Expect Chaplin Award recipient Amy Schumer to embrace the cheeky humor — and sometimes raunchy speeches — that peppers the Britannias.
“Brits have successfully pushed the boundaries of comedy for many years, so fittingly the recipients of the Chaplin Award have pushed the boundaries of what can happen at an award show,” says Matthew Wiseman, COO of BAFTA/LA.
Sacha Baron Cohen’s 2013 homage to Chaplin imitated the icon’s walk with a cane before he stumbled and pushed offstage an old woman who had presented him with the cane. The gasps turned to laughs when the audience realized that she was really a stunt woman. “Chaplin himself was a performer known for classic moments of surprise, and our Britannia honorees over the years have certainly channeled that same spirit onstage,” Wiseman says.
BAFTA/LA board chairman Kieran Breen says, “Amy Schumer’s humor is known to light up the room, and even though she it seems like she arrived on the scene in the last few years, she’s really broken through in a huge way. Excellence is not the prerogative of the older generation.”
Adds the org’s CEO Chantal Rickards: “And the Brits love her. She came and accepted an award in the U.K. and again the acceptance speech was funny, cheeky, irreverent. She had the Brits eating out of her hands. So she’s sort of really hit home for us. And I think it’s a speech that we’ll all be sitting there going, ‘OK, here we go, lock in for the ride.’ ”
Whatever occurs at this year’s ceremony, Mike Berkowitz, exec producer of “Amy Schumer Live at the Apollo,” says she will continue to showcase her unfiltered honesty. “She is just, at her core, a real human being and when she has something to say, she’s going to say it.”