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‘SNL’ And Louis C.K.’s Plagiarism Scandal Deepens After Tig Notaro Deems It “Extremely Disappointing”

A pre-taped sketch from last weekend’s episode of Saturday Night Live continues to be mired in controversy due to its similarities to a pre-existing short film.

In SNL’s “Birthday Clown,” Louis C.K. portrays a man who hires a children’s clown to come and perform for him, and him alone, on his birthday. After the sketch aired, many criticized the pre-taped sketch for its striking similarities to Tig Notaro’s 2015 short film “Clown Service,” which, per IMDB, is about a heartbroken woman who “enlists the services of a traveling party clown.” The clown, much like in the SNL sketch, performs for Tig, and Tig alone.

Notaro released a statement to Entertainment Weekly regarding the potential plagiarism saying she found the sketch “extremely disappointing,” while adding that a writer/director who worked on Louis C.K.’s clown sketch was “fully aware of ‘Clown Service.”

“First off, I have recently learned that a writer/director who was fully aware of ‘Clown Service’ when I was making it, actually worked on Louis C.K.’s clown sketch that is in question,” Notaro said in her statement. “Secondly, Louis C.K. and I have not communicated in any way for nearly a year and a half.”

While the two comedians haven’t communicated in a year and a half, EW points out that C.K. previously posted Notaro’s 2012 standup set, Live, on his website and is listed as an executive producer for her Amazon Prime series One Mississippi. Notaro uploaded “Clown Service” to Vimeo three days ago and it’s already received over 56,000 views.

“I hesitated to even address any of this, but I think it is only right to defend my work and ideas and moving forward, I plan to continue screening ‘Clown Service’ with the joy and pride I always have.“

Decider reached out to NBC for comment, and a spokesperson politely told us “No comment.” Developing!


Personally I've never found this guy entertaining at all. But posted since he seems to have fans here.

by Anonymousreply 10308/23/2017

Countdown to the thread being deleted... 15... 14...

by Anonymousreply 104/13/2017

Perhaps I'm misremembering, but wasn't it Louis CK that had an episode where he confronted Dane Cook about plagiarizing other comedians' material?

by Anonymousreply 204/13/2017

How can he be an executive producer for her show and they dont communicate?

by Anonymousreply 304/13/2017

Did Louis write or direct the sketch, R2?

by Anonymousreply 404/13/2017

Another comedian came forward on AV Club about a short film he made in 2009 (film below) - with the same exact premise. So... either everyone is having this same thought about clowns and writing it out and making a short film about it - or there's been some plagiarism going around.

by Anonymousreply 504/13/2017

Lorne Michaels, you in danger gurl!

by Anonymousreply 604/13/2017

Thanks op, it's important to let the world know what's happening with this!

Good job!

If ANYTHING changes or if Tig releases a new statement please,please,please let everyone know.

by Anonymousreply 704/13/2017

That's what I was wondering, R4.

As Louis has been championing Notaro for some time, it stands to reason he would be aware of the film and its concept.

If not, and Notaro is correct that the writer/director was in fact aware of her short beforehand - how she would know this, I'm not sure, I'm assuming someone from SNL leaked that info to her - then does that mean the W/D tried to pass off the concept to an oblivious CK as being original?

Either Louis must be pissed for being duped, or ashamed for being caught red-handed.

by Anonymousreply 804/13/2017

Tig hasn't talked to Louis is a year and a half and is also fighting with Amy Schumer now, too.

by Anonymousreply 904/13/2017

Comedians really are a sick bunch of fuckers, aren't we?

by Anonymousreply 1004/13/2017

I heard a podcast of a radio show where Louis C.K. talked about Denis Leary's habit of plagarizing. CK says when he was nineteen he did his bit about how people are assholes, and embrace it, and do things like park in handicapped spaces because "I'm an asshole." He said Leary, who has always been nice to him, went up later and didn't DO the bit, but talked about the bit, kind of stole the theme and expanded on it. And later, basically heisted the whole thing and did it as his own material, including the "Cause I'm an asshole." song. But also gave CK money for a film he was raising money for.

So CK kind of sticks it to Leary (and i understand Leary does pilfer the stuff of other comics, including Bill Hicks' entire act) while also shrugging it off like, "I thought the material was played out for me anyway, and I was moving on from it." (at nineteen). See that? An older comic is so impoverished creatively he steals one of CK's throwaway bits - one of CK's throwaway bits at NINETEEN, and it's ok with CK because he's just that creative, he doesn't need it.

I found the podcast after reading how some comics accuse Amy Shumer of stealing their stuff, and you can see why they'd think so. There's the sketch about hiring people to move your limbs in the gym while you sleep, which she turned into a "sleep gym" bit, and a couple of other things.

The comics always say it's "Parallel thinking" to let themselves off the hook. "Oh we had the same idea at the same time."

by Anonymousreply 1104/13/2017

I can see having a case against a comic for plagiarizing a joke, but a whole movie? Wouldn't they have to be very similar in every way? After all, there are basically only a handful of stories in the world.

by Anonymousreply 1204/13/2017

What is a Tig?

by Anonymousreply 1304/13/2017

Didn't Tig Notaro's pal Nick Kroll plagiarize other comedians?

by Anonymousreply 1404/13/2017

FTM problems...

by Anonymousreply 1504/13/2017

I remember looking forward to the comedian every Sunday on Ed Sullivan. He always had one on. I remember when Jerry van Dyke bombed on Sullivan. Everyone in America thought he'd never work again. But obviously, he did.

I miss the old variety show format, but it got beaten into the ground by untalented hacks. Sonny and Cher, Tony Orlando, Glenn Campbell. Ugh

by Anonymousreply 1604/13/2017

[quote]Did Louis write or direct the sketch, [R2]?

Not R2. Nick Kocher and Brian McElhaney, and Will Stephen were the ones credited with writing the SNL sketch. Jay Mohr plagiarized another stand up comedian's rotuine for a sketch back in the 90s. He got fired from SNL sometime after that. Maybe these guys will get canned.

by Anonymousreply 1704/13/2017

I tried watching Lous CK's most recent special, "2017", and I could only get about 10-15 min into it, and had to shut it off. It was nothing more than him yelling and bitching non-stop, and childish punchlines that were only going after shock value (like "Dead Baby" jokes). Really? We told those kind of jokes on the playground in grade school... Plus I was getting a splitting headache listening to him yell about everything.

I enjoyed his comedy a few years ago, but since he's become the "golden boy" comedian for privileged middle aged straight white guys, I've been more or less burned out by him being all over the media.

Not to mention, there have been rumors floating around that he basically made unwanted sexual advances towards two other female comedians, and exposed himself to them in the process. They haven't come forward, apparently due to his current popularity - they were afraid it would cause them to get blacklisted among the comedy circuit, and they would also get backlash from die hard Louie fans. It's believed that it was the comedy duo, Garfunkel & Oates.

by Anonymousreply 1804/13/2017

R18 = Hard & Phirm

by Anonymousreply 1904/13/2017

R16, Glen Campbell is many things but "untalented" is not one of them.

by Anonymousreply 2004/13/2017

I can't remember which gossip site said that Louis CK had a history of sexually harassing comedians who weren't very well known. I think it was Iliza Shlesinger and another Z list comedian that talked about redheaded male comedian who was harassing women.

by Anonymousreply 2104/13/2017

Her life is so exciting she's watching SNL on Sat. night?

by Anonymousreply 2204/13/2017

R22 well she was probably watching the show while taking care of those ugly twin boys that she has.

by Anonymousreply 2304/13/2017

r22 dlers and gays should talk, and adults are out on Saturday night all the time; mhhh.

by Anonymousreply 2404/13/2017

How long till this gets deleted.

by Anonymousreply 2504/13/2017

It will probably be deleted by Saturday. Those three writers were probably shut out of the writing sessions this week.

by Anonymousreply 2604/13/2017

I love both these comedians.

I sincerely hope one of Louis' handlers did the plagiarism and Louis was unaware.

by Anonymousreply 2704/13/2017

So shouldn't the two guys who made the film in 2009 actually be pissed at 'Tig" (groan) for stealing their material?

by Anonymousreply 2804/13/2017

R28 It's weird. The idea of hiring a clown to entertain one person is a sort of obvious premise. However, I think the Totaro film and the SNL sketch have more in common than either of them do with the 2009 short film. The music and visuals in the Totaro film and the SNL sketch are similar.

Tig claims to know that the writer/producer had seen her film. And I could by that Tig never saw that obscure 2009 short. I guess. You're right, though, it does make an excellent line of defense for the SNL guys.

by Anonymousreply 2904/13/2017

It's not even a funny premise, was it really steal worthy. Put me in the category of people who don't think CK is funny.

by Anonymousreply 3004/13/2017

The premise is the same, but the executions are completely different, so I don't particularly see this as a case of plagiarism.

by Anonymousreply 3104/14/2017

I actually thought it was a pretty good sketch, until the end, which ruined it.

by Anonymousreply 3204/14/2017

[quote]The idea of hiring a clown to entertain one person is a sort of obvious premise.

When I was a kid I picked up some of those old "1001 Jokes For All Occasions" books which were full of Borscht Belt crap, and I clearly remember one joke about a guy with no friends turning 40 and the only one who showed up to his party was the clown.

But as you said, the staging and production of CK's and Notaro's are very similar.

by Anonymousreply 3304/14/2017

Tig should have kept her mouth shut. If she had to comment, it should have been a witty one liner, the end. Gawd. Comics take themselves so seriously. Ironically.

by Anonymousreply 3404/14/2017

Was it set in a concentration camp?

by Anonymousreply 3504/14/2017

Guys, don't worry about this getting deleted. Tig only does that when there is too much negativity, and no room for rational discussion. As long as you keep using this kind of tone, the thread will stay. As many here know her book title is I'M JUST A PERSON. Lol. She is just a person and she has limits. Keep it positive and rock on.

by Anonymousreply 3604/14/2017

So, when is a skit a spoof of something and when is it a direct copy that justifies the label plagiarism? I guess changing the gender of the protagonist doesn't matter enough to make it look different?

by Anonymousreply 3704/14/2017

It was clearly plagiarism. Tig's statement said all there is to say about that. I salute her for the way she has protected her brand over the years. No one messes with Tiglebee and that is awesome.

by Anonymousreply 3804/14/2017

Oh good, the crazy Tig fans who pretend they know her in real life have arrived.

by Anonymousreply 3904/14/2017


by Anonymousreply 4004/14/2017

CK's new special 2017 is pretty great, and if you're gay and didn't watch until the end, you missed out as he does about 20 minutes of material on how Channing Tatum and McConnagay in Magic Mike make him feel gay and he expands on that. It's pretty risky and funny.

by Anonymousreply 4104/14/2017

Tig is an annoying unfunny cunt who faked an illness to become famous.

by Anonymousreply 4204/14/2017

I started a thread about this 2 days ago, linking the HuffPo article about it. I called Tig a bitter, humor-free dyke. The post disappeared almost immediately. Just sayin'...

by Anonymousreply 4304/14/2017

Tig's an asshole but this homophobic use of "dyke" as an insult shit has got to stop, R43.

by Anonymousreply 4404/14/2017

The idea itself has been around forever.

In 1995, I worked on a short film that screened at Sundance called Egg Salad about a party clown performing for a lonely woman up in the Hollywood Hills. It was directed by Billy Kent, a pretty big commercial director at the time, and starred Helen Shaver.

by Anonymousreply 4504/14/2017

I'm not at all convinced she's a lesbian, she seems more FTM to me.

by Anonymousreply 4604/14/2017

R46 is trying to spread the rumor that she cut off her breasts as part of her transitioning? So what if she did? Are you a transphobe R46. If so, that's not cool.

by Anonymousreply 4704/14/2017

R43 It is no secret that Tig protects her brand. Nothing wrong with that. Try again, hater. LOL

by Anonymousreply 4804/14/2017

[quote]In 1995, I worked on a short film that screened at Sundance called Egg Salad about a party clown performing for a lonely woman up in the Hollywood Hills. It was directed by Billy Kent, a pretty big commercial director at the time, and starred Helen Shaver.

So the 2009 filmmakers ripped out the 1995 film?

by Anonymousreply 4904/14/2017

Wow. Thought up until now, Tig was a guy.

by Anonymousreply 5004/14/2017

The Tig Notaro/Nick Kroll threads have been some of the most bizarre ever to appear on DL. That ex-stalker/spurned lover/Tig hater inevitably always pipes in.

by Anonymousreply 5104/14/2017

I don't understand the people who are criticizing the way Tig presents herself. She's being her "authentic"self so what is the problem?

A woman should be able to dress as masculine as she wants without having her womanhood questioned.

Save the criticism for people who would encourage her to have surgery and shoot herself up with male hormones.

by Anonymousreply 5204/14/2017

This story is so juicy to me.

by Anonymousreply 5304/14/2017

Calling her a dyke is homophobic? She's a dyke!

by Anonymousreply 5404/14/2017

Tig is another toxic lesbian comedian like Rosie and Ellen. Are there any sane lesbian comedians in the business?

by Anonymousreply 5504/14/2017

Are there any sane comedians period, R55?

by Anonymousreply 5604/14/2017

WTF is Tig's brand?! Most people on Planet Earth have no idea who she is much less what her brand is and how hard she protects it. Please.

by Anonymousreply 5704/14/2017

He was using it as an insult r54, which was pretty damn obvious.

by Anonymousreply 5804/14/2017

Is r41 for real? "He talks about feeling gay! So risky!"

by Anonymousreply 5904/14/2017

I find it interesting that I know of Tig more from the "controversies" and cancer than from any of her creative output.

by Anonymousreply 6004/14/2017

Her skit about Taylor Dane is fucking hilarious

by Anonymousreply 6104/15/2017

Tig had cancer and had to have her breasts removed nitwits.

by Anonymousreply 6204/15/2017

If you say so R62. She claims a lot of ailments.

by Anonymousreply 6304/17/2017

it's weird she would accuse Louis CK, the man who "made" her by endorsing her stand up about her tragedies. Yes, maybe he stole an old sketch (not exactly a groundbreaking one) form her, but she could've talked to him face to face instead of all this. Didn't he produce her tv series too?

by Anonymousreply 6404/17/2017

For a comedian, she sure is unfunny

by Anonymousreply 6504/19/2017

Tig is just pissed that Lous CK's cock is bigger than hers.

by Anonymousreply 6604/19/2017

Tig is so drama-prone!

by Anonymousreply 6704/19/2017

R60 I agree, she's not that fucking funny. Too dry; like most vag for me.

by Anonymousreply 6804/19/2017

Who is this fella?

by Anonymousreply 6904/19/2017

Tig is like the Sun in a solar system of drama. It always orbits around her. I've only ever heard of her on here.

by Anonymousreply 7004/19/2017

Wait. Is Tig the crazy dame in Las Vegas who stalks Clooney?

by Anonymousreply 7104/19/2017

Tig and D*vida would be the ultimate DL mash-up, R71. TigRochelle.

by Anonymousreply 7204/19/2017

I used to like Tig, but then I saw a couple of her documentaries. She kind of comes across like an asshole. In one scene she's eye rolling about going on a date with this chic who then called her to say she had a really good time.

And in the same doc, she talks about her now partner, but in the doc they aren't together yet. Her partner isn't a lesbian (surprise surprise) but is really attracted to Tig and OF COURSE Tig is head over heels for this chick.

Honestly, the non-lesbian partner comes across as an opportunist, but by the end of the doc she and Tig decide to give their relationship a go.

by Anonymousreply 7304/19/2017

She's a lesbian in show business and people are really side eyeing the drama? (Tig)

by Anonymousreply 7404/19/2017

Why doesn't anyone care enough? I faked cancer. I then exposed my scars to unsuspecting audiences. Now, I try to publicly embarrass Amy Schumer, Norm Mcdonald, and Louis CK(the guy who gave me any fame at all,) and still... I can't get any real attention. What can I do next????!!!!

by Anonymousreply 7504/27/2017

So unfunny.

by Anonymousreply 7604/27/2017

Louis CK was facing a possible PR disaster a few months before he became Notaro's biggest champion. Helping a cancer ridden lesbian (even when I believe he knew she didn't have cancer because they both kept contradicting eath other's stories. The guilty helping the guilty) Now she bites the hand that gave her everything? Why would she do that? I think it's because she is so crazy and arrogant that she can't stand the ide a that so many credit him with any career she has.

by Anonymousreply 7704/27/2017

Did she really fake having cancer?

by Anonymousreply 7804/27/2017

R73 In any of these shows you watched, did you see any scenes where she talks to a doctor about having cancer? I'm sure you're gone by now but would appreciate any insight cause I can't bear watching that fraud drone on and on.

R78 The story changed and changed. Her story didn't even line up with Louis CK's story. Why wouldn't a simple story stay consistent? Notaro also has a reputation for pathological and malicious lying. Accused a band member of being a drug addict and admitted she had no idea if that was remotely true. Used tax payer money to fund a nearly decade long vendetta against a stranger- Accused someone of stalking and all sorts of other slanderous things. Used lawyer Marty Singer (Google Marty Singer Vanity Fair for some idea of what he can do for a client) and her friendship with the son of a Jules Kroll to seal that deal. I now think she did get surgery at some point but because she is F2M and not due to breast cancer.

by Anonymousreply 7904/27/2017

The Tig Notaro troll scares the shit out of me, but... there ARE some weird things about her cancer.

by Anonymousreply 8004/27/2017

Tig is a lying cunt. But, I don't think she was the one who floated the blind item about CK perving on female comics.

by Anonymousreply 8104/27/2017

R80 what do you find weird about her cancer?

R81 I don't think she did that either. I think she turned on him recently because she can't take the fact that he keeps getting credited with her career.

by Anonymousreply 8204/28/2017

Tig and CK both suck.

So there's that.

by Anonymousreply 8304/28/2017

I thought the red-headed comic exposing himself to females was Carrot Top?

by Anonymousreply 8404/28/2017

Is Tig still pals with Dan Harmon and Sarah Silverman? They also helped her out years ago when they gave her a minor role Silverman's Comedy Central show. Or, did and Sarah take part in the cancer scam?

by Anonymousreply 8504/28/2017

R85 Don't know of Sarah's involvement with the scam. Sarah also gave her a major role in an NBC comedy. At the last minute, that fell apart. The big money and help is coming from Nick Kroll. One of his father's businesses is reputation mgmt and PR . I think that played a part in the Louis CK/ Notaro stunt.

by Anonymousreply 8604/28/2017

R85 also don't know about Dan Harmon. The Netflix documentary called what else but ... "Tig," was produced by "Catapult." Catapult is owned by Jules and Lynn Kroll. I kid you not.

by Anonymousreply 8704/28/2017

Notaro's lawyer from Marty Singer's firm(Lavely and Singer lawery Allison Hart or Allison Hart Sievers ) is one of the funders of Clown Service. Of course, Nick Kroll shows up too.

( I know this is not interesting to most, but might be to some)

by Anonymousreply 8804/28/2017

Well, I'm extremely disappointed that Tig doesn't understand the benefits of a bit of blush and some lip rouge now and then.

by Anonymousreply 8904/28/2017

I'd never heard of Tig Notaro other than here.

She seems grim and unfunny. I did catch her on some interview show, and she came across like someone who had just lost a big court case- full of careworn bitterness and a certain world weariness. Imagine my shock when I discovered her profession was as... a comedian!

by Anonymousreply 9004/28/2017

At least I got a Make-A-Wish trip when I faked cancer as a teenager.

by Anonymousreply 9104/28/2017

r74 Tigs current girlfriend and the woman she falls for in the documentary, was not a lesbian before hooking up with Tig.

r79 I can't remember her talking to her cancer doctors in the documentary. However, she's trying to conceive a baby via surrogacy in the documentary, so you do see her talking to fertilization doctors. In fact, her having just beat cancer becomes an issue with harvesting Tig's eggs.

I think the doc might still be on Netflix, it's called Tig.

by Anonymousreply 9204/28/2017

^^^^^^ that was posted by r73 ^^^^^^

by Anonymousreply 9304/28/2017

R92. Thank you for info. That whole having a baby thing was her and a Nick Kroll idea for more self promotion. They learned along the way that having a well publicized baby is what celebrities do. That sounds wrong but you know what I mean. She told five different stories so far on hormone treatments. It's all so insanely cynical that it's hard for most to believe.

Since I now believe Notaro is in the process of becoming FTM, I'm guessing that Stephanie Allyne doesn't have to be a lesbian, to find happiness with this strange meal ticket of a creature she found.

by Anonymousreply 9404/29/2017

If anyone here knows Tig, they need to tell her to tread lightly.

Louis distanced himself from her when he found out that her cancer diagnosis was a fabrication. He decided to quietly back away, and keep it to himself. He felt quite betrayed.

If Tig keeps this shit up, shes going to regret it. That career Loyis landed her will end.

Do her a favor and tell her.

by Anonymousreply 9508/23/2017

That's what hapoens when you shut off autocorrect. I meant "Louis"

by Anonymousreply 9608/23/2017

Louis CK's topics followed Dylan Moran's for a number of years. I still like his bit on cell phones, but I won't listen to him anymore. Especially after the revelations of his sexual bullying of women in the workplace, any regular schmo coolness has worn off and he's back to being a sleaze - albeit a much richer one.

by Anonymousreply 9708/23/2017

You can't copywright a plot.

by Anonymousreply 9808/23/2017

[quote] Glen Campbell is many things but "untalented" is not one of them.

That's your opinion

by Anonymousreply 9908/23/2017

For the love of God, would someone please buy Mr. Notaro some blush and lip gloss! I BEG OF YOU!

by Anonymousreply 10008/23/2017

Not surprised she would cry out plagiarism. Her ideas are few and far between. She made a documentary, a stand-up special, a comedy album, a memoir, and now a TV series all based on the same week in her life.

by Anonymousreply 10108/23/2017

I love comedy. Truly. I have never found this man funny. Also I wpuld hate to be locked in a room while he jerks off.

by Anonymousreply 10208/23/2017

The Kroll Show was very funny.

by Anonymousreply 10308/23/2017
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