The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Now that’s funny! » » Comic actors (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
aussiemagic
View Profile
Special user
937 Posts

Profile of aussiemagic
Who are the best comic actors?

And, can watching comedy actors help us to develop our own character/style of comedy?

Simon
How to become a professional magician:
Click here
mrmystic
View Profile
Regular user
Chicago
200 Posts

Profile of mrmystic
Let me answer your second question first. Yes watching others is a great way to learn, but there are as many great comic actors as there are styles of comedy. What do you want to learn, what fits your style. Johnny Carson learned from Jack Benny, Tom Mullica learned from Red Skelton because that was the style of comedy that they were interested in. Do you want to learn slapstick, silly humor, dry humor? In this video age there are many greats from the past and present that you can learn from. Decide what you are interisted in style wise and head to the video store.
aussiemagic
View Profile
Special user
937 Posts

Profile of aussiemagic
Good question.
Let me start by saying that when I peform magic I don't tell any jokes as such but I get laughs from situational comedy/interaction with audience members. This style of performance seems to suit me and I am attracted to material that is funny. I am also a talking performer, I don't do any "visual comedy" like kicking my hat as I try to pick it up, etc. I don't like that type of style so much. By the way, I mostly perform for adults, I rarely do kids shows.

As for actors that I think are funny, I like: Steve Martin, Ben Stiller, the late Chris Farley, Jack Black, I liked Jerry Lewis when I was a kid.

As for magicians, I like: Jeff Hobson, the late Billy McComb, and the little I have seen of Michael Finney.

Does that answer your question? Do you have any suggestions of comic actors to watch?

Thanks
How to become a professional magician:
Click here
aussiemagic
View Profile
Special user
937 Posts

Profile of aussiemagic
I also like Chevy Chase, Will Ferrel(spell?), Bill Murray.
How to become a professional magician:
Click here
God-glorified
View Profile
Special user
697 Posts

Profile of God-glorified
Aussie, I agree with you on the preference of comedy as it is what I enjoy also.

There are basically two types of humor I have in my show, the first is audience interaction humor - this is where I am responding to an audience member and my response is what causes the humor. Study for this JERRY SEINFELD and BOB NEWHART. (They were masters of response)

The second type is where you go out to make your own humor, just making everything look funny. For this I choose Dane Cook and Robin Williams.
Hope this helps
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
aussiemagic
View Profile
Special user
937 Posts

Profile of aussiemagic
Thanks!

Anymore?

Simon
How to become a professional magician:
Click here
eryanic
View Profile
Special user
683 Posts

Profile of eryanic
Magicians --> Bill Malone & David Acer!
Hansen
View Profile
Special user
Down Under
653 Posts

Profile of Hansen
Watching great comedians and "absorbing" comedy on a daily basis is, in my humble opinion, the very best method of developing one's own sense of humour and style of comedy. At the beginning, watch everything you can get your eyes on. Then start to concentrate on the comedians that really make you laugh -- the ones you really love. In time (it seems to happen fairly quickly), your own comic "personality/character" will manifest itself naturally and easily. If you try to force it you will come across as fake (not to mention the stress of trying to create a funny and original character -- just absorb the work of comedy greats and express your own individual sense of humour and you're guaranteed to be funny and original. Sure, at the beginning you may sound similar to your favourite comedians, but in time your own personality will come blazing through -- voila, you then have your comic character!).
If you want to learn from a master, I recommend watching the whole "Seinfeld" series (there is a reason that Jerry Seinfeld made gazillions from this show -- he truly knows the ins and outs of comedy). You could also try getting your hands on some old Bill Cosby and Abbot and Costello material -- they both heavily influenced Jerry Seinfeld when he was young.
And, having read practically every book on comedy writing available (I make my living writing humorous articles for newspapers and magazines around the world), I would like to recommend a book written by a zoologist! Seriously, to really understand the nature of laughter and what makes human beings laugh, there is no better book than "The Naked Ape" by Desmond Morris. The chapter on early childhood development will succintly teach you everything you need to know to make people laugh (as well as save you much time and head-scratching trying to get your brain around -- and put into practical use -- all the theories on humour out there in book form, much of which doesn't truly satisfy your hunger to know "Why do people laugh and how can I make them laugh whenever I want or need to? In my experience, theories and formulas are simply not practical when it comes to spontaneously creating humour.)
Best of luck,
Jason
aussiemagic
View Profile
Special user
937 Posts

Profile of aussiemagic
Thanks Jason. I will check that book out.

I am from Brisbane too by the way.

Best

Simon
How to become a professional magician:
Click here
Moyle with Parkinsons
View Profile
Loyal user
Australia
281 Posts

Profile of Moyle with Parkinsons
Big shout out to all the aussie, Melbournite here. I just wanted to chim in and agree with aussie here, interaction humour is what I am all about. I don't go for the goofy stuff I love asking a spectator to pick a card and return it to anywhere in the deck only to tell them to put it on the top because otherwise its too hard, hysterical!

Moyle
"Signatures cause far too much trouble!" an original quote by Moyle With Parkinsons.
thecardtrick
View Profile
New user
Northern NJ
72 Posts

Profile of thecardtrick
Watched about an hour of the best of Abbott and Costello today. Great slapstick ideas.
Skip Way
View Profile
Inner circle
3771 Posts

Profile of Skip Way
Two of the BEST videos I've seen on Stand-Up and creating a comedy persona are the 1988 "Punchline" with Tom Hanks and Sally Fields and the 2002 documentary "Comedian" with Jerry Seinfeld. "Comedian" is mandatory viewing for all of my comedy students. Both films stress the importance of simply being yourself. I believe it's good to know and study the greats who came before...but, as Dan Sylvester so wisely stated in one of his recent posts (paraphrased):

<< Too many magicians keep...looking toward others for magic, effects and methods. How can we possibly find a character that suits us by assuming the characteristics nurtured by others? Only by creating the magic within ourselves can we discover who we are and how our character reacts. Our performance character exists within us; it’s been there since childhood when we first experienced magic in a very real way. We can’t find this character until we discover our inner artistic voice. The only way to find that is through the creative process; we have to create our own magic! All this reading and all the video learning confuses us. Books and videos will not teach us how to create a stage persona that is exclusively ours. >>

Know where and how your art originated. Study the masters. Then, once you have a foundation to build upon, close the doors and look within to find and nurture the character that is yours and yours alone. Only then will you stand out above the rabble.

Robin Williams is an original with a foundation built around mime, improv and Jonathan Winters. Jeff Foxworthy, Drew Carey, Ellen DeGeneres, Jerry Lewis, Jim Carrey...all originals. Sylvester the Jester...oh yeah...definitely an original. David Copperfield, Siegfried & Roy, Carl Ballantine, The Amazing Jonathan, Penn & Teller, Criss Angel...all frontiersmen exploring new depths of the art.

I personally love the characters portrayed by Steve Martin, Robin Williams, Bill Cosby, Bill Malone and Drew Carey. Their very humanity and naturalness on stage attracts and motivates my comic muse.

What a grand adventure to spend your life tracking down the most elusive game of all: Yourself.

Skip
How you leave others feeling after an Experience with you becomes your Trademark.

Magic Youth Raleigh - RaleighMagicClub.org
Eric Buss
View Profile
Regular user
183 Posts

Profile of Eric Buss
I am currently reading a book called, "The Eight Characters of Comedy" The guide to sitcom acting and writing.

It's a great book for many reasons, but first and foremost it dissects each character (the lovable loser, the logical smart one, the mean one, etc) and their idiosyncrasies. It helps the actor to not only find themself, but to help them better play each character, or at least the ones they would realisticaly audition for.

It also discusses timing, joke structure, etc... HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

I will also be taking classes at Second City in July... I will get back to you! I can't wait!
Bill Ligon
View Profile
Inner circle
A sure sign of a misspent youth:
6437 Posts

Profile of Bill Ligon
Ah, but you put your finger on what I dislike about most (not all) sitcoms -- they are done by formula. If you can list the characters in types, as "the lovable loser, the logical smart one, etc., the sitcoms are all essentially the same. Please don't misunderstand: I am not criticizing the book, and I am not familiar with it. I am sure it contains a great deal of worthwhile information. It is the sitcoms that I have a beef with.
Author of THE HOLY ART: Bizarre Magick From Naljorpa's Cave. NOW IN HARDCOVER! VIEW: <BR>www.lulu.com/content/1399405 ORDER: http://stores.lulu.com/naljorpa
<BR>A TASSEL ON THE LUNATIC FRINGE
Vandy Grift
View Profile
Inner circle
Milwaukee
3504 Posts

Profile of Vandy Grift
When I saw this thread the name that came first to mind was Jack Lemmon. I could list dozens of great comedic actors. I think Lemmon is unique to this thread because of all the ones named were comedians. Jack Lemmon wasn't a comedian. He was an actor. But man could he play funny.
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
Vibono Magic
View Profile
Special user
Växjö,Sweden
647 Posts

Profile of Vibono Magic
For a ground studdy in timing, mime and whit I would go with the old masters of commedy Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, The Marx brothers, Juaque Tati. also try to studdy some of the great colwns like Charlie Rivel, Oleg Popov, Grock, the Rastelli famely, Gorge Carl and the great Fatini.
many of them did great commedy without saying one word or used just one word in a fay thast made it funny.

Jonas Karlsson
Vibono Magic / Vibono & Mirage
Sweden
Vibono Mirage
Magic entertainer and Balloon artist
Hansen
View Profile
Special user
Down Under
653 Posts

Profile of Hansen
Agreed, Jonas! For me, Buster Keaton is a comedy god. Check out his classic movie "The Navigator" for a masterclass in comedy and a gut-busting laugh.
I'd also like to add the name of the great Roberto Benigni. In my humble opinion, I consider Roberto Benigni to be the world's funniest living comedian (a big call, I know!).
And if Roberto Benigni did card magic he would look like Juan Tamariz! Naturally, Juan is my favourite magician...
Cheers,
Jason
kOnO
View Profile
Special user
545 Posts

Profile of kOnO
To learn comedy at its very best watch the legendary comedian Groucho Marx when he hosted the zany TV quiz show "You Bet Your Life" (now available on DVD)


kOnO
It is a lot easier to get older than it is to get wiser.
harris
View Profile
Inner circle
Harris Deutsch
8663 Posts

Profile of harris
On of my early heroes of comedy was/is Danny Kaye.

Harris Deutsch
Laughologist
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
drlaugh4u@gmail.com
music, magic and marvelous toys
http://magician.org/member/drlaugh4u
honus
View Profile
Veteran user
354 Posts

Profile of honus
If you do the "magician in trouble" sort of comedy, you can't do better for inspiration than the great W.C. Fields.

For verbal humor, I have to echo several others: Groucho. The absolute master of comedic timing.

But for comedic acting, my favorite of all time is Albert Brooks. Why? Because he doesn't SEEM to do anything funny. He just reacts as a normal person would under abnormal circumstances. Kills me every time. (Plus, his Lost In America featured the funniest line of all time, which propriety prevents me from repeating here.)
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Now that’s funny! » » Comic actors (0 Likes)
 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.22 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL