“The Daily Show” co-creator Madeleine Smithberg

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“The Daily Show” co-creator, Madeleine Smithberg talks about her amazing career in TV. From  Late Night With David Letterman to life after co-creating and running “The Daily Show.”

Madeleine give a lot of insight to the creative part of TV as well the harsh business practices. Talks about Jon Stewart changing the work atmosphere at “The Daily Show,” how she got David Spade to stop doing fat actress jokes and why Bloomberg TV rejected a very funny Julie Klasner.

She tells amazing stories about starting in live Italian TV, her one try at Reality to harsh and ridiculous network notes, to what she thinks of “The Daily Show’s” new host. Plus insights on her latest project “This Week in Black Twitter.”

Fans of TV and comedy will love her from a true insider.

We talked at her home in Valley with her son in the other room playing video games and her dog protecting us from lawn mowers and people taking out the trash.

In Madeleine’s living are her trophies for her years of work. A Peabody, an Emmy and a wax bust of David Letterman.

Madeleine Smithberg earned Peabody and Emmy Awards, and two other Emmy nominations, for Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, which she co-created and ran as executive producer for seven years. During her tenure, she was directly responsible for the hiring/casting of performers such as Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Steve Carell, Ed Helms, and Rob Corddry, Mo Rocca, Lewis Black, among others. She served as producer/show-runner for The Daily Show forerunner, The Jon Stewart Show, on MTV and later in syndication. She also brought her skills as executive producer and writer of The WB comedy/variety show Steve Harvey’s Big Time. She spent six years as a talent coordinator, then producer, for NBC’s original ’t Sleep! Hosted by T.J. Holmes.  

If you want more, here’s another interview with Madeleine. 

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“Solarbabies” by Mel Brooks? W/ Christian Finnegan

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Solarbabies was produced by Mel Brook’s film company. Comedian Christian Finnegan (“Best Week Ever”) joins us to talk about that classic 80’s post apocalyptic thriller… no not that one… the other one…no other other one…  “Solarbabies!”  Watch the movie here.

“Solarbabies” is film where orphans roller skate on sand and pray to a glowing bowling ball. (Well, when you put it that way, the movie sounds silly.) Lots of great actors got their start in “Solarbabies,” (James Legros, Luca Hass, Adrian Pasdar, Jamie Gertz, that guy from “Blow”  and a glowing bowling ball).  Also a couple of great actors finished there (A sleepwalking Charles Durning).

David Blaine – waitering secrets revealed. I talk about waiting tables in New Jersey with the future magician. He gave his secret for getting big tips…Lying.

Listen to the podcast to find out what famous comedian produced Solarbabies.

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Christian also talks about the myth of the “token white guy” and some of the great people he got to work with on “Are We There Yet?”

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