Comedian Cort McCown has appeared in several films and TV shows, including 80’s Blockbusters’ “Can’t Buy Me Love” and “Teenwolf” as well as “Lucky”, “Hunter”, “JAG”, and” Beverly Hills 90210”. 10 years ago Cort began performing Stand-up Comedy at clubs across the nation, opening for such acts as Harland Williams, Bobby Lee, and Andrew Dice Clay. Cort is a paid regular at The World Famous Comedy Store and also performs at The Improv and The Laugh Factory on The Sunset Strip. Cort created “The Playboy Comedy Tour” at The Palms Casino in Las Vegas where it ran for 9 years. The show was twice voted “Best Comedy Club” in Las Vegas. He has twice appeared on the cover of Las Vegas Magazine. Cort was recently heard daily on SIRIUS SATELLITE RADIO where he was the Co-Host of “THE PLAYBOY MORNING SHOW” for PLAYBOY RADIO. He was also featured on “The Girls Next Door” when Hef came to Vegas to see “Playboy Comedy”. Most recently Cort was a guest on FX’s hit Show “The League”. Cort was also the host of The Karma Foundation’s Kandy Kruise’s all 3 years they sailed, and he’s our guest today in 7 questions.
RM: How did you end going from Tulsa to “Teen Wolf”? What were the types of challenges you were faced with being young and having an interest in acting and comedy right smack in the middle of the Bible belt?
CMC: I was on vacation in LA during the summer Olympics, got really lucky and had a friend working on a CBS Show starring John Stamos. I got a job working as his Stand-in/Photo Double. Made the move to LA that week and started work right away. After the show ended the AD was doing “Teenwolf” and gave me a call. It was ALL luck. It was a different time, not everyone wanted to be an actor back then. Now the business is WAY more Corporate, less and less opportunities today.
RM: What is it about standup that really drew you to the medium and has kept you doing it until this day? Is it more of a means of instant gratification for you than acting?
CMC: I just really love it. There is nothing else more satisfying than standup. It’s different every time you go on stage, and it is your own material so nobody is telling you what or how to say something. It is real freedom you don’t get in any other medium.
RM: When testing out new bits, do you constantly find yourself changing your delivery even right up until you walk on stage? Have you ever found yourself fumbling over a bit because you are thinking about a new piece of material that you’re about to do later in your act?
CMC: It’s always different. Sometimes a new bit just comes out right the first time, and sometimes it takes forever to get it where I want it. I don’t know if “Fumbling” is the right way to describe it, “eating shit” might be a better term.
RM: What’s the most valuable thing that you learned from working with the Diceman? Is he as intimidating as he appears in his act and on television?
CMC: Dice is one of the nicest most generous people I have ever met. He took me and a lot of other guys out when we were new and let us perform in front of massive crowds. It was terrifying, but really fun and made you stronger. He is one of the most Honest and Raw Comedians I have ever had the pleasure of seeing on stage. He really is one of a kind. What I learned is no matter how strong you think you have become, you have to keep working on getting deeper and truer to who you are.
RM: Do you consider The Comedy Store to be your home club? Is part of the reason why that’s such a popular atmosphere because of all of the famous comedians who can pop in there at any given moment? How important has Mitzi Shore been for comedy as an art form all over the country, as well as for you personally?
CMC: The Comedy Store is my home club for sure. It’s not about who is there that makes it special; it’s the History of what the club stands for. Mitzi Shore passed me in 2002 and that was like getting an Oscar in this business. She started that club as a safe haven for comics to work out so they could hone their craft. And to this day it still has that vibe. Yes famous comic’s come there to work out, but the same could be said for The Comedy Cellar or a million other clubs. The Comedy Store just has a different vibe, hard to describe.
RM: What is the best part about doing television work? The worst? If you could only do television or movies for the remainder of your career, which one would you choose?
CMC: The best part is THE MONEY. Other than that I would rather do Standup. Unfortunately, people don’t buy tickets to most Comedy Clubs to see someone that’s funny. They want to see someone with television credits. If I had to do TV and only TV, I would love to do something like Breaking Bad, Mad Men, or Arrested Development. Netflix is really coming out with some amazing programming these days. So who knows?
RM: Which other comedians out in LA have you really developed great friendships with and feel have been the most beneficial to your career?
CMC: So many great comics. Bill Burr is someone I will watch every time he goes on stage, the guy is a genius. Sebastian Maniscalco is another one that can’t miss. I have so many friends that are comics that we all seem to help each other out. Steve Rannazzissi, Bobby Lee, and Harland Williams have been very helpful taking me out with them and building relationships on the road.
RM: What’s up next for you in the year 2014? Any big plans in the works that we should know about?
CMC: Fellow comedian Joe Bartnick and I are launching our new podcast “Insensitivity Training” this week on All Things Comedy Network. I will be hitting the road in January with dates in La Jolla, Chicago, Houston, and in March I will be at Crackers in Indianapolis. Hopefully 2014 will be fun. Or else……………
Official Website: http://www.cortmccown.com/
Cort on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cort-McCown/159775750710735
Cort on Twitter: https://twitter.com/cortmccown
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