updated 07:40 pm EDT, Tue March 20, 2012
Comedians seek more freedom
Aziz Ansari has released his latest stand-up special, "Dangerously Delicious," directly to the Internet as a digital download, sidestepping traditional publishing routes in the comedy industry. The Parks and Recreation star is following in Louis C.K.'s footsteps, publishing a video himself rather than relying on traditional broadcasters such as Comedy Central or HBO.
"While I was trying to figure out the proper method of release, my friend and hilarious comedian Louis C.K. did his whole thing and it seemed to me that people really liked that model," Ansari wrote in a blog post. "So that was the route I decided to go."
Louis C.K. reportedly produced his stand-up show "Live at the Beacon Theater" for $250,000 and sold over 220,000 copies on his website for $5 each. The experiment turned out to be much more lucrative than expected, enabling him to donate $280,000 to charity.
Aside from the potential monetary benefits of direct-to-Internet publishing, comedians are also said to be attracted by the guarantee of total control over the project. Acts can be released without editing, censorship, advertisement or other interference.
Ansari has yet to comment on initial sales volume for "Dangerously Delicious," which was recorded at the Warner Theater in Washington DC. [via New York Times]