Larry Wilmore is an American political satirist, writer, producer, television host, actor, media critic, and comedian. On May 9, 2014 Comedy Central announced that Wilmore would host a new series to replace The Colbert Report, The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore, set to premiere in January 2015.
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UPDATE: Thanks so much for all the questions. I really enjoyed it, but I have to go.
I am Larry Wilmore, host of The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore. New episodes return Monday, February 22nd at 11:30/10:30c on Comedy Central. I'll be here at 11:00am ET today to start answering your questions. Ask Me Anything!
A few months ago, a segment from your show received a lot of flak about two of your contributors writing off the importance of discovering water on mars, and it came off as disrespect to your guest, Bill Nye. My question is, did you have any reservations when planning this segment? It seems like a pretty easy read to see that it would have gone poorly, but it still made air. What would you have done differently, if you could go back and do it again?
It was just a conversation. People are allowed to have a point of view. Bill Nye had a great time on that panel. He's been on the show a couple of times. People are allowed to have opinions. For the life of me, I really don't understand why people are so upset that someone would disagree with Bill Nye. I was on Bill's side of that, but still, who cares? It's just a conversation.
I loved your work on the Daily Show, and even enjoyed the first few episodes of your show back when it started.
Since then, however, it appears that the show has done nothing but pander to the lowest common racial tensions denominator. You turn every issue into a social commentary on race, even when it doesn't make sense.
I get that you're black, a lot of your friends are black, and that that's funny, but Trevor does a great job without going overboard. Why can't you?
One of the missions of the show when we started was to be an answer to The Daily Show and focus on race, class and gender. It's really those three things, though it seems like a lot of talk on race. It's one of the ways we were distinguishing ourselves from The Daily Show.
Have you ever filmed any episodes of The Nightly Show where you later felt like you didn't represent a topic or viewpoint in enough depth, or you just felt like you represented the wrong side of the issue in hindsight? Do you have any episodes which you are now at least a bit ashamed of?
I'm not ashamed of any episodes, but I always feel like I wish we had more time or I wish I would've said this. That happens more often than naught because we only have about seven minutes to talk about something, so I'm always left with the feeling that there wasn't enough said.
What has been your favorite moment of The Nightly Show so far?
Going down to Baltimore to talk to the gangs. I had no idea what to expect and it really was a great moment for the show.
Was there ever a guest on your show you despised but had to act cordial towards them because that is your job?
Yes, the lady who said she wanted to go to Mars. I hated her every second she was on my show.
Did you have any idea Jon Stewart would announce his retirement so soon after you started your show? Would you have had any interest in hosting the Daily Show? How do you think Trevor Noah is doing as host?
No, I was surprised by that. And I did not have any interest in hosting The Daily Show. I think Trevor's doing a great job.
Have you forgotten about Bill Cosby yet?
No I haven't forgotten about that motherfucker.
What was it like working on The Office?
It was a lot of fun. We thought we were going to be canceled the first and second seasons, so we just went for it with every story.
What is the number one thing on the list of stuff you won't comment on during this AMA? :)
Do you think President Obama has done enough to champion African American causes during his tenure? What should he have done?
Yes and no. The fact of his presidency is one of the biggest historical achievements, but there haven't been any policy changes that have done anything for African Americans in my mind, specifically.
What would you Ask Trump in a Live Interview?
I would ask him to STOP IT, and I would ask him to stop it right now.
How did your comedy change when your role changed from contributor on the Daily Show to being a host with a team of writers?
Becoming a host of your own show was the biggest challenge. My comedy didn't change only my schedule.
Couldn't get away from that sweet sweet Jesus blood wine?
That's exactly right. That's very funny
Hey Larry, I love your show and watch it every day that there's a new one on Hulu. I have a couple of questions; do you truly Feel The Bern? And if you had to vote for someone on the right, who would it be and why?
I like Bernie Sanders a lot personally. I haven't made up my mind who I would vote for. There's no one on the right who I could see voting for right now.
What advice do you have for aspiring late night TV writers? My dream is to intern at your show when I'm a junior.
Just start writing jokes and send them to everybody! Find out who you like the best and try to write in their voice.
Been watching the Bernie Mac show on netflix the last few weeks and I have been blown away by how great the show is.
It really makes me miss Bernie Mac a whole hell of a lot, what a hilarious human!
Any stories that you recall that make you miss Bernie?
Bernie was a very special comedian. He had an amazing ability to emote on screen. The story that sticks out -- Bernie and I were having a discussion and he said, very emphatically, "Man, just be yourself. Just be yourself, Larry. Be yourself." He said it several times and I just thought it was one of the coolest things.
Larry, why do you get so many off days? I was a teacher and I think you get more off days than I did!
Yeah, I'm really sorry. I first demanded 300 off days, but they wouldn't go for it, so this is what I'm left with. A brother's gotta recharge.
When did you decide on the alopecia look?
I believe that alopecia is a very underrated look.
What are your religious views/personal beliefs? As an atheist, I really like seeing Neil deGrasse Tyson on your show. The flat earth segment was beautiful!
I'm a recovering Catholic. I also consider myself Cath-nostic.
What's your best Jon Stewart story?
On my first show I was very nervous -- my first Daily Show. He said to just look in the camera and fucking give it to America. That was awesome and calmed me down.
Why do you feel the younger generation favors a comedic approach towards news? Do you find yourself in a position to report on news, or provide social commentary to other news outlets?
I find many young people are turning more to comedy programs now than actual news. It's a trend that's been going on for the last 10 years. I think a lot of it has to do with authenticity. I think sometimes they feel like they don't know if they can trust the actual news anymore.
Are you a Dr Who fan?
No, but my kids are, and they make fun of me everyday.
I had no idea you were in your mid-50s! How come black doesn't crack?
I know there's a scientific equation for it. I'll be sure to ask Neil deGrasse Tyson the next time he's on.
Waffles or pancakes?
I remember you from the Mtv half hour comedy hour. You did a joke about calling a sexline and everytime she said your voice it sounded like a robot. Oh you make me so hot "Larry Wilmore". My brother and I reference it to this day. Must've been 25 years ago.
Remember that joke?
I absolutely remember it. It was one of my favorites!
How can we get Obama to close Guantanamo?
It's not gonna happen. He would've closed it already. Don't get your hopes up.
Hey Larry, who are your top 5 black comedians? (Past and present)
In no order... I'll just say these, no order. Richard Pryor, Cosby, Chris Rock, Chappelle, early Dick Gregory. And yes it pains me to put Cosby on that list
How does such a big guy get by using such a tiny keyboard!??
I type in very small fonts