Comedy Central Roast
|Comedy Central Roast|
|Country of origin||United States|
|Running time||90 minutes|
|Original network||Comedy Central|
|Picture format||4:3 SDTV (2003–08)
16:9 HDTV (2009–present)
|Original release||August 10, 2003– present|
The Comedy Central Roasts are a series of celebrity roast specials that air on Comedy Central. The first official Comedy Central Roast premiered on August 10, 2003. Usually one or two roasts are produced almost every year. As of 2016, a total of 15 roasts have aired. The latest roastee is Rob Lowe; his roast premiered on September 5, 2016.
Between 1998 and 2002, Comedy Central produced and televised the annual roasts of the New York Friars Club.
- 1998 – Drew Carey, Roastmaster Ryan Stiles
- 1999 – Jerry Stiller, Roastmaster Jason Alexander
- 2000 – Rob Reiner, Roastmaster Michael McKean
- 2001 – Hugh Hefner, Roastmaster Jimmy Kimmel
- 2002 – Chevy Chase, Roastmaster Paul Shaffer
After the original five-year agreement expired, the network began producing its own roasts in the same spirit. The first, featuring roastee Denis Leary (and produced by Leary's production company, Apostle), aired on August 10, 2003 and was the most watched program in the channel's history, excluding episodes of South Park.
Some roastees have stated that certain topics are off-limits. Pamela Anderson, for example, prohibited jokes about her Hepatitis C infection. Joan Rivers disallowed jokes about her daughter, Melissa. Others, like David Hasselhoff, have imposed no limits on the topics. Donald Trump only prohibited anyone making jokes about him not being as wealthy as he says he is. Although Charlie Sheen initially agreed to no restrictions on his roast, he later said during an interview with Jay Leno that he requested jokes about his mother be edited out of the broadcast.
During Charlie Sheen's roast, Steve-O made the joke "The last time this many nobodies were at a roast, at least Great White was playing", a reference to the February 20, 2003 The Station nightclub fire in West Warwick, Rhode Island that killed 100 people, which was removed from broadcast on Steve-O's request.
During Denis Leary's roast, comedian Lenny Clarke, a friend of Leary's, said there was a carton of cigarettes backstage from Bill Hicks with the message, "Wish I had gotten these to you sooner." This joke was cut from the final broadcast. During Roseanne Barr's roast, Jeff Ross compared fellow roaster Seth Green to James Holmes, responsible for the 2012 Aurora shooting. The joke was also removed.
|Roastee||Roast master(s)||Original air date||U.S. viewers
||Jeff Garlin||August 10, 2003||3.2|
|Roasters: Jim Breuer, Mario Cantone, Lenny Clarke, Dane Cook, Nick DiPaolo, Doctor Dré, Adam Ferrara, Michael J. Fox, Peter Gallagher, Don Gavin, Gina Gershon, Gilbert Gottfried as Denis' Irish Wolfhound, Ed Lover, Joe Mantegna, Conan O'Brien, Colin Quinn, Rene Russo, and Christopher Walken.|
||Bill Engvall, Ron White, & Larry the Cable Guy||March 20, 2005||6.2|
Roasters: Steve Bridges as U.S. President George W. Bush, Nick DiPaolo, Christian Finnegan, Greg Giraldo, Gilbert Gottfried as Jeff's cow, Heidi Klum, Lisa Lampanelli, Denis Leary, Jay Mohr, Patrice O'Neal, Colin Quinn, Anna Nicole Smith, and G. E. Smith. A special, pre-taped, guest appearance was made by Dr. Phil.The hip-hop group B.A.M.A. performed their cover of "Sweet Home Alabama".
||Jimmy Kimmel||August 14, 2005||4.3|
Roasters: Courtney Love, Adam Carolla, Bea Arthur, Nick DiPaolo, Greg Giraldo, Elon Gold, Eddie Griffin, Lady Bunny, Lisa Lampanelli, Tommy Lee, Jeff Ross, Sarah Silverman, Andy Dick, roastmaster Jimmy Kimmel and pre-taped appearances by David Spade and Hugh Hefner.Andy Dick appearing as Pamela's plastic surgeon and groping her breasts as part of his skit. Many of the jokes were also directed at Courtney Love for appearing to be inebriated (but claiming to have been sober for a year), Bea Arthur's masculinity, Andy Dick's ambiguous sexuality and Lisa Lampanelli's full figured body as well as her attraction towards black people.
||Jason Alexander||August 20, 2006||3.6|
Roasters: Andy Dick (as the "love child" of James T. Kirk and Spock), Farrah Fawcett, Greg Giraldo, Lisa Lampanelli, Artie Lange, Nichelle Nichols, Patton Oswalt, Kevin Pollak, Jeff Ross, George Takei, Betty White, and Fred Willard performing the roasting duties. Special, pre-taped, guest appearances were made by Leonard Nimoy, Sandra Bullock, Ben Stiller, Sarah Silverman, Jimmy Kimmel, and Clint Howard.
Notable audience members: Adrian Zmed, David Carradine, Roger Corman, Brent Spiner, Jeri Ryan, Rene Auberjonois, Rosalind Chao, Mark Valley, Carrie Fisher, Scott Hamilton, country music star Brad Paisley, Reno 911! stars Cedric Yarbrough and Niecy Nash, and Brian Posehn.Executive Produced by Joel Gallen, with Aaron Matthew Lee serving as Head Writer. The Leonard Nimoy sequence which originally opened the broadcast on Comedy Central (Nimoy and Shatner were shown having an argument over the phone) was omitted from the DVD release, while many pre-taped sequences and jokes told during the roast itself were added back in after originally being cut.The tagline for this roast was "The Shat hits the fan." The Roast was nominated for a 2007 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Variety Special. The background music for the montage of Shatner was "Everything I Do, I Do with William Shatner" by the Star Trek-influenced rock band, Warp 11. Women dressed as green Orion slave girls can be clearly seen tending bar.
||Katt Williams||August 12, 2007||3.8|
Notable audience members: Flavor of Love, Ron Jeremy, comedian Luenell, comedian Red Grant, Scott Adsit from 30 Rock, Nicole "Coco" Austin, Kordell Stewart, Derek Parker, Moonlite BunnyRanch owner Dennis Hof, and Chyna.The roast was produced by Joel Gallen.
||John Stamos||August 16, 2008||2.2|
Roasters: Susie Essman, Greg Giraldo, Brian Posehn, Jim Norton, Jeff Garlin as fictional Full House executive producer Saul Schwartz (though he broke character at the end), Gilbert Gottfried, Jon Lovitz, Norm Macdonald, Cloris Leachman, and Jeff Ross. Pre-taped appearances were delivered by Sarah Silverman, Lewis Black, and Don Rickles.
Notable audience members: Full House co-stars Lori Loughlin, Jodie Sweetin, and Dave Coulier along with Growing Pains star Alan Thicke, Rex Lee of Entourage and Quantum Leap & Star Trek: Enterprise star Scott Bakula and Alonzo Bodden.
Norm Macdonald's set was notable in that it avoided racy content and featured intentionally cheesy and antiquated jokes. He later revealed that the material was taken from a book given to him by his father that contains jokes meant to be told at retirement parties circa 1950, and that when the roast's showrunner asked him to be "shocking," he decided to go in the opposite direction of the usual roast humor. Artie Lange was scheduled but did not show at the roast because he had entered a rehabilitation center. It was later revealed that Saget was highly offended by the jokes aimed at Candace Cameron and the Olsen twins. The DVD was released on December 30, 2008.The DVD version did not include the Full House theme song as Saget comes out at the end to roast everyone who roasted him. It was replaced by instrumental music. The TV version has the theme song only.
||Lisa Lampanelli||March 16, 2009||4.1|
||Kathy Griffin||August 9, 2009||2.8|
Roasters: Carl Reiner, Gilbert Gottfried, Mario Cantone, Whitney Cummings, Tom Arnold, Brad Garrett, Robin Quivers, Greg Giraldo and Jeff Ross. Donald Trump made a pre-taped appearance and Melissa Rivers came from the audience to roast her mother. It was released on the Comedy Central Emmy Consideration DVD sent only to members of the Consideration program.
||Seth MacFarlane||August 15, 2010||3.5|
Roasters: Jeff Ross, Pamela Anderson, Lisa Lampanelli, Hulk Hogan, Jerry Springer, Whitney Cummings, Greg Giraldo, George Hamilton, and Gilbert Gottfried, Sharon Osbourne and Piers Morgan made pre-taped appearances, and William Daniels reprised his role as the voice of KITT.
Notable audience members: John Slattery, Craig Robinson, Christina Milian, Hasselhoff's two daughters, Hayley and Taylor, Hulk Hogan's son, Nick, and fellow Baywatch alumni Alexandra Paul, Nicole Eggert, Gena Lee Nolin, Traci Bingham, Angelica Bridges and Jeremy Jackson.
||Seth MacFarlane||March 15, 2011||3.5|
Roasters: Whitney Cummings, Gilbert Gottfried, Anthony Jeselnik, Larry King, Lisa Lampanelli, Marlee Matlin (interpreted by interpreter Jack Jason), Jeff Ross, Snoop Dogg, and Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino. The roast consisted of jokes toward Trump's hairstyle, his show The Apprentice, and his family. Jokes were also made about Jeselnik's fame (or lack thereof), Matlin's deafness, King's age, and Jersey Shore. Several roasters paid respect to Greg Giraldo, a Comedy Central Roast regular, who died on September 29, 2010. Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino's performance was widely panned by critics and viewers alike; as a result, Comedy Central pulled several of his jokes from the television airing of the roast. This roast was dedicated in memory of Greg Giraldo. This was also the first time someone served as roastmaster more than once, as Seth MacFarlane also roasted David Hasselhoff.
||Seth MacFarlane||September 19, 2011||6.4|
The roast was taped in Los Angeles on September 10, 2011, and was broadcast on September 19, 2011, exactly one hour after the premiere of Ashton Kutcher's first episode on Two and a Half Men where he replaced Sheen.[dead link] Slash made an appearance playing his guitar during Sheen's entrance. Harvey Levin from TMZ.com was scheduled to appear but ended up not doing so. During an interview on The View, Sheen's ex-wife, Denise Richards stated that she hadn't been invited to appear and, while she thought roasting her ex-husband could be humorous and that he would be able to take it, she feared it would have a negative impact on their daughters. Sheen's famous family members, Emilio Estevez and Martin Sheen, were unable to attend as they were promoting their film The Way, although Sheen appeared in a commercial for the roast, spoofing his film Apocalypse Now.
A montage of Sheen's film and television work were featured, though due to legal reasons, clips of his tenure on Two and a Half Men were never used. In reference to how his Two and a Half Men character Charlie Harper was killed off the series (hit by a train), Sheen arrived on stage riding on a replica locomotive. In the UK and Turkey, on the network which Two and a Half Men airs, The roast aired directly after Kutcher's first Two and a Half Men episode. This was O'Neal's final television appearance before his death on November 29, 2011.With 6.4 million viewers in its original debut, this roast was the highest rated Comedy Central Roast to date.
||Jane Lynch||August 12, 2012||2.6|
Roasters: Ellen Barkin, Wayne Brady, Carrie Fisher, Gilbert Gottfried, Seth Green, Anthony Jeselnik, Jeff Ross, Katey Sagal, and Amy Schumer, and also featured a surprise appearance by Barr's ex-husband Tom Arnold. Sharon Stone had been announced as one of the roasters, but dropped out for unknown reasons prior to the event. The final surprise of the night was Barr's choice to close out the show by legitimately singing the last two lines of The Star-Spangled Banner, in an effort to finally redeem herself for her infamous and controversial rendition of the American anthem at a nationally broadcast baseball game in 1990.
||Seth Rogen||September 2, 2013||3.1|
|Blake Anderson, Jillian Bell, Adam Devine, Andy Dick, Chris Farren, Dave Franco, Jennie Garth, Brett Gelman, Eiza González, Anders Holm, Gabriel Iglesias, Kelley Jakle, Samm Levine, Maribeth Monroe, Matthew Morrison, Amy Poehler, Stephen Rannazzisi, June Diane Raphael, Retta, Horatio Sanz, Paul Scheer, and Kate Walsh.|
||Kevin Hart||March 30, 2015||4.4|
Notable audience members: Scooter Braun, Dave Chappelle, Tito Ortiz, John Legend, Chrissy Teigen, Kendall Jenner, Jack Gilinsky, Blake Anderson, Katharine McPhee, Kourtney Kardashian, Kate Walsh, Chris Paul, Trevor Noah, Sarah Tiana, Larissa Marolt, Carly Rae Jepsen, Jaden Smith and Kyle Kinane.
In an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Ellen DeGeneres revealed that she was approached by Braun, Bieber's manager, to participate in the roast, but refused because she did not want to be mean to Bieber. Jokes referencing Paul Walker were cut out of the television broadcast.Being age 21 at the time of filming, Bieber is the youngest roastee to be roasted by Comedy Central to date.
||David Spade||September 5, 2016||2.3|
|Spike and TV Land. Bo Derek was originally announced as a roaster, but was replaced by Jewel due to a scheduling conflict. According to Tony Hinchcliffe, who was assigned by Comedy Central to write the first draft of Ann Coulter's set, Coulter was unaware of the vile nature of roasts when she agreed to participate. Many of the other roasters harshly targeted Coulter. She was criticised for her extreme political views, called a "cunt" by Davidson, compared to members of the Ku Klux Klan, and even likened to Adolf Hitler. The crowd reacted to much of Coulter's set with indifference or booing. Coulter claims that her set "killed" live and that her apparent bombing in the aired version of the roast was the result of unflattering editing. Ross refuted Coulter's claim, stating “We edited it to make her look as best we could". Her set centered around a plug for her book In Trump We Trust.|
The table below features any roasters who have appeared on more than one Comedy Central Roasts. "RM" indicates that they were the roastmaster for that roast. As of the Rob Lowe roast, the most frequent roaster has been Jeff Ross, who has appeared in all but the first two roasts, for a total of 12, and has yet to be a roastmaster.[a]
|Denis Leary (2003)||Jeff Foxworthy (2005)||Pamela Anderson (2005)||William Shatner (2006)||Flavor Flav (2007)||Bob Saget (2008)||Larry the Cable Guy (2009)||Joan Rivers (2009)||David Hasselhoff (2010)||Donald Trump (2011)||Charlie Sheen (2011)||Roseanne Barr (2012)||James Franco (2013)||Justin Bieber (2015)||Rob Lowe (2016)|
A roast for musician Kid Rock was announced in November 2010 and scheduled for January 2011, but was later replaced by the Donald Trump roast. Rock's roast was rescheduled for August 2011, but was replaced again, this time by Charlie Sheen's roast.
Also roasted in New Zealand was rugby commentator and former rugby player Murray Mexted.
In April 2014, Comedy Central Africa hosted a second roast and roasted South African businessman Kenny Kunene. The Roastmaster was British comedian Jimmy Carr, and included a dais of local personalities. Roasters included comedians John Vlismas and Tumi Morake, socialites Khanyi Mbau and Somizi Mhlongo, TV presenter Dineo Ranaka, OFM (South Africa)'s former host Rian van Heerden and music personalities PJ Powers and Jack Parow.
Awards and nominations
|2007||Primetime Emmy Award||Outstanding Variety, Music, or Comedy Special||Comedy Central Roast of William Shatner||Nominated|||
- Melas, Chloe (June 10, 2016). "Comedy Central's next roast victim: Rob Lowe". CNN.
- DiGiacomo, Frank (October 12, 2003). "Jack Carter, Smothers Brothers at Rip-Roaring Friars Roast". New York Observer. Retrieved August 15, 2007.
- "Comedy Central Milestones". Comedycentral.com. Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved August 15, 2007.
- Rosenblum, Emma (August 16, 2010). "Lisa Lampanelli on Last Night's David Hasselhoff Roast: 'I Only Make Fun of People That I Like'". New York Magazine. Retrieved March 22, 2015.
- "This Joke Was Off-limits at Donald Trump's Comedy Central Roast". 3 August 2016.
- Goodacre, Kate (September 16, 2011). "Charlie Sheen 'asked for roast joke about mother to be cut'". Digital Spy.
- "Charlie Sheen Roast: The Jokes You Didn't Hear". The Huffington Post. September 20, 2011. Retrieved January 22, 2015.
- Ziano III, Nick A. (August 10, 2003). "Roasting a comic, they turn up the flames, gently". Boston Globe. Archived from the original on August 11, 2003.
- "Jeff Ross' Aurora Massacre Joke Cut From Roseanne Roast". Rolling Stone. August 6, 2012.
- Fitzgerald, Toni. "So everyone shows up to roast Denis Leary". Media Life Magazine. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- Lisa, de Moraes (March 16, 2011). "Comedy Central roasts Donald Trump [Updated with ratings]". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- Levine, Stuart (August 11, 2009). "Joan Rivers' roast dips in ratings". Variety. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- "The Comedy Central Roast of William Shatner". Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Retrieved January 22, 2015.
- "Wednesday, August 23rd, 2006". Cynopsis Media. August 26, 2006. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- Skene, Traci; Mckim, Brian (August 16, 2007). "Jeff Ross roasts Flavor Flav CORRECTION". Shecky Magazine. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- Matt Tobey (July 14, 2008). "BREAKING: John Stamos Announced as Bob Saget Roast Master!'". ccinsider.comedycentral.com. Archived from the original on July 25, 2008. Retrieved July 26, 2008.
- "YouTube". YouTube. Archived from the original on June 11, 2014. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
- "Norm MacDonald Interview: Part 2". The Big Lead. April 30, 2011. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
- Daly, Sean (August 4, 2008). "Bob Saget Roast 'Over the Top'". New York Post. Retrieved August 24, 2010.
- Multi Channel News Staff (August 19, 2008). "Comedy Central Fans Applaud Saget Roast". Multichannel News. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- Official site Archived February 21, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
- "Comedy Central to Roast Comedic Icon Joan Rivers". The Futon Critic. April 8, 2009. Retrieved January 22, 2015.
- "Show Tracker". latimes.com.
- Meet the Roasters | The Comedy Central Roast of David Hasselfhoff | ComedyCentral.com Archived July 31, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
- The Comedy Central Roast of David Hasselhoff; Comedy Central; August 15, 2010
- Szalai, Georg (August 15, 2010). "David Hasselhoff roast a ratings hit". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- Larry King, Snoop Dogg and The Situation Among Donald Trump Roasters Archived March 8, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
- Jesse David Fox (July 21, 2016). "The 17 Best Jokes About Donald Trump From His 2011 Comedy Central Roast". vulture.com. Vulture.com. Retrieved September 21, 2016.
- "Comedy Central to Roast Donald Trump – Ratings | TVbytheNumbers". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved October 24, 2011.
- "The Situation's Trump roast jokes pulled". Naomi Rainey. Retrieved March 17, 2011.
- Gorman, Bill (March 16, 2011). "Tuesday Cable Ratings: 'Teen Mom' On Fire; 'Donald Trump Roast,' 'Tosh.0,' 'Lights Out,' & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- Tobey, Matt (August 29, 2011). "Mike Tyson, Jeffrey Ross, Steve-O, Anthony Jeselnik, and Harvey Levin Announced for Charlie Sheen Roast". Comedy Central Insider. Archived from the original on September 1, 2011. Retrieved September 1, 2011.
- Tobery, Matt (July 5, 2011). "Comedy Central to Roast Charlie Sheen". Comedy Central Insider. Comedy Central. Archived from the original on July 7, 2011. Retrieved July 5, 2011.
- Basker, Ken; Serpe, Gina (September 8, 2011). "Charlie Sheen's Celebrity Roasters Revealed – Did an Ex-Wife Make the Cut?". E! Online. Retrieved September 8, 2011.
- Video on YouTube[dead link][dead link]
- [dead link]"Martin Sheen & Emilio Estevez Talk Charlie Sheen". YouTube. August 22, 2011. Archived from the original on December 14, 2011. Retrieved October 14, 2011.
- Seidman, Robert (September 20, 2011). "Comedy Central Roast of Charlie Sheen Averages 6.4 Million Viewers". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved September 21, 2011.
- Rose, Emily (August 5, 2012). "'Roast of Roseanne': Tom Arnold makes 'surprise' appearance on a not-so-mean night". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved September 12, 2015.
- "Roseanne Roast Will Include Sharon Stone, Carrie Fisher, Katey Sagal". The Huffington Post.
- "Outrage Alert: The meanest, most corrosive jokes from Comedy Central's 'Roast of Roseanne'". Entertainment Weekly's EW.com.
- Kondolojy, Amanda (August 14, 2012). "Sunday Cable Ratings: 'True Blood' Beats 'Comedy Central Roast of Roseanne' + 'Falling Skies', NASCAR, 'Army Wives' & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- "Comedy Central Homepage". Comedy Central. Retrieved July 12, 2013.
- Bibel, Sara (September 3, 2013). "Monday Cable Ratings: 'Comedy Central Roast of James Franco' Wins Night, College Football, 'WWE Raw', 'T.I. & Tiny', 'Basketball Wives', 'Teen Mom' & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- "Justin Bieber: I'm Gonna Get Hannibal Lectured at the Roast". TMZ. February 16, 2015. Retrieved March 22, 2015.
- Marianne Zumberge (March 5, 2015). "Comedy Central's Justin Bieber Roasters to Include Snoop Dogg, Martha Stewart". Variety. Retrieved March 5, 2015.
- Alex Stedman. "Paul Walker Jokes Removed from Roast of Justin Bieber - Variety". Variety.
- Bibel, Sara (March 31, 2015). "Monday Cable Ratings: Comedy Central Roast Wins Night, 'WWE Raw', 'Better Call Saul', 'Teen Mom', 'Bates Motel' & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved March 31, 2015.
- Itzoff, Dave (August 25, 2016). "Coulter confirmation". Twitter. Retrieved August 25, 2016.
- Snierson, Dan (August 17, 2016). "Peyton Manning, Bo Derek, Rob Riggle set to roast Rob Lowe". EW.com. Retrieved August 17, 2016.
- "Ann Coulter Was At 'The Roast Of Rob Lowe' Because She Didn't Know What A Roast Was - SPIN". 6 September 2016.
- Yahr, Emily (6 September 2016). "The Ann Coulter jokes at the Rob Lowe roast? They really were that brutal." – via washingtonpost.com.
- Juzwiak, Rich. "Roastmaster Jeff Ross: The Roast Was Edited To Make Ann Coulter Look as Best We Could".
- "UPDATED: SHOWBUZZDAILY's Top 150 Monday Cable Originals & Network Finals: 9.5.2016 - Showbuzz Daily".
- Gene Simmons Family Jewels. Season 3. Episode 17. A&E. 2008.
- Halperin, Shirley. "Willie Nelson Comedy Central roast is postponed", Entertainment Weekly, March 11, 2008
- "Comedy Central Is High on Willie Nelson! Network to Roast American Icon". The Futon Critic. February 5, 2008. Retrieved January 22, 2015.
- Ross, Jeffrey (2009). I Only Roast the Ones I Love. New York: Gallery Books. p. 190. ISBN 9781439101407.
- "Kid Rock plans 40th birthday roast". San Francisco Chronicle. November 3, 2010. Retrieved March 22, 2015.
- "Comedy Central to Roast Kid Rock". Comedy Central Insider. Comedy Central. May 9, 2011. Archived from the original on May 12, 2011. Retrieved May 9, 2011.
- "Roast of Mike King | Show | Comedy Central New Zealand". Comedycentral.co.nz. November 23, 2010. Retrieved October 24, 2011.
- "Jimmy Carr To Spice Up "The Comedy Central Roast Of Kenny Kunene Fired Up By Nando's". Comedy Central Africa. February 23, 2014. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
- "Final Roasters Revealed!| News". Comedy Central Africa. March 17, 2014. Retrieved May 17, 2014.