Josh Olson on

The King of Comedy

Released 1983
Distributor 20th Century Fox

Ok, it’s not really such a comedy, unless you consider the comedy of embarrassment, humiliation and pain. Scorsese and DeNiro followed Raging Bull with this unexpected gem, a bracingly offbeat portrait of a wannabe comic who’ll do just about anything to impress his idol a jaded talk show host played (brilliantly) by Jerry Lewis. Audiences didn’t get it in 1982 but it’s come to be recognized as one of the director’s finest, sort of a skewed reimagining of Taxi Driver.

About Josh Olson

Josh Olson was the only student in his second grade class to see The House That Dripped Blood. Many years later, he wrote and directed the no-budget horror film, Infested, a brutal assault on The Big Chill, with zombies. He went on to write the screenplay for A History Of Violence and was nominated for the WGA, BAFTA and Academy Awards for Best Screenplay. He kept losing to Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana, but that’s okay. He has written features and TV shows with Harlan Ellison, Walter Hill, Slash, Willie Nelson, and Mick Jagger. His Village Voice essay “I Will Not Read Your Fucking Script” became an internet phenomenon, getting upwards of five million hits. The ten-part audio drama Bronzeville which he wrote, starring Laurence Fishburne, Larenz Tate, Tracee Ellis Ross, Omari Harwicke and Tika Sumpter was a popular and critical hit, and is currently being developed for TV. He and John Brancato (The Game) recently wrote and sold the feature spec Trigger Warning, which is being produced by Thunder Road. Josh is the host of Trailers From Hell's official podcast, The Movies That Made Me, available everywhere podcasts are streamed and downloaded!