A lot of comedians hope their Internet videos land in front of directors -- but UCB dynamo Rob Lathan's video featuring his character "Permanent Nutface Gary" led to a role in an independent film -- as Permanent Nutface Gary!
This March, screenwriter/actor/comedian Ross Patterson sent Rob an email saying that he had seen the video of Permanent Nutface Gary and really loved it. Patterson asked if he could write the character into his screenplay, "Poolboy: Drowning Out the Fury," as a mastermind villain.Rob agreed; filming was in mid-July.
Rob was kind enough to give the UCB Comedy blog the lowdown from the set of "Poolboy":
When I first got the e-mail from Ross Patterson, I was a little skeptical, but then I read the screenplay and thought it was hilarious. It's sort of an insane version of a Zucker Brothers movie, where there's basically a joke in every line. I also figured, what the hell, it's such a great story to have a character I created named Permanent Nutface Gary to star in a movie as a mastermind villain.
So cut to last Sunday, I'm flown out to LA. They paid for my rental car and my flight (in coach - I guess Gary hasn't quite gotten to First Class status yet), and paid me scale. But I would have done if for free.
Nutface Gary and Kevin Sorbo
I went in thinking it would be a small, independent movie. And it was. But when I see the call sheet, I realize Kevin Sorbo (from Hercules fame) is going to be in it as the lead, as well as Jason Mewes (from Clerks and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back), who will be playing Kevin's stunt double (now you get the tone of the movie). We all shared the same trailer in different compartments, so we hung out a little bit on set. I asked to get some picture with the stars, posing as Permanent Nutface Gary each time.
Jason Mewes and Nutface Gary
Things only got better when I discovered that playing the henchman to Permanent Nutface Gary was none other than Danny Trejo, who will be playing the lead in the upcoming movie, Machete. True to his character, Trejo remained shirtless throughout the filming.
Danny Trejo and Nutface Gary
A couple of other highlights from the first day included:
Explaining the premise of Permanent Nutface Gary to Jason Mewes
Performing in a scene with Jason where he says the line, "Who are you?" To which Gary responds in an automated voice, "I am Permanent Nutface Gary."
Witnessing Kevin Sorbo twirl a pool rake as a weapon as if it was nothing
Hearing Sorbo recount at lunch that he'll make more money signing autographs for 5 minutes at Comic Con than he will during the 10 days of filming "Poolboy." But he loved the screenplay, so he signed up for the movie.
Meeting the actor who played Jar Jar Binks on set. He plays a ninja named "Sidney Moncrief" in the movie, and nailed his scene, so it looks like he's moved from his Jar Jar days.
Hearing the director announce with complete sincerity: "We need Nutface's wheelchair on set. Bring the Nutface wheelchair pronto!"
Getting fake blood and Chinese throwing stars splattered all over Gary's Nutface
For the second day Permanent Nutface Gary had a sex scene with actress Alanna Ubach (who's been in Hung, Legally Blonde and a bunch of other things). This scene would explain how Gary got his condition. Also, Gary's backstory in the movie was that he was a famed Russian scientist, so I would be speaking with a Russian accent. I explained to the writer that I don't usually do Russian accents, to which he responded, "Don't worry, the worse the accent is, the better." So Alanna and I did the scene and we nailed it.
Although Rob isn't sure when (or if) this movie will hit theaters, but the film does have a little star power and buzz behind it...especially coming from famed screen legend and notorious villain: Permanent Nutface Gary....
Rob Lathan has appeared on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon," "The Colbert Report," "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," "Human Giant," and "Best Week Ever." Rob co-wrote a self help parody book with Will Hines titled "Get Psyched"! He is also working on a one man show called "A Benefit for Permanent Nutface Gary."
Amy Rhodes, a teacher and performer at UCB, won a Daytime Emmy as a staff writer for TheEllen DeGeneres Show. Says Amy, "I spent most of the ceremony trying to take a picture on my phone of Erik Estrada who was sitting a few rows in front of us."
Prior to working for The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Amy was the Director Of Content and a staff writer for Will Ferrell, Judd Apatow and Adam McKay's website Funny or Die. She has written for shows on MTV and Nickelodeon, and wrote an original sitcom pilot for the Oxygen network.
At UCBTLA, Amy wrote and directed the play Three Compañeros, which was recommended by LA.com, Defamer and LA City Beat. In addition, Amy has written and performed in two solo shows and is the recipient of the Emerging Comics Award for Best Solo Show. She co-created and performed in the play Spooky Dog & The Teen-Age Gang Mysteries, which was published by Samuel French, Inc. and is currently being produced in regional theaters across the country.
Amy has also appeared on Late Night With Conan O'Brien, Last Call With Carson Daly, Lewis Black's Root of All Evil and Fuel TV's The Daily Habit. She has performed at The San Francisco Sketch Fest and Las Vegas Comedy Festival. In addition to teaching at UCB, she has been a member of several Harold Teams and has performed in Sketch Cram, ASSSSCAT and with the all-female improv team Mother F'rs.
Bryan Safi, a writer/performer at UCB, won a Daytime Emmy as a staff writer for the Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Bryan is currently a staff writer at Current TV for the half-hour show InfoMania and is the host/co-creator of its popular segment That's Gay. Bryan has also been on staff at "Funny or Die." At UCBTLA, Bryan co-created and co-performed the show Raffie: Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Beets with Amy Rhodes. The show was accepted to the 2010 SF Sketchfest.
Bryan is also a member of the Maude Team Kirkland's Signature.
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