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Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier – Alan Zweibel, Abrams Books
“Comics and comedy fans alike will delight in this hilarious and self-deprecating memoir.” — Publisher’s Weekly
This zippy memoir by comedians’ comedian Zweibel (The Other Shulman) offers laughs on nearly every page. Though Zweibel’s name isn’t well known outside of comedy circles, he has worked with a who’s-who of stars, including Milton Berle and Larry David. A Jewish boy from Long Island, Zweibel started out in 1972 working in a deli in Queens and writing gags for Borscht Belt comics at $7 each. (For Rodney Dangerfield: “My mother wouldn’t breastfeed me. She said she liked me as a friend.”) Industriousness, luck, and a binder stuffed with 1,100 jokes got him on staff for Saturday Night Live’s inaugural season in 1975… Read more
Comedy Tonight: ‘S.N.L.’ Then and Now
By Bruce Haring
May 23, 2020 10:45am
Alan Zweibel was an original Saturday Night Live writer. He was the co-creator and producer of It’s Garry Shandling’s Show. He’s won multiple Emmy and Writers Guild awards, written 11 books and Tony-winning Broadway plays, and created a few films and TV shows.
Sure, you’re saying. But what has he done for us lately?
For starters, he’s... Read more
May 7, 2020
Alan Zweibel is on the line, and the guys talk about the quiet genius of Kate McKinnon. Alan also talks about his experiences in his early days of writing comedy, and taking a chance on a strange new show called ‘Saturday Night Live’. Later they discuss some of the classic SNL sketches, as well as Alan’s work on ‘It’s Garry Shandling’s Show’, and Shandling’s complicated personality. Before the break, the group also talks about Jeffrey Tambor’s ‘Me Too’ incident… Watch the two-part podcast here
April 27, 2020
THE BEST NEW BOOKS
“It’s the medicine we can all use right now” — People
E! Online selected Laugh Lines as one of the “10 Books Celebrities Love“
by CAROLIN LEHMANN | Mon., Apr. 6, 2020 3:17 PM
Laugh Lines by Alan Zweibel
A chat with the writer who penned punchlines for the original cast of Saturday Night Live, survived Roger Ebert’s most devastating burn, and may be the only guy in the biz to have been flashed by both Farrah Fawcett and Milton Berle.
April 20, 2020
Gilbert and Frank welcome back Emmy-winning comedy writer ALAN ZWEIBEL for a funny, freeform conversation about bad reviews, least-loved SNL hosts, feuding celebrity couples, unsung Catskills comedians and Alan’s new memoir, “Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier.” Also, Gilda Radner struggles with fame, Abe Vigoda plays an eskimo, Alan gets heckled by a young Bill Murray and Frank reveals his favorite “Saturday Night Live” sketch of all time. PLUS: “It’s Garry Shandling’s Show”! The craftsmanship of Alan King! The wit and wisdom of Herb Sargent! The REAL Broadway Danny Rose! And Alan remembers his friend, the late, great Buck Henry! Listen here
A new season of ‘Yellowstone’ hits Paramount Network, ‘Scare Package’ spills gallons of blood on Shudder and a comedy legend recommends Netflix’s ‘Middleditch & Schwartz’
An Expert Recommends: ‘Middleditch & Schwartz’
Alan Zweibel writes about his long career in comedy in his new memoir, “Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier.” Here, one of the original writers of “Saturday Night Live” recommends the work of David Mamet and the improv of “Middleditch & Schwartz.”
“I don’t generally like watching comedies because it’s something I do. I like dramatic things because it’s something that I can’t do. I couldn’t have written ‘Glengarry Glen Ross,’ for example, so I marvel at that part of the brain that David Mamet has that mine hasn’t developed. That said, I can’t recommend ‘Middleditch & Schwartz’ highly enough. It’s two guys on a bare stage who ask the audience for a suggestion, just like an improv group would. But they take that suggestion and, on their feet, ad-lib a coherent play based on what that suggestion is. Forever, people have been doing improvs. But the improvs, if you take ideas from the audience, are usually three, four or five-minute sketches. On Netflix, each special is almost an hour! And it is coherent and funny. They may say something, uh, let’s say seven minutes into it, which seems innocuous. And a half-hour later, they call it back for a big laugh. It’s the most spectacular thing.”
LIVE TALKS LA Alan Zweibel in conversation with Dave Barry about LAUGH LINES May 8, 2020
Alan Zweibel is a comedy writing legend whose memoir, Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier, is receiving well-deserved acclaim. It’s included in People magazine’s “The Best New Books” section and earned a positive review in The New York Times this weekend… Read more…
“Laugh Lines” is the candid, big-hearted story of a comedian’s comic.
TOP PICK MAY 31, 2020
He’s the guy who created Gilda Radner’s immortal Roseanne Roseannadanna. “Weekend Update”? Most of the original punch lines were his. He went on to collaborate with icons like Billy Crystal, Larry David and Garry Shandling. But Alan Zweibel wasn’t always a Tony- and Emmy Award-winning writer. Oh no. He got his start writing jokes for… Read more
May 29, 2020
If you love the early years of “Saturday Night Live” or are a fan of “It’s Garry Shandling’s Show” or “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” it’s likely because of Alan Zweibel! He started his comedy career selling jokes for seven dollars apiece to the last of the Borscht Belt standups. Then one night, despite bombing on stage, he caught the attention of Lorne Michaels and became one of the first writers at Saturday Night Live! Alan joined us to share stories from his illustrious career, including having a hand in a series of landmark shows—from “It’s Garry Shandling’s Show” to “Curb Your Enthusiasm” which he details in his new memoir: Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier. Watch here
May 25, 2020
Join Alan Zweibel and good friends Lewis Black, Susie Essman and Mary Karr for a hilarious evening talking about what makes us laugh from the script to the stage, in movies, and on TV… Watch here
Interview with Dan Pasternack
START OF ZOOM INTERVIEW DURING THE COVID-19 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC: On Alan’s latest book, Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People be Funnier, and the challenges of promoting a book during the pandemic; on the recent death of his mother and trying to find the funny in it all… Listen here
Alan Zweibel’s tender, funny memoir, LAUGH LINES, takes readers through his long career in the comedy-writing business and charts the story and changes in what made America laugh over the decades… Listen here
Every week, host Elvis Mitchell conducts in-depth interviews with the most innovative and influential people working in entertainment, art, and pop culture… Listen here
LOS ANGELES (AP) — You may not know it, but if you treasure the early years of “Saturday Night Live” or are a fan of “It’s Garry Shandling’s Show” or “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” Alan Zweibel makes you laugh.
In nearly 50 years and counting as a writer, Zweibel helped shape the tone of “SNL” and crafted TV and stage projects with Billy Crystal, Gilda Radner and Larry David… read more
Comedy writing legend Alan Zweibel is plugging his new book “Laugh Lines,” remotely, without book signings, and he tells of the occasional struggle with tech to Jefferson Graham. Listen here…
Zweibel, who’s also celebrating his new memoir, “Laugh Lines My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier,” joins us on Good Day Rochester via Zoom. Watch here
DAVE PLIER May 15, 2020
Legendary SNL Writer Alan Zweibel: ‘Laugh Lines, My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier’; Working with John Belushi, Gilda Radner, Garry Shandling, Billy Crystal, Larry David and More
Alan Zweibel, legendary writer and producer of the first seasons of Saturday Night Live’, ‘It’s Garry Shandling’s Show’, Curb Your Enthusiasm and more hangs with Dave to talk about his new book, ‘Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier’!
MAY 15, 2020 | 7:08AM|
Memory is a funny thing – and Alan Zweibel knows a bit about what’s funny.
Over his nearly 50 years writing comedy, Zweibel has worked with the likes of Bill Murray, Billy Crystal, David Letterman, Larry David, Dave Barry and more. Now he’s gone over his past with a fine-tooth comb to put together his autobiography Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier.
In a phone conversation promoting his upcoming virtual appearance on May 21, the writer explains his entry into penning his own history… Read more
Check out Alan in these wonderful documentaries. . .
“. . .But to those who knew him, the ‘real’ Garry Shandling, (like Alan did), understood he was a far more complex person. “
Watch Alan in Judd Apatow’s new HBO series The Zen Diaries of Garry Shandling.