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WTF: Weekly Trivia File

‘I think it's my responsibility to consider myself an artist’ Ricky Gervais

  • James Corden touched up Billy Connolly when they filmed scenes in the new Gullivers’ Travels blockbuster together – and the Big Yin didn’t mind a bit. The Glaswegain said: ‘After he completed every scene, he touched me. And it was always somewhere that he didn’t touch me after the previous scene had come to an end. It was an absolute joy for me. I was wondering where his hand was going to land next! I love young Mr Corden, we definitely bonded.’ But Connolly says new comics often intimidate him. I always find it unsettling when I watch other comics perform,’ he said. ‘When I go and see other comedians live, I think, “What am I going to do to top that?” I saw Rob Brydon on stage and he was so funny it scared me. He was funnier than me.’

  • Ed Byrne has become a father for the first time, after his wife Claire gave birth to a baby boy on Tuesday.

  • Stephen Merchant has accused Simon Cowell of killing Britain's cultural heritage. Speaking after funding cuts were announced at North London venue ArtsDepot, where he often previews his stand-up, Merchant said: ‘If we continue to let places like the ArtsDepot disappear, we're going to wake up one day and find our greatest artistic achievement is a dancing dog on Britain's Got Talent. And Simon Cowell will be nailing the coffin closed on our cultural heritage.’

  • Poorly researched question of the week, from The Sunday Times to Julian Clary: 'You’re performing with Joan Collins this year. Is she aware that you used to run her fan club?' Next week, they ask British Sea Power about offshore turbines... (For younger readers: Clary's stage name used to be the Joan Collins Fan Club. And Joan Collins is a B-movie actress made good)

  • A Bill Hicks rarity: A set from 1986, when he was a penniless comic working in Houston just posted onto YouTube:

  • James Corden proposed to his pregnant girlfriend Julia Carey by hiding the ring in her Christmas stocking. He then whisked her off on a romantic holiday in the Maldives.

  • CNN chiefs are running a risk by allowing comedian Kathy Griffin back on to their live New Year’s Eve broadcast, after she swore in last year’s show. Then, she stumbled over 'Balloon Boy' Falcon Heene's name, saying: ‘Fal... Fucking? Falcon? How do you say it?’ That got her fired, but she’s been allowed back – but warned to watch her mouth.

  • ‘This year in my contract, in addition to the stipulation that I have to give my money back if I swear, they also say they are just going to literally pull me,’ she said. ‘I have a list of [banned] words I should have looked at in my contract, but I didn't. I don't think it's changed much since the George Carlin routine. I haven't technically read it. I don't consider it to be binding - I'm an artist.’

  • Tweets of the week:
    Paul Sinha (@paulsinha): I had a delicious Christmas Day lunch on the same day that Elton/Furnish became parents. What a memorable day for turkey basters.
    Gary Delaney (@GaryDelaney):Just seen two men fighting over a crossword clue (2 down, 'altercation', 8 letters). I told them violence is not the answer.

    Viz Top Tips (@VizTopTips, @MrTomHux):
    SAVE MONEY on a justice system: simply show the suspect on Sky News, and people on Twitter can give you the verdict in seconds.

SOURCES: The Sun, Daily Mail, Twitter, The Sun, Sunday Times, Daily Mirror, The Hollywood Reporter

Published: 31 Dec 2010

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