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James Hibberd

‘Chris’ Creators: Choose Grins Over Gridirons … And Thank Jews for Hollywood

July 17, 2006 7:49 PM

Comedy is better for you than football, according to the creators of “Everybody Hates Chris.” The CW’s Sunday lineup featuring four comedies will be good counter-programming to Sunday night football, CW Entertainment President Dawn Ostroff said early Monday.

So critics attending The CW’s Sunday comedy creators panel later Monday wanted to know if the panelists are football fans. “It promotes gratuitous violence in our society,” Ali LeRoi (“Everybody Hates Chris”) said of the sport, noting that families watching his show “will lead to a better nation.” Comedians are better role models than football players, he said. “I’ve never heard of any comedians getting in violent altercations with the cops,” LeRoi said. “Oh yes we have,” Chris Rock (“Everybody hates Chris”) said.

When one critic pressed the creators to explain why there were not more African American-themed dramas on broadcast television, Rock asked the critic, who is African American, how old he is.

The critic answered 40.

“Do you ever think your life’s going to be as good as white people’s,” Rock asked. “Have fun on the way. You’re going to die in like, 28 years.” The critic asked the creators for a serious answer to the question. An exasperated LeRoi responded.“The only reason Hollywood exists is because Jewish people couldn’t get on Broadway,” he said, noting that Jewish showmen helped create a new entertainment model to get stories told at the beginning of the 20th Century.  “Nobody has the right to be on a TV show,” LeRoi said. “Black drama, schmack drama. It’s about making the product.”



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