Comedy comes, you hockey puck | AspenTimes.com

Comedy comes, you hockey puck

Stewart Oksenhorn

Don Rickles will make his U.S. Comedy Arts Festival debut when the 2007 festival comes to Aspen in February. (Contributed photo)

Aspen, CO ColoradoASPEN Don Rickles will make his U.S. Comedy Arts Festival debut, and George Carlin his first festival appearance in a decade when the USCAF stages its 13th annual event Feb. 28 through March 4, with presentations at various Aspen venues.Rickles will be present for a special one-hour screening of “The Rickles Project,” a new documentary directed by John Landis (“Animal House,” “Beverly Hills Cop III”) and based on Rickles’ life. A Q&A session with Rickles and Landis will follow the screening. Rickles will also receive the first USCAF Pinnacle Award, honoring his 50-plus years as a comedian.

George Carlin, who last appeared at the USCAF in 1997, returns to celebrate his 50th year in comedy. Carlin’s performance is part of the headliner series at the Wheeler Opera House; the series will also include performances by Steven Wright and Katt Williams.Additional highlights of the 2007 USCAF include “Entourage”: Behind the Scenes; a special screening of “The Winner,” a series set to debut this spring on Fox; The Gaggle, a debate-style show centering around politics and pop culture; The Big Picture, presented by HBO Films president Colin Callender; and Blogging: Buzz vs. Biz. The new show Broadband Theater will examine genre-busting ideas on the Internet, and a New York-based storytelling group called the Moth will make a return appearance.”Entourage”: Behind the Scenes, a tribute to the hit HBO program, will feature cast members Kevin Connolly, Adrian Grenier, Kevin Dillon, Jerry Ferrara and Jeremy Piven; executive producer and creator Doug Ellin, and executive producer Stephen Levinson.

“The Winner” features Rob Corddry (“The Daily Show”) as a wealthy 40-something, looking back at his younger days. The series was created and written by Seth MacFarlane (“Family Guy”) and Ricky Blitt. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with Corddry and Blitt. The USCAF’s 2007 Film Program will feature Bill and Stella Pence as guest directors. The Pences co-founded the Telluride Film Festival, from which they recently departed. Among the films in the program are “The General,” Buster Keaton’s 1927 silent classic about a stolen train, and a retrospective of works by animator Chuck Jones. The film program will also feature a series of independent comedies, and a Fireside Chat series with film studio presidents Peter Rice, Bob Berney and Daniel Battsek.The 2007 USCAF will also include stand-up, sketch and alternative performances.

HBO, which presents the festival, has scratched previously announced plans to rename the event, the HBO Comedy Festival.Ticket packages, including the $125 Locals Package, are available at http://www.uscaf.com, or by calling (866) 350-3369.Stewart Oksenhorn’s e-mail address is stewart@aspentimes.com

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