Things you didn’t know about the British comedian who is all set to headline India’s biggest chuckle fest
From being the poster boy for bad habits to turning into one of Britain and America’s best loved comedians, Russell Brand returns to the country (he first married Katy Perry here in 2010), but this time for a performance. As part of the second season of Comedy Central Chuckle Festival, the funny man, who is also an actor, author, and more fiercely, a political activist, will bring his signature one-liners and clever quips to town, apart from Mumbai and New Delhi. Being a bad boy gave him his share of ‘you’re fired’ though nothing can keep this reformed drug-addict from turning anything into a positive. Best known for his satire, whimsy and observational humour, we dig into his record books for trivia that befits Dr Nefario (the apt name of his character in Despicable Me).
1. Known for his kookie ways and sex addiction, the comedian was a postman before he became very famous. Brand became a postman to try and bed women, as he thought he could chat them up when delivering letters. “I thought as a mail man, sex would be everywhere for me. Simply not true. It was a series of doors being closed in my face,” he laments, but then went on to steal letters to ‘cheer himself up’!
2. He was fired from MTV on September 12, 2001, only a day after the tragic 9/11 attacks. And it wasn’t his work that got him in trouble, but the fact that he dressed up as Osama bin Laden and showed up.
3.Apart from various nefarious accolades, this 40-year-old was once named the World’s Sexiest Vegetarian. The comedian has been a herbivore since he was 14, and he turned vegan after watching the 2011 documentary Forks Over Knives – a film about the benefits of being vegan.
3.In October 2008, Brand and BBC presenter, Jonathan Ross got into trouble after leaving abusive and sexual messages on Faulty Towers actor, Andrew Sach’s answering machine. They went on to detail Brand’s relationship with Sach’s granddaughter, Georgina Baillie, then a performer with the dance troupe Satanic Sluts.
4.Brand has never voted in his life. In fact, he’s called himself Mr Don’t Vote. But following his interview with the Labour party’s Ed Miliband, he urged people to vote for change.
5. When he was 16 years old, his dad, Ronald, who hardly met him otherwise, took him on a trip to the Far East, and bought the youngster prostitutes in Hong Kong. Travelling on to Singapore, Thailand and Bali, it goes without saying what the trip’s agenda was.
6. You may remember 5ive, the boy band from England comprising Sean Conlon, Ritchie Neville, Scott Robinson, J Brown and Abz Love. That line up just might have been different. Brand too auditioned for the band, belting out Robbie Williams and George Michael tracks. “I did audition for the boy band. That was pretty bad. I was only 20, I didn’t know what I was doing and I was on drugs,” he confessed.
June 27, at White Orchid Convention Centre, Outer Ring Road. Tickets (`3,000 upwards) on meraevent.com
— Aakanksha Devi