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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Why Ira Glass Hates Producing and Mike Birbiglia Cut Witty Lines in Improv Comedy 'Don't Think Twice'

Taking the "improv movie" to the next level, Don't Think Twice is an inside look at the meaning of friendship in the shadow of success for an improv comedy troupe in NYC.

While many of us are working in tight-knit groups with friends and frequent collaborators, we have one thought in our back pocket: If one person in the group makes it, they can bring the rest up with them. This concept might be true in every creative world except the cutthroat business of live improvised comedy. Shows like SNL represent the only end-game career for many comedians, and the last true mainstream sporting arena for live comedy. But is it truly the right game for everyone? When does a joke go too far?

This is the subject of director Mike Birbiglia's Don't Think Twice, his sophomore effort as a director after a SXSW-winning run with his first film Sleepwalk With Me in 2012. Birbiglia's cinematic gaze has handled the world of comedy before, but not quite like this — playing deftly to an uproarious and emotional crowd at the packed Paramount theater in downtown Austin, the film seemed to have a strong effect on everyone in the room.

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