Ian Gelfand's job on Hot 97's first TV show, This Is Hot 97 is literally to weed out what's funny and what is not and structure the show in a way to convey a story without losing Hot 97's organic spontaneity. After years on the stand up circuit with comedians such as Dave Attell and Louis C.K., Ian expresses that while he does love shows such as Curb Your Enthusiasm,The Cosby Show, Cheers, Extras and This Is Hot 97, it is increasingly hard to make the man who's job is to find the funny, laugh:
After you sit in a club, night after night, doing two to three sets a night or going from club to club and watching. It's so hard to make you laugh now. Nothing makes you laugh. It's really difficult.
Before taking the helm as the executive producer of This Is Hot 97, he also helped with executive producing duties at Love & Hip Hop. According to Ian, one of the biggest differences between the two shows is that the personalities on Hot 97 are already established and known while some of the cast members of Love & Hip Hop are relatively unknown. Beyond simple comparisons, Ian calls This Is Hot 97 "one of my two favorite projects I have ever done" but states that his run with the show could be short lived:
I love it and I will always love it and it's one of my two favorite projects I have ever done in my entire life. It's really funny at times. But, you know after you do it a couple of times..you know, I'll do another season, maybe two and then you want to do the next thing.'
Check out PART TWO of CULTUREDAPPROVED's interview with Ian Gelfand for Inside The Laugh below: