It’s more than a motto. It’s a movie!
Eat, Drink, Laugh is the forthcoming documentary about the World Famous Comic Strip Live. Filmmakers Abby Russell and Brent Sterling Nemetz began shooting in July, documenting the goings-on at the Club and interviewing its alumni comics in New York and L.A. The heart of their story, though, lies with club proprietors Richie Tienken and Bob Wachs, the owners-turned-managers who enjoyed immense success representing Eddie Murphy and who will try to repeat history with an exciting, new roster of comedians. The crew will also be following the duo in their daily lives to get a feel for how and why the club has been so successful.
A look at the vaunted wall of fame in the lobby of the club displays the monumental role the Comic Strip has played in comedy history. So many comics got their start on stage (or behind the bar!) here: Jerry Seinfeld, Adam Sandler, Sarah Silverman—the list is incredible. Chris Rock, another CSL alum, is the executive producer of the film, a tribute to the Club from where he got his start and to where he often returns to work out new material.
So far, Abby and Brent have interviewed comics like Paul Reiser, Colin Quinn, and Jeff Ross, among others, and plan to continue filming throughout the year across the country. Abby is a producer and director as well as a long-time fan of comedy. She started the Hamptons Comedy Festival and founded Comedy Fights Cancer, a non-profit that produces comedy shows at hospitals. Brent is a producer and director and the man behind The Souls of New York. He’s always enjoyed stand-up, and after hearing bits of Comic Strip lore and seeing clips of vintage sets that have never been published, he knew there was a film here. The pair’s combination of inspiration, talent, and hard work is the same sort of alchemy that has propelled the Club to greatness—as well as what will drive the narrative of this film.
Eat, Drink, Laugh is slated for release in 2011, to coincide with the Comic Strip’s 35th anniversary. Check back here, at Eighty-Second & 2nd for all the latest updates and behind the scenes footage. For more information on Eat, Drink, Laugh, become a fan on Facebook and follow it on Twitter.