Press release from Turner, June 25, 2015:
TBS is about to bring some stormy competition to late night with the brand new series Funny Or Die Presents America’s Next Weatherman, produced by Funny Or Die, Mark Burnett and United Artists Media Group (UAMG). Funny Or Die Presents America’s Next Weatherman features 12 competitors vying for a job as America’s next great weathercaster. Matt Oberg (The Comedians) hosts the competition, which will be judged by longtime weather personalities Johnny Mountain (KABC, KCBS) and Jillian Barberie (Good Day LA). The series is set to premiere Saturday, Aug. 8, at 11 p.m. (ET/PT) on TBS, with availability across TBS’s on-demand, digital and mobile platforms the following day.
Funny Or Die Presents America’s Next Weatherman marries the comedic and subversive voice of Funny Or Die with the production value and compelling storytelling of a show from Mark Burnett. Each classic reality show element – from the physical challenges to the dramatic vote-offs – will be tweaked through the Funny Or Die prism to create an original viewing experience. However, the stakes are 100% real as the contestants will be vying for $100,000 and an appearance on TBS’s sister network CNN forecasting the national weather for the morning show New Day.
“Funny Or Die Presents America’s Next Weatherman takes everything we know – or think we know – about weathercasters and then uses it to put 12 competitors through the wringer for a chance at the big time,” said David Eilenberg, senior vice president of unscripted development, late night and specials for TBS and TNT. “The results are really something. This series is a fresh and extremely funny addition to TBS’s late-night lineup. We’re especially excited that it extends our relationships with both Funny Or Die and Mark Burnett.”
TBS has ordered eight one-hour episodes of Funny Or Die Presents America’s Next Weatherman, which is based on a concept and format by the creative teams at Funny Or Die and UAMG, including Seth Morris (Kroll Show), who will serve as a producer on the show. Funny Or Die’s Mike Farah and Joe Farrell serve as executive producers, along with Mark Burnett and Dean Houser.
“It’s been such a good time working with Funny Or Die,” said Burnett. “This will be the first time I’ve poked a little fun – actually a lot of fun – at what I am best known for. It’s a real wink to our audience as we look for the next great meteorologist. The funniest part is that it turns out that these are actually terrific weathercasters.”
“Reading between the lines of what Mark just said, it’s clear that this is the most important show he’s ever made,” said Farah. “We can’t wait to make Saturday nights at 11 p.m. in August appointment viewing for fans of comedy and competition alike.”
UAMG has retained all international rights, which will be distributed by MGM.
The following 12 hopefuls are set to compete on Funny Or Die Presents America’s Next Weatherman (left to right):
- Jennifer “Jazzy T” Williams (32), of Buffalo, N.Y., a radio personality with 10 years of on-air experience and a degree in telecommunications and digital media arts.
- Frank Margini (32) of Old Tappan, N.J., a fitness trainer and former member of Air Force with a degree in criminal justice and only 5% body fat.
- Jeff Forgeron (25) of San Diego, Calif., an Associated Press writer for Weather Underground who has a degree in meteorology.
- Miller Robson (42) of Columbus, Ga., a former wrestler and local meteorologist/anchor who is working toward a degree in meteorology.
- Jenn Barlow (28) of San Diego, Calif., a “sneaky smart blonde” with seven years experience as a television reporter and host.
- Mackenzie Bart (23), of Columbus, Ohio, Miss Ohio 2014 who is currently working on her degree in atmospheric science.
- Ron Hilliard (28), of Detroit, Mich., a news intern and SKYWARN-trained weather spotter with a degree in the interdisciplinary humanities of communications, theater and Spanish.
- Michelle Rotella (27) of Germantown, Md., a meteorologist who graduated from high school at 16 before earning a bachelor’s degree in meteorology.
- Aubrey Evans (25), of Las Vegas, Nev., a model and skilled ice skater with an abundance of life experience to bring to the competition.
- Christina Faraone (26) of Walden, N.Y., a Marine meteorologist technician whose master’s thesis was on the role of weather in aviation.
- David Collins (34) from Deland, Fla., a Navy veteran who graduated at the top of his meteorology class and spent four years as an operational weather briefer.
- Drew Logan (26) of Westlake Village, Calif., a pastor and former college football player who recently completed his master’s degree.
The Host and Judges
Matt Oberg serves as host of Funny Or Die Presents America’s Next Weatherman. An actor, writer and improviser, Oberg currently stars as Mitch in the FX series The Comedians. He is best known for his work on the TV shows The Mindy Project and 30 Rock. Oberg’s additional television credits include the ABC pilots Pulling and The Smart One, with Portia de Rossi, Malin Ackerman, Jean Smart and David Arquette, produced by Ellen Degeneres. Oberg can be seen in the upcoming Universal Pictures feature film Sisters, starring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. He got his start as a member of Big Black Car, an improv team at New York’s legendary PIT Theater.
Johnny Mountain is one of the most recognized faces in local TV news. He is a retired weathercaster for both KABC and KCBS in Los Angeles with close to 30 years of broadcasting experience.
Jillian Barberie started her career in her native Canada and quickly landed a prime gig at KTTV-FOX television on Good Day LA, where she spent 20 years as part of the highest-rated daytime shows in Los Angeles. In the year 2000, she joined FOX NFL Sunday to present the weather to millions of football fans.