With his posh accent, cozy comedy and vast income, Michael McIntyre is a love/hate figure in the U.K.: loved by audiences, hated by jealous rivals. It’s easy to see why they resent his cuddly middle-class shtick, with its whiff of self-satisfaction. But audiences lap up his commentary on the frustrations and humiliations of everyday life, delivered with gusto, bonhomie and a natural talent for physical comedy.
McIntyre paid his dues for years on the circuit, falling deeply into debt before making his breakthrough on TV panel shows and the BBC’s standup showcase “Live at the Apollo.”
His first two DVDs sold more than 2.5 million copies. The first, “Live and Laughing,” remains the top-selling debut standup DVD in the U.K., while his second, “Hello Wembley,” is the fastest-selling comedy DVD ever. His 2012 arena show, with 71 dates between August and December, is on course to challenge Peter Kay’s record for the U.K.’s top comedy tour, with more than 550,000 tickets sold to date.
On top of all that, McIntyre received more than $3 million from Penguin for his autobiography, also titled “Live and Laughing,” and was reportedly paid $400,000 for judging “Britain’s Got Talent.”