Posts Tagged “Earthquake”

Brett Ratner Receives Lifetime Achievement Award At Friars Club

Last night Brett Ratner was honored at The Friars Club during the third annual Friars Club Comedy Film Festival produced by powerhouse Exec. Director Charlie Prince, and his team some of which are Senior Programmer Susannah Gora, Social Media Director Sue Constantine, Programming Director Eric Johnson, Managing Director Jor Law, and Director of Communications, Jaime Marsanico, who did a fantastic job coordinating last night’s event.

The festival screened over 60 films over the five days that it ran and they were from an international pool of films. It was a HUGE amount of work and they are to be commended!

Brett Ratner is one of the most accomplished and respected film, and music video directors in all of Hollywood, and he’s only 42. He’s known for the Rush Hour series starring Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker, as well as The Family Man, Red Dragon, and X-Men, The Last Stand. He was also a producer on the Fox drama Prison Break and will be producing the 84th Academy Awards next year, on Feb. 26th, 2012, with co-producer Don Mischer, and with Eddie Murphy as the host. What a team that should be!

Jeffrey Gurian from Comedy Matters TV with Brett Ratner after he received his Lifetime Achievement Award from The Friars Club, during the Friars Club Comedy Film Festival!

Eddie recently received the Comedy Icon Award from Comedy Central at the First Annual Comedy Central Awards and was presented that award by Tracy Morgan!

Tracy Morgan presenting Eddie Murphy with the Comedy Icon Award at the First Annual Comedy Central Awards!

But in 1990, Brett was still a film student at NYU. How he got in is an example of his determination. He was initially rejected due to his poor grades, but he got in to see the Dean himself and after literally begging him to watch one of his films, impressed him enough that he let him in as a student.

Brett’s student film was ” What Ever Happened to Mason Reese?” It starred Rebecca Gayheart, Anthony Michael Hall, and of course Mason Reese, an actor who became famous as a child in the 1970’s for a TV commercial he did for Underwood Devil Ham that swept the country, in which he mis-pronounced the word Schmorgasbord as “Borgashmord”. People loved it and he was an instant star.

Jeffrey Gurian with Mason Reese at Mason’s birthday party! He served a Borgashmord of course!

As an aside, for anyone who’s wondering about where Mason is now, he’s right here in NYC and doing great! He currently owns two restaurants in NYC. One is Paladar, a Pan-Latino restaurant located in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, and the other is “Destination Bar and Grille” located on Avenue A in the East Village. He’s an old friend and I see him a few times a year!

Brett found himself short on funds to finish his film, so he made another spectacular life-changing choice, and sent out “plea letters” to 20 different producers in Hollywood asking for monetary assistance to finish his film. He got only one response, but that was all he needed. Of all people, Steven Spielberg, of Amblin Entertainment sent him a check for $5,000, without ever meeting him.

Brett brought that same film to the attention of Russell Simmons, who was impressed enough that he got Brett into directing music videos, for the likes of Jay-Z, Mariah Carey, and Madonna! Not bad credits for anyone’s resume! (LOL) Russell has since been a close friend and was asked to present Brett with his Lifetime Achievement Award.

Brett once said he wouldn’t attempt to direct a feature film until he had directed 100 music videos. In 1996, the director of a film called ” Money Talks”, starring Charlie Sheen and Chris Tucker, dropped out and Russell suggested Brett Ratner to take over, which he did. That launched his career and led to his multiple big-screen successes.

Russell Simmons himself is not only known as a music impresario, but also throughout the comedy world for creating Def Jam Comedy. I recently attended some tapings he did for Comedy Central that were hosted by JB Smoove, with DJ Cassidy on the ones and twos, that starred comics like Tony Rock, Capone, Tifffany Haddish, Wil Sylvince, Earthquake, Owen Smith and tons more!

Russell Simmons with Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV on the step-and-repeat for Brett Ratner, at The Friars Club!

JB Smoove host of Russell Simmons Comedy Central Stand-Up NY specials with Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV at the Edison Ballroom!

DJ Cassidy, super hot DJ for Russell Simmons’ Comedy Central special with Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV!

Russell Simmons came to present Brett Ratner with the award, and even billionaire Ron Perelman dropped by to say a few words and pay his respects to his good friend Brett.

Russell Simmons making his opening remarks before presenting the Lifetime Achievement Award to his pal Brett Ratner!

Ron Perelman paying his respects to director Brett Ratner at The Friars Club in NYC!

Everybody is anxiously awaiting Brett’s new film “Tower Heist” starring Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, and Matthew Broderick, which is set to open November 4th 2011, and should be a big hit!

(L-R) David Wain, Michael Ian Black, Jeffrey Gurian, and Ben Stiller at Fez, circa 2000!

The Tower Heist poster, showing the incredible cast for the film opening November 4th, 2011.

Video of this fantastic Friars Club event can be seen right here, showing not only an interview with Brett, but also with other celeb guests such as Richard Belzer, and Aisha Tyler!

Russell Simmons chatting up the gorgeous comic/actress Aisha Tyler!

Posted in: Breaking News, Celeb Photos, Comedians In The News, Comedy Events, Featured, Film Review, Hot Models, New Films, Press Junkets, Red Carpet Events

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Russell Simmons Presents NY Stand-Up In Comedy Central Special

Russell Simmons shot three new episodes of “Russell Simmons Presents NY Stand Up” featuring the hysterically funny JB Smoove as the host/MC, and DJ Cassidy on the ones and twos! ( Only the very hippest of you out there will know that expression! LOL ) It was shot at the Edison Ballroom, on West 47th Street in the heart of the theatre district of Manhattan, and seating and arrangements were expertly handled by Samantha Black of The Black List, as usual.

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with the hilarious JB Smoove, host of Russell Simmons shows for Comedy Central!

It needs to be said that JB Smoove is so funny he just has to show up for people to start laughing uncontrollably. He doesn’t even have to say anything. What a gift! His physicality is as funny as what he says. I have met so many legends in comedy that it usually doesn’t even phase me any more, but I remember being so excited to meet him in Montreal last year.

Click on the link below for audio interview with JB Smoove –

JBSmoove_Hyatt_Montreal

I was even gladder to find out he’s been repped for the last 7 years by my old friend Rick Dorfman of Rain Management Group, who I saw at the taping. Not only did I see him but he was kind enough to take the photo you see above! ( Photo credit Rick Dorfman! LOL )

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV backstage at the Edison Ballroom with Tony Rock!

The first night I went I saw Dov Davidoff, Damn Fool, Tony Rock who I had come to support, Earthquake, Tiffany Haddish who I had met many years ago out in LA when she was just starting out at The Laugh Factory, and Wil Sylvince who was the MC in the Kevin Hart show I co-produced last year at Westbury Theatre.

Jeffrey Gurian with the lady in red, Tiffany Haddish backstage at the Edison Ballroom for Russell Simmons' show for Comedy Central!

The second night I got to see Kareem Green, Owen Smith who I had seen opening for my buddy Russell Peters in NYC, and a real favorite of mine Capone, the hardcore gangster of comedy!

Owen Smith klling it onstage at the Edison Ballroom for the taping of Russell Simmons' show "Russell Simmons Presents NY Stand-Up"!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with Capone at Anthony Anderson's Mixtape Show!

Plus it’s ALWAYS fun to see my man DJ Cassidy spinning the best tunes. It really makes a difference to the audience and gets them in the mood when the right music is played before and during the show. Comedy and hip-hop definitely works as Russell Peters figured out long ago!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with his old friend DJ Cassidy who is the only man in New York who can pull off that look, and do it so well!

He got his first turntable when he was 12 years old, and now he spins for Jay-Z and Beyonce, Russell Simmons, Diddy, and all the big hip-hop stars. Give it up for my man DJ Cassidy!!!

Posted in: Celeb Photos, Comedians In The News, Comedy Events, Comedy Matters, Featured, Nightlife Events, Red Carpet Events

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