Hayden Black (born 27 July 1976) is an English actor and writer best known for critical & commercial comedy Internet/TV hit Goodnight Burbank and BBC America's "The Brit List."
Life and career
Black left a career as an on-air promo producer for the networks to form his own production company Haydenism Inc. Since forming it in 2005 he has created, written and acted in some of the most popular shows the web has seen. The Guardian calls him “one of Internet comedy’s brightest stars.”
His first show, Goodnight Burbank, has picked up numerous awards and nominations and has been called a “wicked satire, bracingly funny… competitive with the very best that networks have to offer” by the LA Times and “one of my favorite shows” by the Wall Street Journal’s Walt Mossberg.
In 2007 Black launched Abigail's Teen Diary (also known as Abigail’s X-Rated Teen Diary) about a 13-year-old girl with a fictional genetic condition that gives her the appearance of a man in his thirties. It too was nominated for awards and was called "silly, funny & sometimes poignant" by the Manchester Evening News and "cutting-edge comedy" by Fortune magazine.
In 2009, Black created a six-part comedy for Babelgum.com called The Occulterers. A comedy-horror, it co-starred Black alongside Ellen Sandweiss (The Evil Dead), James C. Leary (Buffy), and Camden Toy (Buffy/Angel). He also shot a pilot called The Cabonauts, a sci-fi musical comedy co-starring Star Trek’s Nichelle Nichols.
In April 2011, Black released a rebooted Goodnight Burbank on Hulu. Along with Black it stars Laura Silverman, Dominic Monaghan, Miracle Laurie and John Barrowman and featured Jim Rash, Juliet Landau, Parvesh Cheena and Fran Kranz. It also became the first half-hour show to make the leap from the web to TV when Mark Cuban licensed the series to air on his cable network HDNet - the same day it debuted on Hulu.
Goodnight Burbank made IMDB's Top 50 TV series to premiere in 2011.
In 2012, Black starred in the Richard Schiff-produced web series "Chasing The Hill", a political drama, alongside Robin Weigert, Matthew Del Negro and Sharon Lawrence. He jokes that he did it because, thanks to acting with Sharon Lawrence, he is now just one degree away from Kevin Bacon. In October, he contributed a piece to a UK book entitled "Behind the Sofa: Celebrity Memories of Dr. Who". It was for charity, and other contributors included Neil Gaiman, Jonathan Ross and Charlie Brooker. It was named one of Amazon's Best Books of the Year 2013.
In December, 2012, Black began as a regular guest/contributor to the BBC America TV series "The Brit List." His first episode, "The Dr Who Ultimate List Of Lists" aired in Dec 2012 and "The Top 20 Most Outrageous Celebrities" followed in Jan 2013.
Black is a prolific tweeter and his Tweets have also been featured in a variety of prestigious publications including Time Magazine. In 2012, he became a Witstream "aristocrat." Witstream curates the "best comedic tweets" on the web and Black became a permanent contributor. He's also a Voice Over talent and has provided voices for TMZ, the CW, and BBC America. His reel can be found here.
In February 2013 he co-hosted a six-hour, live Oscar show that encompassed the red carpet and the Academy Awards itself on Mevio. In April 2013, he joined Yahoo's hugely popular daily "Who Knew?" series as its sole writer & voice over. He worked on the 5th season and voiced the series in an American accent. The series was produced by Shine America. In December 2013, he contributed sketches, including a controversial one about Justin Bieber, to the Channel 4 TV show "2013: Mashed." It aired in the UK and was produced by The Connected Set.
In 2014, Black wrote/directed/produced Gen Zed, an animated comedy about four college-age kids living in Downtown LA. Making it historic is the fact that it's the first-ever animated series to feature a Transgender actress in a lead role (and as a Transgender character too). Metro calls Gen Zed "groundbreaking." It co-stars Richard Schiff and Jane Wiedlin and features cameos from Trans icons such as Fallon Fox, Trace Lysette and Jenna Talackova. It's set to premiere in late 2015.