest on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" and "The Tyra Banks Show." He was also a regular celebrity panelist on "To Tell the Truth," a weekly correspondent on "The Dennis Miller Show" and a featured comedian on Comedy Central's "Premium Blend." His stand-up DVD is titled "Ant: America's Ready."
Called one of America's funniest female comics by Jay Leno, Kathleen Madigan was a contestant on season two of "Last Comic Standing" and was voted Best Female Stand-Up at the American Comedy Awards. A hit at comedy clubs across the country, Madigan starred in her own HBO half-hour comedy special, and in "Comedy Central Presents: Kathleen Madigan," and the "USO Comedy Tour Special." She also starred in Comedy Central's "The World Comedy Tour," and has appeared on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" and "The Late Show with David Letterman." The St. Louis native has also released two CDs, "Live" and "Shallow Happy Thoughts for the Soul," and recently released a new DVD titled "In Other Words," which debuted as a one hour special on Comedy Central.
Bodden, Ant and Madigan will scout for the best comedians from searches beginning February 26 in Los Angeles and concluding April 2 in Tempe.
The following is the schedule for casting calls, which begin in each city at 9:00 a.m.:
February 26 � Los Angeles, CA � Hollywood Improv (8162 Melrose Ave., LA 90046)
March 7 � Sydney, Australia � Location TBA
March 12 � London, England � Location TBA
March 17 � Montreal, Canada � Location TBA
March 21 � New York, NY � Gotham Comedy Club (208 W. 23rd Street, NY 10011)
March 27 � Minneapolis, MN � Acme Comedy Club (708 N. First Street, Minneapolis
March 30 � San Antonio, TX � River Center Comedy Club, 849 E. Commerce Street, Suite 893, San Antonio 78205)
April 3 � Tempe, AZ � The Tempe Improv, 930 E. University Drive, Tempe 85281)
"Last Comic Standing" is produced by Peter Engel Productions, Magical Elves and NBC Universal Television Studio. The executive producers are Peter Engel ("Saved By the Bell," "The Next Best Thing"), Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz (Bravo's "Project Runway" and "Top Chef") and Barry Katz ("Action," "Dane Cook's Tourgasm"), and Javier Winnik ("Last Comic Standing," "Treasure Hunters") is the co-executive producer.