The Just for Laughs comedy festival makes its UK debut at the O2 in London
Just For Laughs, the world’s largest comedy festival, is collaborating with live entertainment company AEG Presents to launch the event at London’s O2 in 2023.
The annual comedy festival, Just For Laughs London, runs from March 2-5, 2023 and features solo shows, live podcast recordings, conversation events and panels from UK-based artists and international stars.
Famously, British comedy icon Rowan Atkinson introduced Mr. Bean to world audiences at Montreal’s Just for Laughs festival in 1987. Although he had no dialogue, Atkinson insisted that Bean be featured in the French section of the program rather than the English segment as a way to gauge how physical comedy would translate to a non-English speaking audience.
Other British stars who have performed at Just For Laughs include John Oliver, Jimmy Carr, Jack Whitehall, Eddie Izzard, Gina Yashere, Sarah Millican, Stephen Fry, John Cleese and Lenny Henry.
Since its origins in 1983 in Montreal, the festival has spread to Toronto, Vancouver, Austin and Sydney. The 2021 North American festival unfolded as a hybrid event combining live online and in-person performances from Montreal, New York and Los Angeles, with Dave Chappelle honored with the Comedy Person of the Year award and Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo receiving the Comedy Writer of the Year Award for their hit comedy, “Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar”.
Bruce Hills, Chairman of Just For Laughs, said: “We couldn’t be happier to produce a Just For Laughs festival in the UK, celebrating the contribution and influence of British comedy on JFL as well as the industry. in general. ”
Charles Décarie, President and CEO of the Just for Laughs Group, said, “Just for Laughs has produced many top-notch comedy festivals and tours in cities around the world, and we are now beyond thrilled to planting roots by adding a new comedy festival in one of the most notorious comedy cities in the world, London, England.
Steve Homer, CEO of AEG Presents UK, said: “We are delighted to be working with such a respected and talented company as Just For Laughs, and we look forward to bringing an incredible festival to The O2 next year.
Emma Bownes, Vice President of Venue Programming at The O2, added: ‘Just for Laughs are world leaders in comedy programming, and we look forward to welcoming top UK and global stars, as well as podcast recordings, table reads and breakout comics on multiple stages under our roof. We look forward to Just For Laughs LONDON returning to The O2 for years to come.