Louis C.K. may have honed his comedy chops in stand up, but there is no ad-libbing in his FX show, “Louie.”
Despite regularly featuring famous comedians having casual conversations with each other, “Louie” sticks to a tight script written by C.K. himself.
“The show isn’t ad-libbed at all. Everything is scripted so that’s a misconception that a lot of people have,” “Louie” casting director, Gayle Keller, tells Business Insider. “They think we’re an improv like ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm,’ but that’s not it at all.”
Keller explains that “everything is written and everybody follows the script. The story stays pretty true to form from when we first get a script to the finished product — the dialogue is all pretty much intact.”
Even though “Louie” guest stars frequently include off-the-cuff comedians like Jerry Seinfeld, Sarah Silverman, and Ricky Gervais, Keller says they, too, have to stick with the lines written for them.
Keller adds that it “hasn’t been hard” for the comedians to stay true to the script because it is often written with people in mind to play certain roles.
“For example, if you know Todd Barry‘s work, you know he’s a very specific comedian and I think Louis writes towards his voice because Louis is so familiar with him and other comedians,” Keller explains. “So that’s a credit to him as a writer.”
But Louis does get a little help in the writers’ room.
“We have some new writers this season that we didn’t have last season, one of them is Steven Wright, who’s a stand-up comedian, and Pamela Adlon [comedian and Louis’ on-screen girlfriend],” adds Keller. “So I think these people contribute to making the script true to whatever comedian they want.”
It was announced this week that “Louie” has been picked up for a fifth season.
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