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Other [-ow Points in Comedv l{otes
n the world of comedy, few items are more dreaded than the "studio note...
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Tales from the Writer's Room by Adam Baer in Rolling Stone

Tales from the Writer's Room by Adam Baer in Rolling Stone.
A brief oral history of notes from the Hollywood's brass.

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Tales from the Writer's Room by Adam Baer in Rolling Stone

  1. 1. /y:::::*x,i:T:' Other [-ow Points in Comedv l{otes n the world of comedy, few items are more dreaded than the "studio note" - a sugges. tion or criticism, sometimes handwritten, often at the last minute, from an executive or a "standards and practices" representative. Usually the execs have a problem with language. Other times it's the plot. And sometimes. . . . Here, in their ownwords, some of Hollywood's funniest talents recall the craziest notes theyVe received. ByAdam Baer I]ILL LAWF,ENCE Creator, SPIN CITY, SCRUBS SATUIiDAY NIGHT LIVE Whenwe were makin$ the f.rst "MacGruber" sketch, it ended with us asking clererrly Piven io "band me that bucket fllled with bum jizz," And there was this litUe dance we had to do to fl$ure oui an appropriate waY to say it. ApparentlY, You can saY "bum sperm," butYou can't say "bum semen." "Bum spunk" was OK. But "bum jizz" was not OK. So we dld 40 different takes - "bum jizzum," "bum zygote." So often the things theY'll have you say as alternates are so much dirtier. TbeY" must have a manual t- somewnere. r"-"mqi'!!11ff*'-'- -"--Y Wayback in the Spin City days, one note we received was about the number of times You were allowed to say,,ass" in an episode. The memo from standards and practices said. "You say lhe word .ass'on pages 7, I3,P.4, Rg. please pick your 'ass.' " They didn't know they wrote the funniest thing in the world to me. I kept it in my office for years. PAUI, SCHEE}I, ACIOr-WrltCr, IIUMA N CIIANT In one }luman Giant scene, I was raped by a dinosaur, and the MTV people said, "You can't say you were raped by dinosaurs, but you can say you were diddjed." Doesn't that sound more creepy? -.1J+ *lTlItrJ,I Hr crrIzENS BB'I. A DF We wrote a scene t*'iua'uohn Dends Nutsack'" rhe J oke wa' t'h.t ;;;1" to*na :n"-o::C't"*t lvric s to Dernrer'B **e* """it"*'":::"^L? ffill?""tt ,ioiJl"*t*ck" aII the time' Comeoy-t't sald we aouldn t''a,u it' u* tn"" *:I::" negotiat- insvraraxh"*;?;;;tt v"l t-13 sav the word * nutsack"' *" *""?I*' *How about l1e' nut- sacks' ?'n*" "' " ii"u t "* :':":*:X1 T*T;i _. ^ ^. ur:rfrU.lVl #lffi::ff::iJy. ff i;"11 ::lf":":[y, *e, i,e . . ;:H:iff '"'l.j*:r":,t"*A:i#"*,iii:_y,il;- i3iffi:#,1?tii1.*:' ouu,, ,.,JJo*cn ! cqqt.ipuuu - ' execubive can sii r" rl^:it:" *-tC;-#eral shsqge'B' *Jl,:t:"":ffi:;"[];ffi ;ffi:1ff"i'iHt": i m asi ne '; #il: h;: ::#"_1Hil#fl ffi ;i* Ji,oBEri,r e wdlnn :1T:':: :y:" YouR ENrHusrAsM _o . = t i:::::'ffJ;l'ff#;;:::*r::i:*"*""o make it' souncl *f"" ttb"rit;;ere like' "You can ffi;;;; ;;;.red if v;u: 1f&nt I " ROLLING STONE. SEPTEMBER T8,2OOA 5T
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