Showbiz Solidarity for House Sit-In: Funny or Die Stages Stand-Up Marathon

As Democrats continued their sit-in on the floor of the House on Thursday, showbiz figures lined up in solidarity, with Funny or Die staging a marathon of standup comics that ran for about 10 hours until almost 4:30 a.m.

Showbiz figures have become increasingly vocal in calling for gun control, as groups like Everytown for Gun Safety and the Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence have tapped figures such as Julianne Moore, and have worked with shows like “House of Cards” and “The Good Wife” on storylines that delve into gun safety issues.

The House sit-in, led by Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), galvanized a new round of activity.

The Funny or Die marathon, which was shown live on Facebook, was shot at the site’s offices and featured a mix of comics and even an accountant who took part in the open mike.

“I just flew in from the South and boy are my firearms tired of killing innocent people,” said comic Alex Duong, to kick off the jokefest.

Owen Burke, Funny or Die’s editor in chief of content, said that they “just decided to do it and at Funny or Die we always try to be nimble especially with topical issues. So we called everybody we knew to come down and luckily people obliged.”

The comics appeared before a TV monitor displaying stars and stripes.

A spokeswoman for Funny or Die said that the marathon drew more than 200,000 views as of 10 p.m.

Julianne Moore, who leads a council of creative and entertainment figures for Everytown for Gun Safety, tweeted out messages reacting to Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Ill.), who adjourned the House for an Independence Day break before there could be any vote on gun legislation.

“It’s a new day in the People’s House. We’ve now begun work on additional funding in the fight against the #Zika threat,” Ryan wrote.

Moore tweeted back, “Gun violence claims 91 American lives a day, @SpeakerRyan.”

Amy Schumer also tweeted out support for the sit-in. After the shooting in Louisiana last summer at a theater showing her movie “Trainwreck,” she teamed up with one of her relatives, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), to urge passage of expanded background checks.

Her show “Inside Amy Schemer” featured an episode in April that satirized the gun lobby.

The House sit-in ran nearly all day on Wednesday and ran into Thursday, as Democrats sought to force a debate on two gun control bills following the June 12 shootings in Orlando. Nearly fifty people were killed in the worst mass shootings in U.S. history.

As the sit-in proceeded, Ryan ordered the House cameras shut off because the chamber was not in session. But Democratic lawmakers turned on their phones and laptops to offer live-streaming coverage on Facebook Live and Twitter’s Periscope. C-SPAN, which usually carries the House live feed, at times switched to the social media coverage.

A Twitter spokesman said that in the past 24 hours, there have been 1.4 million tweets with the hashtags #NoBillNoBreak and #HoldTheFloor, tied to the sit in.

More Biz

  • Roc Nation Label Names Shari Bryant

    Roc Nation Label Names Shari Bryant and Omar Grant Co-Presidents

    Roc Nation has named Shari Bryant and Omar Grant co-presidents of the Roc Nation Label, the company announced today. The two will lead the Roc Nation team to develop strategies for signed artists while continuing to build the talent roster, according to the announcement. “There is no better way to celebrate my 20th anniversary in the [...]

  • Bert Salke and Jennifer Salke

    Feds Looked Into Amazon Studios Chief Jennifer Salke in College Admissions Scandal

    Federal investigators looked into Amazon Studios chief Jennifer Salke and her husband, Fox 21 Television Studios president Bert Salke, as they conducted a sprawling probe of cheating in elite college admissions, a source close to the case told Variety. It does not appear, however, that prosecutors will charge the Salkes in the case. The Salkes [...]

  • Variety Cord Cutting Placeholder Cable

    Big Blackout Looms as CBS, AT&T Go Down to Wire on Renewal Talks

    A blackout affecting CBS stations in major markets throughout the country looms as CBS and AT&T executives go down to the wire on negotiations for a retransmission consent deal covering 28 O&O stations. The sides have sparred publicly during the past few days as 11 p.m. PT Friday expiration of the previous contract approached. AT&T [...]

  • Contract Placeholder Business WGA ATA Agent

    ICM Responds to WGA Packaging Lawsuit: Claims are 'Baseless' and 'Absurd'

    ICM Partners has asked a judge to dismiss the lawsuit filed against four major talent agencies by the Writers Guild of America as part of the larger war between agencies and the guild over packaging fees on TV series and movies. The guild sued ICM, CAA, WME and UTA in California state court in April, [...]

  • New York City NYC Placeholder

    CityFM Podcast Takes a Deep Look at New York’s Music Scene (Listen)

    First among the many projects listed at the beginning of New York Music Month in June was a WNYE radio show and podcast called CityFM that promised to “explore the city’s music culture, emerging artists and trends, and upcoming events told through the lens of what’s happening around the city in Summer 2019.” And while [...]

  • Live Nation Logo. (PRNewsFoto/Live Nation)

    Live Nation Confirms Placing Tickets Directly on Secondary Market at Artists’ Request

    Representatives for Live Nation, the world’s largest live-entertainment company and owner of Ticketmaster, confirmed that it bypassed conventional channels and directly placed thousands of concert tickets on the secondary market upon artists’ request, in an article published in Billboard. In a statement shared with Variety, the company acknowledged that it has facilitated the transfer of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content