Blame Canada: Most self-deprecating man in comedy comes to the Improv |

Blame Canada: Most self-deprecating man in comedy comes to the Improv

Jeremy Hotz can even make Howie Nave sad this week at the Improv in Harveys.

Look out, Tahoe. The master of misery has returned. Just when you thought you were in a complete snow funk, wanting to snap, along comes an individual who will not only make you feel better about your circumstance but will make you wonder if this guy ever smiles at anything.

International award-winning comedian Jeremy Hotz headlines nightly through Sunday at the Improv inside Harveys. There are two shows on Saturday night.

Hotz has a new DVD out that captures his misery and ironically makes you laugh about his plight. It was recorded at Montreal’s Just for Laughs Festival before a sold-out crowd at the Imperial Theatre. He’s been to Tahoe numerous times and even though remains miserable on stage has actually found a few things to smile about when seeing the beauty up here. His style is like no other completely original with sidesplitting takes on everyday life will not only leave you in stitches but gasping for air which seems in short supply especially if you’re new to this area.

I’ve known Jeremy more than 10 years and he still feels like he’s an incompetent comedian. I’m serious. I watched him a few years ago in Montreal and he completely destroyed the audience (that means he had a killer show standing ovation and all) and after he finished said, “Oh man I was (bad) out there.”

One time I asked him why he feels he doesn’t do well even when critics write great stuff about him and he said, “You need to fail at everything else first.”

Maybe it’s a Canadian thing? Jeremy is one of Canada’s best imports who has fun making jokes about our neighbor to the north.

“It’s not a very tough country,” he said. “They have an army. They just didn’t give them guns or anything. Look at the Canadian flag. It’s not a symbol of power. It’s a leaf. Don’t screw with Canada. They’ll dry up and blow away.”

For more than 25 years, Brant Von Hoffman has been the Renaissance man in the entertainment industry. OK, some might say he has had many irons in the fire hoping one of them ignites but I like to think that most of us in this business have A.D.D., and therefore keep getting distracted which we tell everybody is part of the creative process.

Brant is not only a fine comedian but also an actor, writer, author and producer.

A veteran of more than 15 films, Brant has co-stared in such comedy hits as “Guarding Tess” with Nicolas Cage and Shirley MacLaine, “Rustler’s Rhapsody” with Tom Berenger and Sela Ward, and “Police Academy” with Steve Guttenberg.

Brant teamed up for eight years with production partner Hugh Wilson (writer and director to such hits as “First Wives Club” and “Guarding Tess”) and helped bring the funny to such productions as “Blast from the Past” and “Dudley Doo-Right.”

He’s also an author co-penning a book that USA Today called, “A must-have manual for any man.” That book is called “The Von Hoffmann Brother’s Big Damn Book of Shear Manliness,” which offers riotously funny observations, short stories, tips, lists, and definitions. Contents include a look at “Spartacus” (the manliest film ever made), a guide to fishing lures, chili recipes, drinking songs, a tribute to the guy who painted the “poker dogs” with more than 300 photos included. The book went on to become a best selling coffee table book and later the Von Hoffman Brothers then went on to write, produce, and host “American Hombres” for the History Channel.

Of course the reason we have Brant here this week is because of his comedic abilities. As a standup comedian he has appeared in countless comedy clubs, casinos and colleges all across the country. He tells great stories and if you listen to him long enough you’ll get a slice on how all those other projects came to be.

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