2017-03-16 / Arts & Entertainment News

Marlon Wayans returns to club circuit; plans Improv stop

BY TOM SCANLON
Florida Weekly Correspondent


Marlon Wayans will perform five shows March 17-19 at the Palm Beach Improv at CityPlace in West Palm Beach. 
PHOTO BY ROC PERRY Marlon Wayans will perform five shows March 17-19 at the Palm Beach Improv at CityPlace in West Palm Beach. PHOTO BY ROC PERRY Believe it or not, Marlon Wayans — the hottest of the brothers, his lady fans would tell you — got started late in the comedy club game. With his older brothers getting him into the business, he had been a comic actor on TV and in movies for years — until he gave standup comedy a try.

Busy as he is as writer-producer-star of movie projects such as the upcoming film “Naked,” the recent spoof “50 Shades of Black” and the pre-production of “White Chicks 2” (he says there’s a 75 percent chance it will be made), why does he still tour comedy clubs?

“I don’t know,” he said with a just-woke-up yawn a little before noon during a recent phone interview. “I think I’m sick. Who would do this at this point in their life?

“I just started doing (stand-up) five years ago. I fell in love with it,” Mr. Wayans, 44, said. “I love connecting with the audiences. It’s kind of like the glue to everything I’ve been doing.”

His current comedy tour brings him to the Palm Beach Improv for five shows over March 17-19.

Mr. Wayans is the youngest sibling of Nadia Wayans, Shawn Wayans, Keenen Ivory Wayans, Damon Wayans Sr., Dwayne Wayans and Kim Wayans — quite a show-business family. Marlon Wayans got early training by attending Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts in New York City, the school portrayed in the movie and television series “Fame.”

The most curious Wayan, Dwayne, is perhaps the least well known. “My brother Dwayne always played the dead guy on ‘In Living Color,’” Marlon Wayans said. “He’s quite interesting, a really interesting life. He literally failed at everything in life. But he tried. He tried everything for six months, from being in the Army to being homeless to acting to being crazy to being correct.”

According to Mr. Wayans, Dwayne is simultaneously the most and least funny of the Wayans: “He was so not funny he was hilarious, the best guy to watch,” he said.

As far as stand-up comics, Mr. Wayans’ historic favorites are Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy and Steve Martin. “Currently, I love Bill Burr,” he said. “And Louis C.K. My humor is nothing like theirs.”

No, Mr. Wayans specializes in comedy that is big and broad — literally, in “White Chicks,” when he hit the makeup chair for hours and donned a dress to play a white woman.

If in real life he had to take over the body of a white chick, who would it be?

After letting out an exclamation, Mr. Wayans decided, “Probably Taylor Swift — just so I could get that close to Kanye (West) and punch him in the neck if he tried to take my trophy.”

That might be the closest Mr. Wayans comes to an awards ceremony, but no worries for him, he loves doing spoof movies — his credits include “Scary Movie,” “Scary Movie 2,” Little Man” and Dance Flick.” He also loves hitting the comedy circuit.

Any bad experiences on tour?

“I never had a bad comedy club moment,” he said. “Every comedy club moment is awesome, except one time in Alabama where a dude tried to fight me. I almost hit him in face with the microphone stand, so he threw a glass at me and left.”

How did that happen?

“Don’t come to a comedy club and sit in the front row and not want to get picked on,” Mr. Wayans said. ¦

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