One of the biggest talents in modern comedy did one final stand-up special before he passed away, and it’s been kept under wraps until now.
Norm Macdonald, who died last September at the age of 61, privately filmed an unreleased hour-long special.
the acclaimed saturday night live The actor and comedian known for his deadpan expression was diagnosed with cancer in 2012, but kept his illness private. He was working on new material for a Netflix special when he had to go to the hospital in the summer of 2020.
“His test results weren’t good, so during the heart of the COVID-19 pandemic and literally the night before he had a procedure, I wanted to record this just in case, as he put it, things went wrong,” Lori. Jo Hoekstra, Macdonald’s longtime producing partner, tells the hollywood reporter. “It was his intention to have a special to share if something happened.”
The result was a special standing shot in Macdonald’s living room. The actor filmed the entire hour in one take. “It looks great and the material is fantastic,” says Hoekstra.
As it turned out, Macdonald made it through the medical procedure with flying colors and the pictures were literally thrown into a closet. But Macdonald fell seriously ill a year later, before her special could be properly filmed in front of an audience. “He ended up getting sick last August and September and he remembered that he had filmed this and asked me to find him so he could watch it,” says Hoekstra. “He ended up seeing it before he passed away.” Macdonald even suggested a characteristically self-deprecating title for the hour: Nothing special.
Netflix will premiere the surprise program – Norm Macdonald: Nothing Special ‚ on May 30.
The stand-up hour is probably a first in the comedy world: a final post-mortem joke and testimonial from a comedian who enjoyed defying containment. “From the various conversations I’ve had within our circle of friends in comedy and production, no one has ever heard of any comparison to this. [situation] – not even close,” says Hoekstra, who in addition to Nothing special, also produced Macdonald’s ABC sitcom Rule and his Netflix talk show Norm Macdonald has a show
The show will include clips of Adam Sandler, Conan O’Brien, Dave Chappelle, David Letterman, David Spade and Molly Shannon discussing Macdonald during the recent Netflix Is a Joke Fest.
“It makes me so happy to be able to share it, but it also makes me sad that I can’t share it with him,” says Hoekstra. “He didn’t do this out of shock. He filmed it because he loved his material and was very proud of his material. He worked very hard and it would have really upset him that he had done all that work and not been able to show it to everyone. He did it for stand-up. I just hope that people appreciate that he did this.”