Category Archives: Event

15 MINUTES WITH A POWER BROKER (presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund)

THIS IS ONE OF OUR MOST POPULAR EVENTS AT COMEDYPRO!

*PLEASE NOTE that meeting spots are limited and need to be booked in advance on a first-come, first-served basis. Additional information about the program will be sent after pass purchase. You will also receive an e-mail during the week of July 9-13 to advise you of when and how to schedule your meetings with top executives.*

The purchase of an Industry, Industry PLUS, or Express Pass includes access to our 15 Minutes with a Power Broker program, which is presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund.

JFL ComedyPRO Delegates can sign up for up to three, one-on-one private meetings with the comedy industry’s leading digital, web and TV executives. Each meeting lasts 15 minutes and provides unprecedented access to development, production and programming professionals.

Confirmed Power Brokers include:

Above Average
Nathan Kloke (Head of Production)

Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
Louis Calabro (Vice President, Programming)

Amazon Studios
Gina Kwon (Co-Head of Comedy/Half-Hour TV)

Audible
Millicent Jefferson (Supervising Producer)
Jim Colgan (Executive Producer)

Bell Media
Kevin Barton (Program Director, SnackableTV)
Sarah Fowlie (Director, Comedy Original Programming)
Chris Kelley (Production Executive, Comedy)
Mike McShane (Director, Business and Partnerships)
Justin Stockman (Vice-President, Pay and OTT Services)
Sarah Weaver (Director of Programming, Specialty Channels)

CBS Television Studios
Alec Botnick (SVP Comedy Development)

FOX Broadcasting Company
Samata Narra (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming)
Jonathan Gabay (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming

HBO
Ada Chiaghana (Director of Original Programming)

Hulu
Billy Rosenberg (Director and Head of Comedy Originals)

IFP
Amy Dotson (Deputy Director & Head of Programming

Just For Laughs
Reaghan Gittin (Director, Digital Business Development)
– Blake Gregory (Producer and Business Development Manager)

Mitú
Gina Reyes (Vice President, Scripted Development)

NBC Entertainment
David Sleven (Vice President, Comedy Development)

Powderkeg
Kesila Childers (Vice President, Development)
Laura Fischer (CEO)

Project 10 Productions Inc.
Andrew Barnsley (President and Executive Producer)

Pygmy Wolf Productions.
K.P. Anderson (President/CEO)

Stoopid Buddy Stoodios
Spencer Griffin (Creative Executive)

TBS
Colin Davis (Senior Director, Original Programming)
Ashley Golden (Director, Original Programming

Tubefilter
Drew Baldwin (Founder and CEO)

Warner Brothers Animation
Peter Girardi (Executive Vice President, Blue Ribbon Content and Alternative Programming)

YouTube Originals
Ben Relles (Head  of Unscripted Comedy)

+ additional Power Brokers to be added soon!

 

MARK FORWARD & REBECCA KOHLER’S “OH COMEDY!” A CANADIAN PERSPECTIVE

Fact: more than ever before, Canadian comedians and comedy content are being consumed here and around the globe. But don’t take our word for it … take Mark Forward’s and Rebecca Kohler’s words. Yes, Canadian comedy is so strong, we “double-doubled” down on two crazy Canucks for this year’s “Oh Comedy!” address. Last year, comedian, actor, and gadabout Mark Forward – a familiar face from stand-up world and TV land (including Letterkenny, Mr. D., and Fargo) – brought us his incisive insight and curmudgeonly commentary. This year, Mark is joined by Rebecca Kohler, who happens to also be a stand-up comedian and a writer on three of the biggest hits of the past year (maybe you’ve heard of Schitt’s Creek, Workin’ Moms, and Kim’s Convenience?). Together, they examine the many highs and occasional lows of the business of funny north of the 49th parallel, and try to put a figure on how much Canadian comedy actually contributes to our GDP. (Spoiler alert: it’s 95%.)

SH*T THEY DON’T TELL YOU (presented by Studio 71)

In Sh*t They Don’t Tell You, Nikki Limo and Steve Greene do a deep dive into common relatable topics that either they or their guests wish someone would have told them more about before they had to learn it the hard way.

These subjects can cover just about anything (Relationships, Finances, Travel, Mental Health, etc.), and really dig into society’s expectation vs. the reality of it all. Each episode offers a balance of comedic insight, opinions and theories, as well as some researched material to bounce off of.

Guests can range from YouTubers, celebrities, as well as experts in particular fields corresponding to their specific topics.

IN SHORT SUPPLY? COMEDY AND DIVERSITY ON THE WEB

Thanks to the proliferation of platforms, short form is a breeding ground for new voices in comedy and provides new opportunities for diverse content creators to have their work seen. But do today’s popular web series and artists truly reflect the representation of their global audience? Are we seeing different cultures and different faces in our feeds? Is this true of the differently-abled, the gender-fluid, and the culturally-diverse? Are the success stories rooted in a large and loyal but niche audience, or have they successfully crossed over to the broader, comedy-consuming public? Progress is promising, but only when it’s to the inclusion of everyone, and in this session, some of today’s biggest online comedy executives discuss how their platforms, and how the internet in general, has responded to the call for inclusivity.

Moderator: Zain Meghji (Head of Video Content, Daily Hive)

Panelists:
Jennifer Danielson (Senior VP, Digital, Comedy Central)
Laura Fischer (CEO, Powderkeg)
Gina Reyes (Vice President, Scripted Development, Mitú)

2 DRINK MINIMUM

Join comedians Mike Ward & Pantelis for a hilarious and uncensored take on the week’s hot topics. As the first and only Canadian show on New York’s Compound Media, 2DM is holding up the free speech flag for an entire nation. Surprise guests, alcoholism and questionable life decisions are what make 2 Drink Minimum the best way to start your weekend.

Guests:
Nick Swardson
Robert Kelly

STAND UP & PITCH 2018 – BEYOND THE BOX: PLAYING IT SHORT (presented by Some Spider Studios in association with Tubefilter)

Some Spider Studios is joining forces with Tubefilter and Just For Laughs in search of the funniest, most innovative digital-first (or short-form) comedy content. In the entertainment industry’s ever-changing environment, digital-first content has found its home on the web, video streaming services, and social media platforms. In the “Playing It Short” Pitch Program, five teams with iron-clad concepts and backbones of steel have been selected to pitch their ideas to a panel of hard-nosed comedy experts.

The winner of the Beyond The Box: Playing It Short pitch session will be invited back to the 2019 edition of  Just For Laughs ComedyPRO. He/she will receive one (1) free trip to the 2019 edition of the festival, including one flight, a hotel room for up to three (3) nights, and a festival pass.

There will also be a 15-minute open question period at the end of the session.

Moderator: Drew Baldwin (Founder and CEO, Tubefilter)

Panelists:
Kesila Childers (VP, Development, Powderkeg)
Spencer Griffin (Creative Executive, stoopid buddy stoodios)
Chris Kelley (Production Executive, Comedy, Bell Media)
Nathan Kloke (Head of Production, Above Average)
Peter Putka (Executive Producer, Development & Production, Some Spider Studios)
Ben Relles (Head of Unscripted Comedy, YouTube Originals)

Finalists:
Thomas Conway and Dominic Kardasiewicz, Illegal Alien
Luke Jarvis and Rob Pooley, Justice for Alma
Brittany Tomkin and Jorja Hudson, Myrtle & Willoughby
Louie Torrellas and Ernie Bustamante, New Lou
Ryan George, Owen From The Woods

Click here to learn about the teams and their projects.

CHAOTIC CREATIVE WITH ZAIN MEGHJI

CHAOTIC CREATIVE: INTERVIEWS ABOUT IRRITATIONS AND INSPIRATIONS IN THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY

Host Zain Meghji interviews performing artists as they navigate their creative career in the entertainment industry, from inspiration to ideation to execution, and the internal and external challenges that go along with “making it until you make it.”

Guest: Sabrina Jalees

GLOBAL LAUGHTER: PERSPECTIVES ON INTERNATIONAL COMEDY (PRESENTED BY NETFLIX)

Comedy is built on different perspectives: what’s funny and acceptable in one club in one city, for example, may not fly in another. Now let’s apply that on a worldwide scale… Do the same things that make people laugh in North America resonate with a European, Asian, African or Middle Eastern audience, or does certain comedy get lost in translation? Today, we’ll talk to some intrepid travelling comedians who tell us how they measure the collective pulse of their audience in wildly different countries. This panel of internationally-known comedians will focus on their craft, how they adapt their material (if at all) in their travels, and how they continue to keep audiences roaring around the globe.

Moderator: Richard Crouse (Pop Life)

Panelists:
Rachid Badouri
Urzila Carlson
Loyiso Gola
Maz Jobrani
Nish Kumar
DeAnne Smith

KILL TONY

The #1 Live Weekly Podcast in the World! Tony Hinchcliffe hosts his wildly popular podcast with his co-host Brian Redban. Rising young up and coming comics or failing older comics get their name pulled out of a bucket, do one minute of material each, and then Tony and his two weekly friends/guests give feedback, extra material, and ask questions to the young performers always leading to a hilarious debacle. Pasts guests include Joe Rogan, Sarah Silverman, Doug Benson, Jeff Ross, and Russell Peters. Kill Tony episodes can be found at deathsquad.tv and on iTunes.

Guest:
Jimmy Carr

NEW FACES OF COMEDY: GROUP 1 (PRESENTED BY PRIME VIDEO)

Every year, Just For Laughs chooses the most promising up and comers to feature in New Faces of Comedy, and the show never disappoints. The stand-up superstars that have been born at Just For Laughs’ New Faces of Comedy include Amy Schumer, Hannibal Buress, Demetri Martin, and Kevin Hart. Come see the genuinely thrilling moment a young comic steps up and becomes a star!

Please note that New Faces of Comedy Group 1 will perform on the 7:00 PM show. New Faces of Comedy Group 2 will perform on the 9:30 PM show.

Host: Alonzo Bodden

New Faces of Comedy 2018:
Rosebud Baker, Emmy Blotnick, Joel Boyd, JC Currais, Rocky Dale Davis, Robert Dean, Kenny DeForest, Kellen Erskine, Jourdain Fisher, Simon Gibson, Mekki Leeper, Zach Noe Towers, Erica Rhodes, Paris Sashay, Usama Siddiquee, Daphnique Springs, Nina Tarr, Ron Taylor, Jordan Temple and Jeremiah Watkins

NEW FACES OF COMEDY: GROUP 2 (PRESENTED BY PRIME VIDEO)

Every year, Just For Laughs chooses the most promising up and comers to feature in New Faces of Comedy, and the show never disappoints. The stand-up superstars that have been born at Just For Laughs’ New Faces of Comedy include Amy Schumer, Hannibal Buress, Demetri Martin and Kevin Hart. Come see the genuinely thrilling moment a young comic steps up and becomes a star!

Please note that New Faces of Comedy Group 1 will perform on the 7:00 PM show. New Faces of Comedy Group 2 will perform on the 9:30 PM show.

Host: Alonzo Bodden

New Faces of Comedy 2018:
Rosebud Baker
Emmy Blotnick
Joel Boyd
JC Currais
Rocky Dale Davis
Robert Dean
Kenny DeForest
Kellen Erskine
Jourdain Fisher
Simon Gibson
Mekki Leeper
Zach Noe Towers
Erica Rhodes
Paris Sashay
Usama Siddiquee
Daphnique Springs
Nina Tarr
Ron Taylor
Jordan Temple
Jeremiah Watkins

15 MINUTES WITH A POWER BROKER (presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund)

THIS IS ONE OF OUR MOST POPULAR EVENTS AT COMEDYPRO!

*PLEASE NOTE that meeting spots are limited and need to be booked in advance on a first-come, first-served basis. Additional information about the program will be sent after pass purchase. You will also receive an e-mail during the week of July 9-13 to advise you of when and how to schedule your meetings with top executives.*

The purchase of an Industry, Industry PLUS, or Express Pass includes access to our 15 Minutes with a Power Broker program, which is presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund.

JFL ComedyPRO Delegates can sign up for up to three, one-on-one private meetings with the comedy industry’s leading digital, web and TV executives. Each meeting lasts 15 minutes and provides unprecedented access to development, production and programming professionals.

Confirmed Power Brokers include:

Above Average
Nathan Kloke (Head of Production)

Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
Louis Calabro (Vice President, Programming)

Amazon Studios
Gina Kwon (Co-Head of Comedy/Half-Hour TV)

Audible
Millicent Jefferson (Supervising Producer)
Jim Colgan (Executive Producer)

Bell Media
Kevin Barton (Program Director, SnackableTV)
Sarah Fowlie (Director, Comedy Original Programming)
Chris Kelley (Production Executive, Comedy)
Mike McShane (Director, Business and Partnerships)
Justin Stockman (Vice-President, Pay and OTT Services)
Sarah Weaver (Director of Programming, Specialty Channels)

CBS Television Studios
Alec Botnick (SVP Comedy Development)

FOX Broadcasting Company
Samata Narra (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming)
Jonathan Gabay (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming

HBO
Ada Chiaghana (Director of Original Programming)

Hulu
Billy Rosenberg (Director and Head of Comedy Originals)

IFP
Amy Dotson (Deputy Director & Head of Programming

Just For Laughs
Reaghan Gittin (Director, Digital Business Development)
– Blake Gregory (Producer and Business Development Manager)

Mitú
Gina Reyes (Vice President, Scripted Development)

NBC Entertainment
David Sleven (Vice President, Comedy Development)

Powderkeg
Kesila Childers (Vice President, Development)
Laura Fischer (CEO)

Project 10 Productions Inc.
Andrew Barnsley (President and Executive Producer)

Pygmy Wolf Productions.
K.P. Anderson (President/CEO)

Stoopid Buddy Stoodios
Spencer Griffin (Creative Executive)

TBS
Colin Davis (Senior Director, Original Programming)
Ashley Golden (Director, Original Programming

Tubefilter
Drew Baldwin (Founder and CEO)

Warner Brothers Animation
Peter Girardi (Executive Vice President, Blue Ribbon Content and Alternative Programming)

YouTube Originals
Ben Relles (Head  of Unscripted Comedy)

+ additional Power Brokers to be added soon!

CBC COMEDY ORIGINALS PITCH PROGRAM

CBC Comedy and Just For Laughs have once again teamed up to present the CBC Comedy Originals Pitch Program – an open-forum pitch program for Canadian citizens or permanent residents. 

The CBC Comedy Originals Pitch Program offers five creator/producer teams the opportunity to pitch their original web or TV concepts to a panel of senior development executives and key creatives from CBC Comedy.

The winner of the CBC Comedy Originals pitch session will be invited back to the 2019 edition of Just For Laughs ComedyPro. He/she will receive one (1) free trip to the 2019 edition of the Just For Laughs Festival, including flight, a hotel room for up to three (3) nights, and a festival pass.

CBC is a longtime partner of Just For Laughs ComedyPRO, having discovered both new TV and digital-facing series such as How To Buy A BabyNewborn MomsMy 90-Year-Old Roommate and the upcoming Diversity League at Stand Up & Pitch.

Moderator: Louis Calabro (Vice President, Programming, Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television)

Panelists:
Michelle Daly (Senior Director, Comedy, CBC Scripted Content, English Services)
Zach Feldberg (Executive in Charge of Production, Digital Originals, CBC)
Becky Johnson (Second City, Space Riders: Division Earth)
Kris Siddiqi (The Amazing Gayl Pile, Baroness Von Sketch Show)

Finalists:
Leah Cameron and Natalie Novak, The Communists’ Daughter
Leonard Chan, Forever Home
Nadine Djoury and Aimee Ambroziak, Hudson Heights
Foad HP, Off Colour
Adelade LaFontaine, Tinder Tales

Click here to learn about the teams and their projects.

NEW FACES OF COMEDY: CREATORS (PRESENTED BY PRIME VIDEO)

New Faces: Creators is a showcase of the up-and-coming influencers & creators who, through digital content creation, are contributing to the evolution of the comedy landscape as we know it!

Moderater: Scott Rogowsky (HQ Trivia, Running Late)

New Faces of Comedy 2018 Creators:
Abby Feldman
Anwar Jibawi
Manon Mathews
Frankie Quiñones
Josh Ruben
Molly Schreiber
Alan Wagner and Sydney Marquez

COMEDY CLUB BOOKERS: THE GATEKEEPERS OF COMEDY

Through all the changes and upheaval in the media landscape, the comedy club is still alive and well. But questions remain. How will clubs continue to thrive in an age where mobile devices and streaming media make it easier for people to watch their favorite comedians without leaving home? Are digital creators the new comedy stars or will traditional stand-ups continue to draw the biggest crowds at clubs? Is killing in a live showroom as critical to a comic’s career as having a big social media following? Can those achievements be mutually exclusive? Is there still room for club growth and expansion? If you build it, will the audience come? These four bookers will answer these questions and more plus share what they look for in talent – both up-and-comers and headliners – as well as the trends they’ve observed, the roles they play at the grass-roots level, and how they handle the tectonic shifts of the live comedy industry. Unlike the clubs, we have no two-drink minimum. But just like the clubs, heckling is highly discouraged.

Moderator: Jeff Singer (TV Producer/US Talent Scout, Just For Laughs)

Panelists:
Mark Breslin (CEO/Founder, Yuk Yuk’s Inc.)
Wende Curtis (CEO, Comedy Works)
Marc Grossman (Owner, Helium Comedy Club)
Erin Von Schonfeldt (EVP, Talent, Levity Live)

YOU KNOW WHAT DUDE!

Did you ever go to a comedy club and see the comics at the back table laughing hysterically? Did you ever wish you could hear what they were talking about? Hosted by Robert Kelly, You Know What Dude provides you a seat at that table as comedians new and old try to one up and out wit each other. Credits don’t matter here. No topics, no filter, a true comic hang. The You Know What Dude podcast with Robert Kelly… oh, and it’s funny as hell.

Guests:
Gary Gulman
Chris Distefano

Bell Media: The Multi-Channel Approach to Comedy

From JusReign to LETTERKENNY to Trevor Noah, Bell Media is focused on comedy for the future. With more ways than ever to showcase comedy across multiple platforms, Bell Media is at the forefront, giving consumers access to really short-, short-, and long-form content through their many outlets. Go inside the boardroom as executives from Bell Media discuss these multi-channel opportunities across CraveTV, Much Studios, Snackable, and CTV… and share success stories from the past year.

Moderator: Mike Veerman (Host, The Mike on Much Podcast)

Panelists:
Kevin Barton (Program Director, SnackableTV, Bell Media)
Sarah Fowlie (Director, Comedy Original Programming, Bell Media)
Mike McShane (Director, Business and Partnerships, Bell Media)
Justin Stockman (Vice-President, Pay and OTT Services, Bell Media)

KEYNOTE ADDRESS BY KENYA BARRIS

Kenya Barris made the transition from reality show creator (with America’s Next Top Model) to successful screenwriter and sitcom showrunner. We’re delighted to welcome back to Montreal last year’s “Just For Laughs Comedy Writer of the Year” to deliver the JFL Keynote Address at ComedyPRO. With his hit TV show Black-ish nearing the magical 100-episode milestone, recent spin-off Grown-ish blossoming into a hit, and high-profile upcoming projects like the new Shaft reboot, Kenya is well-placed to offer up his outspoken observances and opinions to anyone who thinks they’re an expert in comedy.

GOOD ONE: A PODCAST ABOUT JOKES

Good One: A Podcast About Jokes is a podcast about, well, jokes and those who tell them. Each episode, a comedian/writer/director comes on to play and then talk about the history/process/comedic philosophy behind their best jokes.

Host: Jesse David Fox (Senior Editor, Vulture)

Guest: Will Forte

LAUGHING YOUR WAY TO SUCCESS: A FOCUS ON COMEDY PROGRAMMING FOR TV

It seems like more TV networks and cable outlets are specializing in comedy lately: HBO, FOX, NBC, CBS, truTV, TBS, and IFC have all stepped up their comedy production and acquisition. Is being funny the fastest route to being a surefire money-maker? Is comedy cheaper/easier/faster/more lucrative than drama or reality? Is it the social aspect of comedy fans engaging more with comedy stars? Are comedies better for advertisers? And have the lines between drama and comedy blurred so much that dramedies and dark comedies are the new normal? In this panel, we’ll learn how comedy makes dollars and sense in this fragmented media market.

Moderator: Richard Crouse (Host of the CTV talk show Pop Life)

Panelists:
K.P. Anderson (President/CEO, Pygmy Wolf Productions, Ltd.)
Alec Botnick (SVP Comedy Development, CBS Television Studios)
Colin Davis (Senior Director, Comedy Programming & Development, TBS)
Samata Narra (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming, FOX)
David Sleven (VP, Comedy Development, NBC)
Christine Walters (Executive Producer, Original Programming & Development, truTV)

truTV

ANTHONY ATAMANUIK’S MAKE CANADA AMERICA AGAIN! THE TRUMP RALLY

Now that President Trump has Made America Great Again. he’s turned his sights towards the Great White North. Please join President Trump as he addresses the Canadian people. Open your hearts and your Polka Dot Doors to him. This President is No Frills, he’s just a guy that’s Yonge at heart. Weren’t those fun Canadian references?

Starring: Anthony Atamanuik (The President Show)

In Conversation with Cameron Esposito: Rape Jokes & Resilience

Last month, Cameron Esposito released her new special, Rape Jokes, online, for free, asking only for donations to RAINN, a sexual assault charity. A personal exploration of the #MeToo movement, the show was self-financed with the help of friends who donated their time. Within 24 hours, Cameron and her Rape Jokes were being showered with praise. The “unapologetically hard-hitting, bracingly timely hour” (Vanity Fair) was hailed as “blistering, masterful, tragic, hilarious” (New York Magazine) and the “first great stand-up set of the #MeToo era” (The Daily Beast). This afternoon,  Cameron opens up about the show and the reaction she’s received since it went viral.

Moderator: Liz Shannon Miller

JFL/THRULINE TELEVISION STAGED READINGS

Comedies are undergoing a remarkable resurgence and Just For Laughs, in partnership with Thruline Television, is looking to find the next big hit! At the JFL/Thruline Television Staged Readings, one of today’s top unproduced and unencumbered scripts will be brought to life by an all-star cast of actors and comedians.

Directed by: Jeremy Garelick

Comedy’s Great Debate: New York vs. Los Angeles with Ron Bennington (SIRIUSXM)

Comedians come from all over the world to perform comedy at Just for Laughs, with the large majority of the headliners hailing from New York City or Los Angeles. It’s the great debate that almost every comedian has considered at some point in their career. Should I move to LA? Should I move to NYC?

SiriusXM host Ron Bennington will moderate a conversation with a panel of some of the best headliners who call New York or Los Angeles home to settle the question of which city offers a better experience in stand-up comedy.

Host: Ron Bennington

Guests
:
Doug Benson
Laurie Kilmartin
Jim Norton
Big Jay Oakerson
Ari Shaffir
Brad Williams

VARIETY’S “10 COMICS TO WATCH” COCKTAIL (PRESENTED BY COHEN GARDNER LLP)

Variety’s newly-annointed “10 Comics To Watch” will be presented at this exclusive cocktail party brought to you by Variety and Cohen Gardner LLP.

2018 Variety “10 Comics To Watch” *

Joel Kim Booster
Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle
Sam Jay
Darren Knight
Hari Kondabolu
Amanda Seales
Dulce Sloan
Taylor Tomlinson
Julio Torres
Jaboukie Young-White

*Not all artists are guaranteed to be in attendance.

LAUGH OUT LOUD PRESENTS JUST FOR LAUGHS EAT MY SHORTS

Eat My Shorts is back! Kevin Hart’s Laugh Out Loud Network joins forces with the Just For Laughs Festival and the Phi Centre for an evening of the funniest new short films from across the US and Canada.

After hundreds of submissions, the five films curated by Laugh Out Loud, Just For Laughs, and online fans receive the big-screen treatment at the Just For Laughs Festival, July 26 at the Phi Centre.

Before tonight is over, one winning filmmaker will receive exclusive distribution of their short film on Laugh Out Loud, as well as a first-look deal.

Plus, get an exclusive insider’s perspective on what’s trending with Heather Johns, Laugh Out Loud’s VP of Content and Business Development, as she reveals what they look for from their creative partners.


The top five finalists, in alphabetical order, are:

THE APPLICATION
Director: Brenda Saucedo
Have you realized that dating is the same process as applying for a job? Let Chris explain this to you…

CURIOUS GEORGINA
Director: Feraz Ozel
Georgina finally explores her lifelong curiosity about dating women, despite her Korean family pressure to get married and have kids. But she’s bad at picking up ladies. Like, scary bad.

FOWL PLAY
Directors: Rachel Cairns, Brendan Jeffers
A world-renowned boy band must confront one of their members about his very serious addiction – to chicken.

SWEET REVENGE
Director: Pascal Atuma
The Jewish culture and the African clash for love. The parents and grandparents do not want the relationship to exist, but what do you do when the kids are in love?

WORRY WARTS
Directors: Laura Rudnicki, Lexy Pazul
A young woman calls her best friend from the doctor’s office of the free clinic while she nervously waits for her test results.

15 MINUTES WITH A POWER BROKER (presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund)

THIS IS ONE OF OUR MOST POPULAR EVENTS AT COMEDYPRO!

*PLEASE NOTE that meeting spots are limited and need to be booked in advance on a first-come, first-served basis. Additional information about the program will be sent after pass purchase. You will also receive an e-mail during the week of July 9-13 to advise you of when and how to schedule your meetings with top executives.*

The purchase of an Industry, Industry PLUS, or Express Pass includes access to our 15 Minutes with a Power Broker program, which is presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund.

JFL ComedyPRO Delegates can sign up for up to three, one-on-one private meetings with the comedy industry’s leading digital, web and TV executives. Each meeting lasts 15 minutes and provides unprecedented access to development, production and programming professionals.

Confirmed Power Brokers include:

Above Average
Nathan Kloke (Head of Production)

Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
Louis Calabro (Vice President, Programming)

Amazon Studios
Gina Kwon (Co-Head of Comedy/Half-Hour TV)

Audible
Millicent Jefferson (Supervising Producer)
Jim Colgan (Executive Producer)

Bell Media
Kevin Barton (Program Director, SnackableTV)
Sarah Fowlie (Director, Comedy Original Programming)
Chris Kelley (Production Executive, Comedy)
Mike McShane (Director, Business and Partnerships)
Justin Stockman (Vice-President, Pay and OTT Services)
Sarah Weaver (Director of Programming, Specialty Channels)

CBS Television Studios
Alec Botnick (SVP Comedy Development)

FOX Broadcasting Company
Samata Narra (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming)
Jonathan Gabay (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming

HBO
Ada Chiaghana (Director of Original Programming)

Hulu
Billy Rosenberg (Director and Head of Comedy Originals)

IFP
Amy Dotson (Deputy Director & Head of Programming

Just For Laughs
Reaghan Gittin (Director, Digital Business Development)
– Blake Gregory (Producer and Business Development Manager)

Mitú
Gina Reyes (Vice President, Scripted Development)

NBC Entertainment
David Sleven (Vice President, Comedy Development)

Powderkeg
Kesila Childers (Vice President, Development)
Laura Fischer (CEO)

Project 10 Productions Inc.
Andrew Barnsley (President and Executive Producer)

Pygmy Wolf Productions.
K.P. Anderson (President/CEO)

Stoopid Buddy Stoodios
Spencer Griffin (Creative Executive)

TBS
Colin Davis (Senior Director, Original Programming)
Ashley Golden (Director, Original Programming

Tubefilter
Drew Baldwin (Founder and CEO)

Warner Brothers Animation
Peter Girardi (Executive Vice President, Blue Ribbon Content and Alternative Programming)

YouTube Originals
Ben Relles (Head  of Unscripted Comedy)

+ additional Power Brokers to be added soon!

STAND UP & PITCH 2018 – FROM SET TO SCREEN: TV, OTT, SVOD AND MORE (PRESENTED BY PROJECT 10 IN ASSOCATION WITH THE IFP)

Just For Laughs and the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) showcase five new program ideas presented by the comedians, writers, and sketch performers who created them. Presented by Project 10 Productions, “From Set to Screen” is an open-pitch format that invites selected participants to pitch their projects to a panel of industry experts.  Some of the world’s most beloved shows have stemmed from comedy performers – from classic television like Roseanne and Seinfeld to more current programming ranging from Netflix’s Master of None and Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer, to IFC’s Comedy Bang! Bang! and Amazon’s Transparent. The history of comedy has been built and sustained by the performers themselves, and we’re in search of the next big thing: a show that can uniquely translate a comedic voice to the small screen, be it scripted or unscripted programming.

One winning project will be welcomed as a participant in IFP Week, as a selected project for presentation or guest of the event. IFP Week takes place September 15 to 20, 2018, at the Made in NY Media Center in New York City. Participation does not include travel or accommodations. IFP Week is a week of meetings, screenings, talks, meet-ups, exhibitions, and tours centered on cutting-edge independent content for the big screen, small screen and Internet. Additionally, the winner will be invited back to the 2019 edition of  Just For Laughs ComedyPRO. He/she will receive one (1) free trip to the 2019 edition of the festival, including one flight, a hotel room for up to three (3) nights, and a festival pass.

There will also be a 15-minute open question period at the end of the session.

Opening Remarks: Amy Dotson (Deputy Director & Head of Programming, IFP)

Moderator: Andrew Barnsley (President and Executive Producer, Project 10 Productions)

Panelists:
Ada Chiaghana (Director, Original Programming , HBO)
Jonathan Gabay (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development & Programming, FOX Broadcasting Company)
Ashley Golden (Director, Orginial Programming, TBS)
Gina Kwon (Co-Head of Comedy/Half-hour TV, Amazon Studios)
Billy Rosenberg (Director and Head of Comedy Originals, Hulu)
Sarah Weaver (Director, Programming & Planning, Specialty Channels, Bell Media)

Finalists:
Adriano Valentini, The Age Of Insecurity
David Taylor, Barnum
Joe Abel and Dwayne Perkins, Black Republican
Stefan Brogren and Michelle Shaughnessy, Spinsters
Leslie Rathe, Tethered

Click here to learn about the teams and their projects.

FUNNY BRUNCH

Start off another big day of comedy with a big buffet! Discuss comedy while enjoying a free lunch with your fellow ComedyPRO delegates. Who knows, your future collaborator might even be sitting right across the table from you…

VARIETY “10 COMICS TO WATCH” UNCENSORED 2018 (PRESENTED BY COHEN GARDNER LLP)

Sit down with Variety’s 2018 “10 Comics to Watch” for an hour of pure, uncensored, and honest conversation about comedy. Back for a seventh year, this panel is easily one of the most amusingly revealing hours you’ll spend at the festival. We get the 10 best and brightest comics of the year together and encourage them to reflect on how they pulled it off, and where they go from here. With each success story comes a trail of ups and downs, lefts and rights, so hear about the industry from their perspective – struggles, epiphanies, breakthroughs, crashes – the whole nine yards.

Moderator: Jenelle Riley (Deputy Awards and Features Editor, Variety)

2018 Variety “10 Comics To Watch” *
Joel Kim Booster
Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle
Sam Jay
Darren Knight
Hari Kondabolu
Amanda Seales
Dulce Sloan
Taylor Tomlinson
Julio Torres
Jaboukie Young-White

*Not all artists are guaranteed to be in attendance.

INDUSTRY STANDARD W/ BARRY KATZ – SPECIAL GUEST: KENYA BARRIS

A one-of-a-kind insiders look at Hollywood from a totally different perspective. This inspirational weekly series provides an “all access pass” to the entertainment business through the eyes of comedy manager/producer Barry Katz and the industry’s biggest “behind the scenes” players who candidly reveal the risky decisions they made that led to the most groundbreaking internet, television, radio, music, and film content in the world. Combining humor, insight, and motivation; Katz provides the blueprint for the audience to take their careers to the next tier, while showcasing each guests’ extraordinary journey from humble beginnings to the highest levels in their field.

Special guest: Kenya Barris (Creator/Executive Producer, Black-ish)

CREATORS OF PRIMETIME ANIMATION

At one time, you’d be forgiven for thinking they’re just cartoons, but today, more than ever, animation is a ripe medium for satire. Today, meet the courageous creators, hard-working headwriters, and sleepless showrunners of today’s biggest animated comedy series. Discover the circumstances that led to your favorite show getting the green light, how the strong voices in front of the microphone and behind-the-scenes make these shows come to life, and how these shows break new ground, take no prisoners, and get away with their characters saying pretty much whatever they want.

Moderator: Jennifer Wolfe (Editor-In-Chief, Animation World Network)

Panelists:
Brent Butt (Corner Gas Animated, Bell Media)
Peter Girardi (Executive Vice President, Blue Ribbon Content and Alternative Programming, Warner Brothers Animation)
Mike Luciano (Animals., HBO)
Phil Matarese (Animals., HBO)
Patrick Meighan (Family Guy, Fox)
Danny Smith (Family Guy, Fox)

JUST FOR LAUGHS AWARDS SHOW (PRESENTED BY BELL)

The biggest players in comedy join us to celebrate the leading stars in the business at the 2018 Just for Laughs Awards Show! There are no cameras — no rules — no holds barred. It’s an unfiltered appreciation of the people who shone brightest this year, from the people who know them best … their friends, colleagues and fellow comics, and featuring some special guests and surprises.

Host: Alonzo Bodden

Award Recipients:

Tiffany Haddish: Comedy Person of the Year
Hannah Gadsby (Nanette): Comedy Special of the Year
Jo Koy: Stand-Up Comedian of the Year
Lil Rel Howery: Breakout Comedy Star of the Year
Liz Flahive and Carly Mensch (Glow): Comedy Writers of the Year

CHOSEN FAMILY

Chosen Family is an energetic podcast hosted by comedians Thomas Leblanc and Tranna Wintour that shines a light on the importance of community at the intersection of art, comedy, gender, and sexuality. Produced by the Phi Centre in Montreal, Chosen Family is a talk show that tells a story. Through a mix of long-form interviews with renowned artists, phone chats with celebrity friends, and comedy sketches, Thomas and Tranna playfully confront some of the show’s big questions: What does it mean to be a queer artist in 2018? How does one disseminate thoughtful work in a high-speed culture? Will Mariah Carey ever have another #1 hit?! Mixing high and low culture, Chosen Family is filled with great humour and heart with Thomas and Tranna’s electric friendship at its core. Together our hosts have reinvented the term soul mate for themselves and listeners are invited to do the same! Guests on the show have included: Jen Kirkman, Sandra Bernhard, Jena Friedman, and Matteo Lane (to name a few). Chosen Family ranked among the top 10 comedy podcasts in iTunes Canada, was listed as one of the best podcasts of 2017 by Ici Artv, was voted the number one Best Podcast in CultMTL, and was nominated for a 2018 Numix award for Best Podcast.

Guests to be announced soon!

THE TODD SHAPIRO SHOW (SIRIUSXM)

The Todd Shapiro Show is a daily live talk show featuring one of Canada’s most hilarious, original and beloved radio personalities. The show features a loaded rotation of Canadian and international personalities, from sports to music to comedy to whoever is hot in the news right now.

THE JACKIE AND LAURIE SHOW

The Jackie and Laurie Show stars two women in comedy, Jackie Kashian and Laurie Kilmartin, talking about women and comedy. No guests, just two headliners who started in the 80s and never stopped.

Follow @Jackiekashian and @anylaurie on Twitter.

Subscribe to The Jackie and Laurie Show on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

WATCH WHAT CRAPPENS PODCAST

Ben Mandelker and Ronnie Karam of Watch What Crappens—a podcast that revels in all things Bravo—are taking their highly rated and much beloved show on the road and are coming to CANADA! Crappens features the best friend duo discussing their favorite Bravo TV series and stars, and podcast listeners across the country can’t get enough of their brand of humor and witty takes. If you love Real Housewives, Southern Charm, Below Deck, Summer House, and Vanderpump Rules, come join Ben and Ronnie live in Montreal.

Guests: TBD

BEAUTIFUL STORIES FROM ANONYMOUS PEOPLE

Chris Gethard brings the Beautiful/Anonymous podcast live to the stage! Come see an episode of your favourite phone call based podcast unfold live, as he tweets out the number and takes the first call that comes in. Will it be funny? Sad? Strange? Any fan of the podcast knows it could be any or all of those – but whatever it is, we’re in it together.

Guests to be announced soon!

VARIETY “10 COMICS TO WATCH” 2018 SHOWCASE (PRESENTED BY COHEN GARDNER LLP)

One of the biggest events in the comedy world each year is Variety’s unveiling of their annual “10 Comics To Watch” feature. Catch the best and brightest “10 Comics To Watch” as they hit the stage and show you why they made the 2018 list.

Host: Chris Redd

2018 Variety “10 Comics To Watch” *

Joel Kim Booster
Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle
Sam Jay
Darren Knight
Hari Kondabolu
Amanda Seales
Dulce Sloan
Taylor Tomlinson
Julio Torres
Jaboukie Young-White

* Not all artists are guaranteed to be in attendance.

FUNNY OR DIE MIDNIGHT PARTY

After a grueling week of trekking around the city, making the rounds and watching the world’s best comedians leave it all out on stage, the comedy industry’s bevy of artists, managers, agents, casting executives and high-level network execs don’t need much of an excuse to cut loose. The FUNNY OR DIE Midnight Party is their chance to take advantage of an open bar, exclusive setting, delicious food, good music, unpretentious crowd – and perhaps each other?! No, no, we’d never suggest such a thing! The Midnight Party is a sure bet at a good time and the most talked-about party of the festival … only a schmuck would miss out!

15 MINUTES WITH A POWER BROKER (presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund)

THIS IS ONE OF OUR MOST POPULAR EVENTS AT COMEDYPRO!

*PLEASE NOTE that meeting spots are limited and need to be booked in advance on a first-come, first-served basis. Additional information about the program will be sent after pass purchase. You will also receive an e-mail during the week of July 9-13 to advise you of when and how to schedule your meetings with top executives.*

The purchase of an Industry, Industry PLUS, or Express Pass includes access to our 15 Minutes with a Power Broker program, which is presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund.

JFL ComedyPRO Delegates can sign up for up to three, one-on-one private meetings with the comedy industry’s leading digital, web and TV executives. Each meeting lasts 15 minutes and provides unprecedented access to development, production and programming professionals.

Confirmed Power Brokers include:

Above Average
Nathan Kloke (Head of Production)

Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
Louis Calabro (Vice President, Programming)

Amazon Studios
Gina Kwon (Co-Head of Comedy/Half-Hour TV)

Audible
Millicent Jefferson (Supervising Producer)
Jim Colgan (Executive Producer)

Bell Media
Kevin Barton (Program Director, SnackableTV)
Sarah Fowlie (Director, Comedy Original Programming)
Chris Kelley (Production Executive, Comedy)
Mike McShane (Director, Business and Partnerships)
Justin Stockman (Vice-President, Pay and OTT Services)
Sarah Weaver (Director of Programming, Specialty Channels)

CBS Television Studios
Alec Botnick (SVP Comedy Development)

FOX Broadcasting Company
Samata Narra (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming)
Jonathan Gabay (Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Programming

HBO
Ada Chiaghana (Director, Half Hour Programming)

Hulu
Billy Rosenberg (Director and Head of Comedy Originals)

IFP
Amy Dotson (Deputy Director & Head of Programming

Just For Laughs
Reaghan Gittin (Director, Digital Business Development)
– Blake Gregory (Producer and Business Development Manager)

Mitú
Gina Reyes (Vice President, Scripted Development)

NBC Entertainment
David Sleven (Vice President, Comedy Development)

Powderkeg
Kesila Childers (Vice President, Development)
Laura Fischer (CEO)

Project 10 Productions Inc.
Andrew Barnsley (President and Executive Producer)

Pygmy Wolf Productions.
K.P. Anderson (President/CEO)

Stoopid Buddy Stoodios
Spencer Griffin (Creative Executive)

TBS
Colin Davis (Senior Director, Original Programming)
Ashley Golden (Director, Original Programming

Tubefilter
Drew Baldwin (Founder and CEO)

Warner Brothers Animation
Peter Girardi (Executive Vice President, Blue Ribbon Content and Alternative Programming)

YouTube Originals
Ben Relles (Head  of Unscripted Comedy)

+ additional Power Brokers to be added soon!

Homophilia (presented by Earwolf)

Hosts Dave Holmes and Matt McConkey grill LGBT celebrities on what they’re loving, and who they’re loving. This queer comedy party celebrates pop culture obsessions and interrogates guests on their personal experiences with dating, sex and love. Recent guests include: Margaret Cho, Todd Glass, Samantha Ronson, Lena Waithe, Wilson Cruz, Trixie Mattel, and many more. For more info, visit earwolf.com/show/homophilia.

Guest:
Joel Kim Booster
Bryan Safi

POLITICAL COMEDY IN THE PRE-APOCALYPTIC WORLD

No doubt helped by a certain President of the United States, political satire is alive and thriving online, in late night television, and on stage. Taking sides means alienating the broadest potential audience, but comedians have never been afraid to stand up for what they believe is right. With a highly-engaged and hyper-aware audience, the socially-woke are taking solace in the court jesters who speak truth to power. Meet just a few of the fearless comics with strong opinions who find the funny in today’s world of instant news and deep political divide, against a neverending stream of scary headlines.

Moderator: Baratunde Thurston

Panelists:
Anthony Atamanuik
Judah Friedlander
Kliph Nesteroff
Gina Yashere

Off Book: The Improvised Musical Podcast (presented by Earwolf)

Every week Jessica McKenna and Zach Reino sit down with a fantastic guest and record a completely improvised musical in an attempt to combat the notion that musicals should be “carefully crafted” or “thought out at all.” This time they are doing it live! Accompanied by the incomparable Scott Passarella on the keys and produced by Earwolf.

THROWBACK HOSTED BY WANDA SYKES

Everybody had to start somewhere, right? Throwback is the new hit comedy show where top comedians throw caution to the wind and put ego aside as they take a look back at some of their barely-seen-before earliest stand up sets and offer brutally honest, hilarious critiques of their own performances. Joined on stage by comedy peers who knew them way back when, they will share stories and insights about first gigs, outdated jokes, memorable wardrobe and hair choices, and why they thought any of it was a good idea. They’ll be cracking open their comedy yearbooks with old friends in front of a room full of strangers…and nothing is off limits. The show was created by Page Hurwitz.

Hosted by: Wanda Sykes

Participants:
Fortune Feimster
Jo Koy
Matt Braunger

THROWING SHADE (presented by Earwolf)

Erin Gibson and Bryan Safi are the co-hosts and co-creators of the Throwing Shade podcast, their international touring live show, Funny or Die web series, and late-night show on TV Land. Every week Erin and Bryan give their fresh takes on pop culture, women’s issues, and LGBT issues with hilarity and vulgarity. Spend your Thursdays with the podcast Entertainment Weekly, Vulture, AVClub, Rolling Stone, Slate and The Guardian have listed as the top 10 funniest podcasts out there. Called “the perfect combination of silly, intelligent, cynical and charming” by EW, “funnier and raunchier than Bill Maher” by Fast Company, and “Oprah’s #1 pick” by an iTunes reviewer who is not Oprah, these two best friends give it to you like your super savvy brother and sister would. Can you handle it?

Guest:
Sabrina Jalees

DOUG LOVES MOVIES

Comedian Doug Benson (Super High Me and Comedy Central’s The High Court) hosts a podcast where he talks to his hilarious special surprise guests about his first love … movies! To have a chance at winning some prizes, bring a movie-themed name tag!

Guests to be announced soon!

LAS CULTURISTAS

LAS CULTURISTAS is a weekly podcast (and live show, “I DON’T THINK SO, HONEY”) hosted by Matt Rogers and Bowen Yang. It has been called “addictively bitchy” by Time Out New York and “an unstoppable force of charisma” by The A.V. Club. Las Culturistas was named one of Esquire’s “Top 10 Podcasts of 2017” and Time Out New York’s #1 Comedy Podcast. Their live format, “I DON’T THINK SO, HONEY” – featuring 50 comedians doing one-minute rants on any pop culture pest of their choosing – has been featured at the New York Comedy Festival and the Brooklyn Podcast Festival. In the words of Guy Branum (Pop Rocket): “Bowen Yang and Matt Rogers are fucking culture warriors and we don’t deserve them.”

Guest:
Dulcé Sloan

HOMEGROWN COMICS

K. Trevor Wilson, the star of the hit CraveTV series Letterkenny, returns to Just For Laughs this summer to host a celebration of Canadian comics and stand-up comedy in this year’s 20th edition of Homegrown Comics. A great Canadian comedy superstar himself, Wilson is the perfect guide to the brightest new comics specially chosen from coast to coast of The Great White North. Don’t miss your chance to root for the home team at JFL this year when Homegrown Comics will be taped for a future broadcast on The Comedy Network (so no late arrivals or early departures, please!)