Open main menu

Jeff Ross

  (Redirected from Jeffrey Ross)

Jeffrey Ross Lifschultz (born September 13, 1965),[1] known professionally as Jeff Ross, is an American stand-up comedian, writer, director and actor. He is also known as the "Roastmaster General" for his insult comedy and his multiple appearances at celebrity roasts held by the New York Friars Club and on the Comedy Central Roast television series.[2][3][4][5] In 2009 the Chicago Tribune called Ross "the new millennium Don Rickles."[6]

Jeff Ross
Jeff Ross, Joint Base Andrews, May 2016 (cropped).jpg
Ross in May 2016
PseudonymRoastmaster General
Birth nameJeffrey Ross Lifschultz
Born (1965-09-13) September 13, 1965 (age 54)
MediumStand-up, television, film, books
Years active1995–present
GenresInsult comedy, observational comedy, black comedy, cringe comedy, satire
Subject(s)Jewish culture, popular culture, self-deprecation, sex, current events, religion
Notable works and rolesComedy Central Roasts
Patriot Act: A Jeffrey Ross Home Movie
The Burn with Jeff Ross

His directorial debut, the 2006 documentary Patriot Act: A Jeffrey Ross Home Movie, won the prize for Best Film at the Comedia film festival held at the Just for Laughs comedy festival in Montreal.[7][8]

Early lifeEdit

Ross was raised in Newark, New Jersey until he was in second grade, then his family moved to Union, New Jersey[disambiguation needed] and later to Springfield, New Jersey, where he attended Jonathan Dayton High School.[9][10] He is of Jewish heritage and has a younger sister named Robyn.[1][11][12] His mother Marsha died from leukemia when he was 14 years old.[9][12][13] His father died of drug-related causes when Ross was 19 years old—Ross was attending college at the time and his sister was a senior in high school.[9][13] His father owned and ran Clinton Manor Catering, a catering business that was started by Ross's great-grandmother.[14] The business was located in Newark, New Jersey and later moved to Union, New Jersey.[disambiguation needed][14]

Ross attended Boston University as a broadcasting and film major with a minor in political science.[15] [16] He graduated from the Boston University College of Communication in 1987.[16] Ross also worked as the music director at the university's student-run radio station WTBU in addition to working for the university's public radio station WBUR where he worked as an audio engineer.[16]

Ross credits his tough upbringing in New Jersey for helping him develop his talent for insult comedy, which he says he developed as a defense-mechanism.[17][18] Ross stated in an interview with The Atlanta Constitution: "Everyone in my family was good at [roasting]. I had to quickly learn not just to take a joke but to give it back. My uncle Murray was the first to bust my chops. We called him mean Murray."[18]

CareerEdit

Stand-up, writing and roast comedyEdit

Ross began performing stand-up in 1994 at open mic nights at The Boston Comedy Club, a now defunct comedy venue in New York City.[19] By 1995 he was also performing at such comedy clubs as the Comedy Cellar and Stand Up NY.[20] That same year he was invited by the New York Friars Club to participate in a roast of actor Steven Seagal.[15][17]

Ross would go on to become a regular at the Friars Club roasts and was given the title of "Roastmaster General".[21][22] The Friars Club's first televised event was the roast of Drew Carey that was broadcast on Comedy Central in 1998.[12][23] Ross credits a particular joke that he made at the expense of attendees Bea Arthur and Sandra Bernhardt at the 1999 roast of Jerry Stiller for taking his roasting career to the next level.[24] That same year Jimmy Kimmel hired Ross as a writer on The Man Show and Ross also wrote some of the punchlines for Billy Crystal's monologue at the Oscars in 2000.[12]

In 2003 Comedy Central began producing their own celebrity roasts.[23] Ross has been a roaster at all Comedy Central roasts since the 2005 roast of Pamela Anderson.[2][15] During his Comedy Central Roast appearances Ross became known for dressing-up in edgy and sometimes controversial costumes: He roasted Charlie Sheen dressed as Muammar Gaddafi; he roasted Rob Lowe dressed as Purple Rain-era Prince on an episode that aired five months after the musician's death; he roasted Roseanne Barr dressed as the late football coach Joe Paterno during the height of the Penn State child sex abuse scandal; he also roasted James Franco wearing cornrows and a neck tattoo in reference to Franco's character in the 2012 film Spring Breakers.[12][25]

Ross has participated as a roaster on the following Comedy Central Roasts:

Ross has also written for, performed in and/or produced the roasts of the following celebrities:

 
Ross at Joint Base Andrews in May 2016

Ross has taken part in several USO tours and has performed stand-up comedy at US Military bases in Afghanistan, Guantanamo Bay and Iraq.[12] Ross first traveled to Iraq in 2003 as part of a comedy tour hosted by Drew Carey.[26] In 2005 Ross released the film Patriot Act: A Jeffrey Ross Home Movie, which he both produced and directed and which documented his experiences on the Iraq tour.[26] That same year the film won the prize for Best Film at the Comedia film festival, a comedy film festival held annually in Montreal as part of the Just for Laughs comedy festival.[8] In 2006 the film was shown on Showtime and also screened at that year's South by Southwest Film Festival.[26][27] In 2017 the USO made Ross the Ambassador of Veterans Outreach for the Artists & Athletes Alliance.[28]

Ross published his first book, I Only Roast the Ones I Love: Busting Balls Without Burning Bridges, in 2009.[28][29] The book recounts his journey to becoming Roastmaster General and includes tips on writing roast jokes and how to put on a roast.[28][29]

Ross was the creator and host of the comedy panel show The Burn with Jeff Ross, which aired on Comedy Central for two seasons from 2012 to 2013.[30]

In 2015, Ross starred in the Comedy Central special Jeff Ross Roasts Criminals: Live from Brazos County Jail, where he performed stand-up comedy for male and female convicts in Brazos County, Texas.[31][32] The following year he released Jeff Ross Roasts Cops where he performed for members of the Boston Police Department.[2][28]

Ross and comedian Brian Moses launched Jeff Ross Presents Roast Battle on Comedy Central in 2016.[31] The show consists of comedians competing in one on one roast battles where the winners are decided by Ross and a panel of guest judges.[31][32] Ross also appeared as a battler in final episode of the show's third season in a battle with NBA player Blake Griffin.[33]

In 2018 Ross and fellow comedian Dave Attell embarked on their Bumping Mics comedy tour.[34] Footage of their tour was also released in a three-part special on Netflix.[35] The Bumping Mics comedy special was filmed during three of their performances at the Comedy Cellar in New York City.[35] Their shows consisted of observational and political humor interspersed with Ross and Attell roasting one another as well as members of the audience.[36][37] The comedians would also invite some of the audience members on stage, some of whom included Bob Saget, Gilbert Gottfried, Michael Che, Amy Schumer, Nikki Glaser and Paul Rudd.[35]

Starting in 2019, Netflix began airing the series Historical Roasts, where Ross hosts fictionalized versions of comedy roasts for figures like Abraham Lincoln and Anne Frank.

Acting and voice workEdit

One of Ross's first acting roles was a small part in the 1996 comedy film Celtic Pride.[38][39] Some of his other film roles include a security guard the film Stuck on You (2003) and a wedding band leader in the film Along Came Polly (2004).[7][40] Ross's television acting work includes roles on HBO's Six Feet Under and Crashing, and Showtime's Weeds.[21][41] He also played a dramatic role on CBS's CSI.[7][21]

Ross was co-creator of the satirical animated program Where My Dogs At? that was broadcast on MTV2 in 2006. The series centers around characters Buddy, a beagle voiced by Ross, and Woof, a bulldog voiced by Tracy Morgan.[42] Ross has also voiced a characters on two episodes of the animated series Future-Worm! as well as on an episode of the live-action/animated series Happy![43][44] An animated version of Jeff Ross (voiced by Ross himself) appears in an episode of Batman: The Brave and the Bold that aired in 2012.[45] During the episode his character attends a roast of Batman.[45]

Other appearances as himselfEdit

Ross appeared in the 2005 documentary The Aristocrats about the famous dirty joke of the same name.[40]

He was the guest on the debut episode of the WTF with Marc Maron podcast in 2009 and also appeared on the podcast's 800th episode in 2017.[28]

Ross appeared in the third tournament of Celebrity Poker in 2004, but lost in his first match.[21] He was also a competitor on the seventh season of Dancing with the Stars that aired in 2008.[21] During rehearsal for their first dance, his dancing partner Edyta Śliwińska accidentally poked Ross in the eye, causing a scratched cornea.[21] Against medical advice, Ross continued the competition, but the couple were the first to be eliminated.[21]

In 2011 Ross visited the protesters of the Occupy movement in Los Angeles to support their cause.[38] He took to the microphone at a stage set-up at Los Angeles City Hall.[38] His talk included roasting Wall Street and the big banks.[38]

In 2019, he appeared on an episode of ‘’Crank Yankers’’ as himself.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Jewish Insider's Daily Kickoff: September 13, 2018 - Birthdays". Haaretz. Tel Aviv, Israel. September 13, 2018. Retrieved May 1, 2019. Comedian who earned the title "Roastmaster General" for his insult comedy and Comedy Central celebrity roasts, Jeff Ross (born Jeffrey Ross Lifschultz) turns 53...
  2. ^ a b c Terry, Gross (September 13, 2016). "Having Thick Skin Is A 'Survival Technique,' Says Comic Jeff Ross". Fresh Air. Event occurs at 0:30. NPR. Retrieved May 1, 2019. ...but he's best known for the Comedy Central celebrity roasts; he's one of the producers and has been a roaster on each one since 2005.
  3. ^ Zinoman, Jason (July 29, 2016). "Insult Comedy as Blood Sport: The Rise of the Roast Battle". The New York Times. New York City, New York, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019. When Mr. Ross, who had become known as the Roastmaster General because of his performances on Comedy Central’s celebrity events...
  4. ^ Pilot, Jessica (November 7, 2014). "The Roast Battle: 'Like Fight Club for Comedians,' Says Jeffrey Ross". The Village Voice. New York City, New York, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019. Today, Jeff Ross is practically a household name. He has been the Roastmaster at the venerable Friars Club, and is part of every Comedy Central Roast...
  5. ^ Brownstein, Bill (July 9, 2011). "Just for Laughs 2011: Roastmaster Jeffrey Ross has a serious side". Montreal Gazette. Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Retrieved May 1, 2019. Ross is the current New York Friars’ Club Roastmaster General and a regular on the Comedy Central Roasts.
  6. ^ Johnson, Steve (October 13, 2009). "Mr. Cruel". Chicago Tribune. Chicago, Illinois, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019. He got to this place, as the new millennium Don Rickles, partly thanks to an insult-loving uncle, partly as a result of working in his dad's New Jersey catering business, where a multicultural work crew loved to bust on the boss' son.
  7. ^ a b c Adalian, Josef (October 20, 2004). "Ross roasts lead to toast from Fox". Variety. Los Angeles, California, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  8. ^ a b Zaino III, Nick A. (September 28, 2005). "Comedia: Laughing Stock of Film Festivals". Paste. Decatur, Georgia, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  9. ^ a b c Considine, Bob (September 29, 2011). "Take 5 with Jeffrey Ross". The Star-Ledger. Newark, New Jersey, United States. Archived from the original on May 2, 2019. Retrieved May 1, 2019. I grew up in Newark, Union and Springfield. ... So we lived in Newark until I was in second grade, then we jumped to Union and then to Springfield, where I kind of stayed for a while. I lost my Mom when I was 14 and my Dad when I was 19...
  10. ^ I Only Roast the Ones I Love: Busting Balls Without Burning Bridges. Simon & Schuster. p. 64. Retrieved May 1, 2019. It wasn't until I reached Jonathan Dayton Regional High School in Springfield that I discovered the great power of the put-down.
  11. ^ Wootliff, Raoul (January 10, 2018). "Chris Rock bares soul in roaringly honest Israel debut". Retrieved May 1, 2019. Veteran roaster Jeff Ross..repeatedly told the audience of his Jewish roots, noting, “I love my people and you are my people...”
  12. ^ a b c d e f Buckland, Jason (January 27, 2017). "Roastmaster General Jeffrey Ross Stands Up for More than Comedy". Playboy. Chicago, Illinois, United States: Playboy Enterprises. Archived from the original on March 13, 2017. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  13. ^ a b Terry, Gross (September 13, 2016). "Having Thick Skin Is A 'Survival Technique,' Says Comic Jeff Ross". Fresh Air. Event occurs at 29:05. NPR. Retrieved April 21, 2019. Terry Gross: "So you mention your parents. Your mother died when you were 14. Did she have cancer?" Jeff Ross: "She had leukemia." TG: "Then your father died when you were 19; that was sudden and unexpected." JR: "Yeah, doin' stupid stuff. Drugs." TG: "Oh really?" JR: "He was a single guy starting to make money in the 80s. I was away at college, my sister was a senior in highschool."
  14. ^ a b Terry, Gross (September 13, 2016). "Having Thick Skin Is A 'Survival Technique,' Says Comic Jeff Ross". Fresh Air. Event occurs at 27:23. NPR. Retrieved April 21, 2019. My great grandmother Rose, she started it a long time ago in the 50s...It was in Newark, New Jersey and then later in Union, New Jersey. It was called Clinton Manor Catering. Judy Bloom wrote about it in her book "Wifey".
  15. ^ a b c Pemberton, Patrick S. (October 2, 2014). "Roastmaster General: Comedian Jeff Ross on the art of the roast". The Tribune. San Luis Obispo County, California, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019. After losing both parents while in his teens, the New Jersey native studied communications at Boston University...
  16. ^ a b c Sullivan, Jim (July 31, 2017). "Jeff Ross: Roastmaster General". Cape Cod Times. Hyannis, Massachusetts, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  17. ^ a b Johnson, Steve (October 13, 2009). "Mr. Cruel". Chicago Tribune. Chicago, Illinois, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  18. ^ a b Ho, Rodney (July 18, 2014). "'Roastmaster General' born to insult". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Dunwoody, Georgia, United States. p. D4. Retrieved May 1, 2019 – via Newspapers.com. Ross said his ability to burn people goes back to goes back to childhood in New Jersey. 'Everyone in my family was good at it. I had to quickly learn not just to take a joke but to give it back. My uncle Murray was the first to bust my chops. We called him mean Murray. He'd make fund of my braces, my buck teeth. I worked at my parent's catering hall and was the boss' son. He would give me a lot of crap.'
  19. ^ Thangevelo, Debashine (November 19, 2015). "Feel the burn of Ross's roast . ." Cape Argus. Cape Town, South Africa. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  20. ^ "Comedy". New York. New York City, New York, United States. August 28, 1995. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  21. ^ a b c d e f g Brownstein, Bill (July 9, 2011). "Just for Laughs 2011: Roastmaster Jeffrey Ross has a serious side". Montreal Gazette. Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  22. ^ Bliss, Jessica (March 13, 2012). "Roastmaster General takes aim at Nashville". The Tennessean. Nashville, Tennessee, United States. p. 3A. Retrieved May 1, 2019 – via Newspapers.com. The roastmaster designation is a title bestowed upon him by the New York Friar's Club, a private fraternity in New York City made up most of famous comedians.
  23. ^ a b Love, Matthew (March 13, 2015). "Every Comedy Central Roast, From Worst to Best". Rolling Stone. New York City, New York, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  24. ^ Holtzclaw, Mike (June 18, 2015). "The host with the 'roasts': Comedian Jeff Ross brings merciless style of stand-up to The Norva". Daily Press (Virginia). Newport News, Virginia, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019. It was in that role, at a 1999 roast of Jerry Stiller, that Ross got off an unspeakably vulgar zinger that simultaneously nailed both Sandra Bernhard and Bea Arthur (though Ross notes that it was Arthur's wordless "stink-eye" reaction that elevated the joke to comedic genius). To this day, he says, that is the joke that truly took his career to a higher level, the one that people still repeat to him.
  25. ^ Venutolo, Anthony (August 6, 2012). "Did comic Jeffrey Ross go too far at Roseanne's roast?". NJ.com. Iselin, New Jersey, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  26. ^ a b c Heffernan, Virginia (May 27, 2006). "The Iraq Tour: A Comic's Education". The New York Times. New York, New York, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  27. ^ "SXSW Film Festival 2006 Line Up" (PDF). sxsw.com. South by Southwest. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  28. ^ a b c d e Seabaugh, Julie (November 14, 2017). "Is Jeff Ross the Most Important Political Comic in Trump's America?". LA Weekly. Los Angeles, California, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  29. ^ a b Ross, Jeffrey (2009). I Only Roast the Ones I Love: Busting Balls Without Burning Bridges. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 9781439102794.
  30. ^ Moser, John J. (March 23, 2018). "INTERVIEW: Comedian Jeff Ross, at Sands today with Dave Attell, tells how venue gave birth to the tour, talks about roasting career and new podcast". The Morning Call. Allentown, Pennsylvania, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  31. ^ a b c Blistein, Jon (March 31, 2016). "Jeff Ross 'Roast Battle,' 'Police Roast' Headed to Comedy Central". Rolling Stone. New York City, New York, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  32. ^ a b "Finally, the Comedy Roast Competition Battle is Coming to Television". The Interrobang. Orange Pop Media. March 31, 2016. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  33. ^ "Comedy Central Announces Judges, Battler for Season 3 of Jeff Ross Presents Roast Battle" (Press release). New York: Comedy Central. July 31, 2018. Retrieved April 30, 2019.
  34. ^ "Dave Attell and Jeffrey Ross: Two Giants, Bumping Mics on Tour". The Interrobang. Orange Pop Media. March 1, 2018. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  35. ^ a b c Hooper, Ben (December 7, 2018). "Attell and Ross: 'Real hero' of 'Bumping Mics' is 'the punchline'". United Press International. Boca Raton, Florida, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  36. ^ Wiener, Sophie (November 30, 2018). "REVIEW: 'Bumping Mics with Jeff Ross and Dave Attell' is crude and mean, yet heartwarming". The Daily Free Press. Boston, Massachusetts, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  37. ^ Dahms, Sara (July 27, 2017). "Bumping Mics With Dave Attell and Jeff Ross at JFL". The Interrobang. Orange Pop Media. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  38. ^ a b c d "Jeffrey Ross At Occupy LA: Part Stand Up, Part Soap Box". The Huffington Post. AOL. October 21, 2011. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  39. ^ Kurp, Josh (August 5, 2012). "Jeff Ross Went To Roseanne's Comedy Central Roast Dressed As Joe Paterno". Uproxx. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  40. ^ a b H, Tim (April 22, 2010). "Seven Questions: Jeffrey Ross, Comedian/Author of I Only Roast the Ones I Love". LAist. Los Angeles, California, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  41. ^ Otterson, Joe (March 8, 2019). "'Crashing' canceled after three seasons at HBO". Chicago Tribune. Chicago, Illinois, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  42. ^ Zoromski, Brian (June 6, 2006). "Jeffrey Ross on Where My Dogs At?". IGN. San Francisco, California, United States: Ziff Davis. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  43. ^ Flores, Terry (July 28, 2016). "Get to Know Ryan Quincy, Creator of Disney XD's New Series 'Future-Worm'". Variety. Los Angeles, California, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  44. ^ "@realjeffreyross". Twitter. April 24, 2019. Retrieved May 1, 2019. I play Pile Of Twigs and @pattonoswalt plays a unicorn named Happy on tonight’s episode of “Happy”. Watch and enjoy 10pm on @SYFY if you’re a dark fucked up person. #SeeHappy @happysyfy
  45. ^ a b Strait, Patrick (January 31, 2012). "Jeff Ross talks Batman, losing his virginity, roasting Minnesota". City Pages. Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States. Retrieved May 1, 2019.

External linksEdit