Just For Laughs Festival: Jean Smart To Receive Award; Amber Ruffin To Host Virtual Event — Update

UPDATE, July 13: Just For Laughs Montreal has announced that Hacks star Jean Smart will be honored with its Comedy Performance of the Year award. Hosting the Just For Laughs Awards Show will be Amber Ruffin.

PREVIOUS, June 29: Just For Laughs Montreal on Tuesday took the wraps off its 2021 comedy festival, saying it will run July 26-31 and feature in-person stand-up shows in Montreal as well as for the first time shows in Los Angeles and New York City in a nod to travel restrictions due to the pandemic.

The festival, which went online-only in 2020, also announced a lineup that includes Kevin Hart, Bert Kreischer, Maria Bamford, Patton Oswalt, Yamaneika Saunders, Gina Yashere, and SNL‘s Bowen Yang, among others.

Dave Chappelle will receive this year’s Comedy Person of the Year Award from the fest and also will appear. Other honorees announced today include Jason Sudeikis and Bill Lawrence of Ted Lasso, who will be given the Comedy Series of the Year Award; Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo will receive the Comedy Writers of the Year Award for Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar; and Yang will be given the Breakout Comedy Star of the Year Award.

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The fest’s annual awards show will stream online for free for the first time on July 28 at hahaha.com.

“We’re so proud of this year’s award show as we’re starting to come out of what was a really hard time for our comedy community,” said Bruce Hills, Just For Laughs president. “We’re honoring comedy storytellers who entertained and inspired us through this challenging past year. We’re thrilled that for the first time, we are able to invite audiences to join us online. It’s going to be a really great celebration.”

For its New York City hub, The Daily Show correspondent Dulcé Sloan will host a night featuring live performances by Todd Barry, Michael Kosta, Marina Franklin and others. It will air for free online beginning July 28. In L.A., Carol’s Second Act alum Sabrina Jalees will host a night that will feature live sets from Yashere, Maz Jobrani, Alonzo Bodden, Jeremy Hotz, Liza Treyger, and Rachel Feinstein live. It will stream free online beginning July 29.

Organizers also said this year’s edition will include regular programming like The Nasty Show, The Alternative Show, Comedy Night in Canada, New Faces showcases and shows programmed by Kevin Hart’s Laugh Out Loud brand. The ComedyPRO industry conference will also return in digital form.

More programming will be announced next month.

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