Comedian Jermaine Fowler: from stand-up to ‘Sorry to Bother You’

Annapurna Pictures(NEW YORK) — When comedian Jermaine Fowler was performing at open mic nights in New York’s Times Square, he had no idea he would be an announcer at the Emmy Awards, get his own comedy special, or share a screen with Armie Hammer — but that’s just what happened.

Fowler, who also starred in the CBS comedy Superior Donuts, is now appearing in Sorry to Bother You, alongside Hammer, Thor: Ragnarok star Tessa Thompson, and Walking Dead veteran Steven Yeun.  The critically acclaimed satire stars Atlanta’s Lakeith Stanfield as a man who becomes a successful telemarketer by adopting a “white voice.”

“I got into to standup because I wanted to be an actor and then I ended up loving standup for the next eleven years,” Fowler recalled to Good Morning America.

He immediately fell in love with his ability to be unscripted.

“It’s like raising a child in a way — you have a joke that’s a raw idea and you have to groom it over time,” he explained.

Fowler produced and starred in his own Showtime comedy special Give ‘Em Hell, Kid in 2015, a feat many around him doubted was possible.

“Looking back, that was one of the most awesome things that I’d ever done,” he said. “And I’d implore every young comic to try it out, owning your material and body of work.”

The comedian describes Sorry to Bother You as a pivotal moment in his career. “It was the first movie I’ve ever done. It was very monumental. I got in stand up to do movies but when I got the gig I was nervous,” he said.

While the moment was something he always dreamed of, Fowler now has bigger goals and dreams.

“There are still things I want to do,” he says. “I can’t celebrate too hard yet.”

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