*All of the ingredients were in place for Keenen Ivory Wayans to agree to come aboard Wanda Sykes’ rebooted “Last Comic Standing.”
With fellow comedic veterans Roseanne Barr and Russell Peters beside him on the judging panel, The “In Living Color” creator says joining the NBC show was a no-brainer.
“It’s a great job for each of us because we love comedy,” the 56-year-old told us. “Watching young comics and getting to find a star amongst them is exciting for all of us. And the people who are doing the show are people that we know, and we know they have an expertise in this area as well – Wanda Sykes and [co-producer] Page [Hurwitz]. Their collective, along with their vision of the show, got me to say yes.”
The competition was invitation only, so comics trying out had to be funny enough from jump to earn a spot in the audition rounds – another selling point for Keenan.
The judges will whittle the invited 100 to a Top 20, who will then compete in a semifinal round. The top 10 will advance into the challenge rounds, which has the comics competing in different comedy disciplines, such as sketch, improv and stand-up, proving themselves both individually and in teams.
Then the funniest of all will take the title of “Last Comic Standing,” as well as an NBC talent deal and a half-hour scripted project to be developed by Universal Television.
Below, Keenen says another component that got his attention was the absence of America’s vote.
“Last Comic Standing” airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on NBC. View some sets from the show below: