More and more, comedy festivals will not let the pandemic completely have them down and out for another year.
They may have to do the majority, if not all, of their festivities virtually, but festivals such as the USC Comedy Festival, running from April 9th-11th. Now in its fifth year, this fest will once again present a wide range of panels, screenings, events that key in on the USC School of Cinematic Arts’ extensive alumni network/reputation (that seems to be exempt from all the controversy that USC has suffered over the last few years) that will include guests such as Aidy Bryant, Demetri Martin, Lisa Kudrow, Lindy West, Matt Besser, Patton Oswalt, Wayne Federman (a USC Professor for comedy), Ziwe, and Ramy Youssef.
Take a gander at the whole schedule below:
Friday, April 9th, 2021
Each year FIRST LOOK, and SCA Industry Relations, through the generosity of Marcia Lucas’ Ohana Foundation, showcases current student work. The USC Comedy Festival is delighted to collaborate with First Look to bring you this preview of student films competing in this year’s Comedy Category. Films in Program 1 will include: Unmothered, Get Kissed or Die Brian, Jurassic Punk, and Spit it Out, Margot.
7:00 PM: CAN COMEDY BE TAUGHT?
Before COVID, half the people you knew were taking improv classes. The other half were teaching them. Was the whole thing a scam? Can comedy be taught? Should it be? Our panel of experts will discuss the problems and possibilities of the comedy curriculum. For free.
Joining Professor Wayne Federman will be improv legend, UCB founder, and host of the podcast Improv4humans Matt Besser; Groundling, portrayer of both Buffay twins, and current star of Netflix’s Space Force Lisa Kudrow; and stand-up comedian, Overthinker, Ice Bear, and author of If It’s Not Funny It’s Art, Demetri Martin.
Saturday, April 10th, 2021
Each year FIRST LOOK, and SCA Industry Relations, through the generosity of Marcia Lucas’ Ohana Foundation, showcases current student work. The USC Comedy Festival is delighted to collaborate with First Look to bring you this preview of student films competing in this year’s Comedy Category. Films in Program 2 will include: No Small Talk, Hardcore Halbert, and Time Again.
The Jack Oakie & Victoria Horne Oakie Masters of Comedy Lecture Series presents Emmy-winning Actor/Comedian Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live, Barry, Documentary Now!) in conversation with USC Professor Wayne Federman. As part of the event, Bill Hader will also receive USC Comedy’s 2021 Oakie Award.
2:00 PM: WOMEN CREATING COMEDY
A Panel Discussion hosted by the Women of Cinematic Arts, featuring Chelsea Devantez, Ziwe Fumudoh, London Hughes, Jana Schmieding, and Rachel Sennott, moderated by WCA Board Member and SCA Alumna Shannon Hardy.
5:00 PM: Spotlight on Netflix’s BIG MOUTH
A Conversation about the Netflix Original Series, featuring Andrew Goldberg (Co-Creator, Executive Producer), Mark Levin (Co-Creator, Executive Producer), Jennifer Flackett (Co-Creator, Executive Producer), and Kelly Galuska (Co-Executive Producer), moderated by SCA Professor J.D. Connor, Ph.D.
A Conversation about the FX Original Series, featuring Paul Simms (Executive Producer, Writer, Showrunner), Stefani Robinson (Executive Producer, Writer, Showrunner), and Sam Johnson (Co-Executive Producer, Writer), moderated by SCA Professor Chris Marcil.
Sunday, April 11th, 2021
11:00 AM: Spotlight on Hulu’s SHRILL
A Conversation about the Hulu Original Series, featuring Executive Producer/Star Aidy Bryant, Executive Producer/Showrunner Ali Rushfield, and Executive Producer/Author Lindy West, moderated by SCA Professor Mary McNamara, Pulitzer Prize-winning TV Critic and Cultural Editor for the Los Angeles Times.
1:00 PM: Spotlight on Hulu’s WOKE
A Conversation about the Hulu Original Series, featuring Co-Creators Keith Knight and Marshall Todd, and Executive Producer/Director Maurice Marable, moderated by Desa Philadelphia, SCA Communication and Development Writer.
3:00 PM: Spotlight on Hulu’s ADULT ANIMATION
A Conversation with the creatives behind Crossing Swords, Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K., and Solar Opposites, featuring John Harvatine IV (Co-Creator, Crossing Swords), Tom Root (Co-Creator/EP, Crossing Swords), Jordan Blum (Co-Creator/Showrunner, Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K.), Patton Oswalt (Co-Creator/Star, Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K.), Josh Bycel (Co-Showrunner/EP, Solar Opposites), and Mike McManhan (Co-Creator/Co-Showrunner/EP, Solar Opposites).
4:45 PM: FROM PITCH TO PEABODY
A Conversation with Billy Rosenberg, Vice President, Hulu Originals, Head of Comedy and Ramy Youssef, Creator & Star of Hulu’s Ramy, on the nuts and bolts of how comedy is developed, moderated by Deana Nassar Fernandez, Program Director – Middle East Media Initiative (MEMI).