TV Guide Network’s new weekly one-hour original series, TV Watercooler, premieres on Monday, January 23, 2006 at 8 PM (ET/PT). In this entertaining romp, hosts John Fugelsang (America’s Funniest Home Videos) and Debra Wilson (MAD TV and Family Guy) match wits, offer their candid opinions, and enjoy dishing on the week’s biggest TV events. With celebrity interviews, fan feedback from the streets of Hollywood, and signature segments, TV Watercooler is designed to be the original fun, plugged-in destination for every television fan.
Whether on stage or in front of the camera, John Fugelsang's intelligent humor and versatility have earned him critical acclaim and audience recognition across multiple entertainment mediums. From performing stand-up comedy at clubs and universities across the country, to acting on some of America’s highest rated TV programs (including CSI) to hosting VH1's live Town Hall meetings with Paul McCartney and Garth Brooks, to a stint hosting ABC's America's Funniest Home Videos, to being one of the youngest regular panelists on Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, John's proven himself a triple threat in the fields of acting, standup comedy, and TV hosting.
John began performing standup comedy in New York City, where his one man show, Junk Male, earned him rave reviews and a variety of awards, including New York Monologist of the Year at Lincoln Center from the Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs. His quick wit and ease with audiences led to a variety of broadcasting opportunities.
He honed his on-camera skills at VH1, hosting a variety of specials and interviewing such prominent music figures as Bruce Springsteen, Willie Nelson, James Taylor, Tony Bennett, Joey Ramone, and many others. His most memorable experience came when a planned 10-minute interview with George Harrison and Ravi Shankar stretched to a four-hour appearance. At one point, George began playing guitar and taking requests on camera. This was to be the former Beatle’s final performance on television. It was subsequently re-broadcast as George Harrison: The Last Performance.
John continued performing standup comedy, appearing at Montreal's Just for Laughs Festival and HBO's US Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen. He has also performed at clubs and colleges nationwide, both as a headliner and as a feature act for artists such as Bill Maher and Darrell Hammond. His love of American history and politics began influencing his comedy. So much so, that John became a favorite on ABC's Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, where he appeared 20 times, debating and discussing the issues of the day with such notable figures as the Rev. Jerry Falwell, Ralph Nader, Arianna Huffington, Erica Jong, and David Duke.
John achieved mainstream TV recognition while co-hosting ABC’s America’s Funniest Home Videos with Daisy Fuentes. He dipped his toe into both daytime and late-night hosting for NBC, working stints on Real Life and Later. He also performed standup comedy on several shows including NBC’s Friday Night, Comedy Showcase and Late Friday, VH1’s Stand up Spotlight, Comedy Central’s Standup Standup, and co-hosted Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve. During this period, John moonlighted on two highly-rated programs for VH1 UK, American Classic and Hey Watch This. He also appeared as the sidekick on CNBC’s talk show McEnroe.
John’s acting includes television appearances on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Beyond Belief, Becker, Lifetime's Two Cups of Joe, The Michael Richards Show, and the series finale of NBC's Providence, where he guest-starred as the sleazy best man at Melina Kanikaredes' wedding. His film appearances include Coyote Ugly and Somewhere in the City.
John was trained at New York University, Boston University, and Circle in the Square Theatre School. His diverse resume reflects a downright complicated background. He grew up on Long Island, New York, the first child of a Brooklyn father and southern mother. Both of John's parents were ex-clergy: his father an ex-Franciscan brother who had taught American History in Brooklyn, his mother an ex-nun who had been a hospital and leprosarium nurse in Africa. Thanks in part to this extremely rare kind of Catholic upbringing, standup comedy seemed a natural, affordable alternative to a life of extensive psychotherapy.
"A breath of fresh air...Imagine, a comedian who actually reads for his conversation points. Stunning" - Diane Werts, Newsday
"One of the single best comedy acts I have ever seen" - John Hoglund, Backstage
"A rapier wit...hip and hilarious." - Wayman Wong, NY Daily News
You can contact them here at: TVWatercooler@tvguide.comJohn Fugelsang Fast Facts:
- Parents are a former nun and a former Franciscan monk.
- First role was the Scarecrow in his elementary school's production of The Wizard of Oz.
- Made professional acting debut at 12 as the Second Player in a regional theater production of Hamlet.
- The acclaimed one-man show Junk Male won him a 1997 Manhattan Association of Cabaret and Clubs award and landed him a job with VH1.
- Engaged in heated debate with former KKK leader David Duke on a 2000 episode of Politically Incorrect.
- John Fugelsang Relationships:
- Charmien LaFramenta - Wife
- New York University, New York, NY