Blue Collar Comedy Tour
March 28, 2003
Comedy concert films are frequently cash cows for their distributors. They're inexpensive to produce and generally offer some name recognition in the form of at least one well-known stand-up comedian. Recent successes in the genre have included Martin Lawrence: Runteldat, Original Kings of Comedy, and even Notorious C.H.O. (though that film's feat has been on a smaller scale). The most lucrative of these was Original Kings of Comedy, which combined the onstage performances of Steve Harvey, D.L. Hughley, Bernie Mac and Cedric the Entertainer with behind-the-scenes footage. That film earned $38 million at the box office, largely due to the combining of talents; there was truly something for everyone.
Blue-Collar Comedy Tour will follow a similar format, but will target a different audience: Middle America. The film will feature stand-up routines from Bill Engvall, Ron White, Larry the Cable Guy and Jeff "You Might Be a Redneck" Foxworthy. The four comedians have been touring together since 2000, earning $12 million and culminating in a best-selling album. The footage for this film comes from concerts recorded during the summer of 2002. On board as director is C.B. Harding, who directed a number of episodes for the first season of MTV's The Osbournes.
The four stars of the film have a solid following; the most noteworthy being Foxworthy, who has sold more than 13 million comedy albums and is the author of 11 best-sellers. Thanks to this combination of talent and name recognition, Blue-Collar Comedy Tour should be a solid financial success for Warner Bros. (Kim Hollis/BOP)