Stand-up comedy preps for packed interest

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The Future. Although culture is increasingly fractured, stand-up comedy may be bringing us together… and becoming one of the most popular and mainstream entertainment formats around. With comics now having more ways to boost their profiles and make money, we may be entering a new influencer era when discovering up-and-coming comedic talent reigns supreme.

Joke economy
Statista found the US comedy event market is worth $3.1 billion — up from $1.7 billion in 2017.

  • That’s been buoyed by stars like Sebastian Maniscalco (his tour made almost $45 million last year) and Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias (he sold out Dodger Stadium… and then booking it again)…
  • …and ascendant newcomers like Matt Rife (from going viral on TikTok to selling out a global tour in 48 hours) and Nate Bargatze (setting a streaming record on Amazon Prime with his special, Hello World).
  • And with comics expanding their brands across podcasts, film and TV, merch, and brand-ambassador deals, their earnings and influence are growing as much as their fanbases.

Deadline asked some top comedians like Bert Kreischer, Fortune Feimster, Fahim Anwar, and Andrew Santino what exactly is behind the surge in stand-up popularity. Answers ranged from comedy being the last bastion where people can say (almost) anything to the rise in social media and podcasting making access easier than ever. Appearances on SNL and late-night shows are still crown jewels, but they’re no longer needed as kingmakers.

One thing everyone can easily agree on is, in today’s climate, people are just looking for a good laugh.

David Vendrell

Born and raised a stone’s-throw away from the Everglades, David left the Florida swamp for the California desert. Over-caffeinated, he stares at his computer too long either writing the TFP newsletter or screenplays. He is repped by Anonymous Content.


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