For the last two years, Comedy Central has been bringing you some of the most interesting and lesser known historical stories, and without fail, the narrators have always been, in a word, wasted. The hit show Drunk History has been entertaining audiences for two seasons now, and some of the key heads of the show, including creators Derek Waters and Jeremy Konner, were on hand to give us some great insight on the execution of the show, and what can be expected for season three!
1. All of the reenactments are shot in a day
The movie and TV business isn’t exactly known as a quick industry, but on this particular show, time and speed are of the essence. According to regular Taran Kilam, all of the story acting is done in a day. He broke down a usual day on set for this show.
“Usually we will shoot 3-4 lines at a time, and they will often play the narration about 10-12 times before we start rolling. So while that is playing it’s easy to work on catching all of the nuances. It’s alot of fun.”
2. The creators don’t and literally cannot, provide the alcohol
Waters and Konner told the press room that they have no say when it comes to the alcohol of choice used by their narrators. They said that while they aren’t even allowed to have a say, it seems like the poison of choice is usually wine or whiskey.
“Yeah legally we are not allowed to provide them with the alcohol,” said Konner. “So we basically tell them when they should start drinking, and then eventually we come to their home and film them.”
3. The team does their research
Waters and Konner also revealed that they have a team of production assists who do extensive research on their stories, including going to several libraries and museums in the specific area of focus. Waters, a self-proclaimed history buff, said that he would do the research himself, but that libraries are boring to him.
4. Taran Killam has never been blackout drunk
The title pretty much says it all here. When asked if he would ever appear on the show as the narrator as opposed to the reenactor, Killam revealed “You know what. I have never been black out drunk before. I’ve of course been tipsy and drunk before, but never gotten to that point. So I don’t think I’d be the right person to narrate. Who knows maybe come Drunk History Season 10.
5. What story lines are coming up
Throughout the first two seasons, Drunk History has taken us from Hawaii to Charleston, from sports figures to famous first ladies, and so much more. When asked what Season 3 has in store for the audience, Waters dropped some big hints of what’s to come.
“We are going to do an episode about games, which includes stories on Milton Bradley and Bobby Fischer (played by Taran Killam). There’s also a show about spies, including one involving Harriet Tubman. And lastly, we are going to space!”
6. They’ve got awesome guest stars lined up
In addition to telling the room what themes were coming up for Season 3, Konner dropped a few names that we will be seeing either for the first time or making a return to the Drunk History set.
“Oh yeah I mean Taran (Killam) will be coming back. Octavia Spencer will be playing Harriet Tubman that was a great one.” Some other people either mentioned or shown in the Season 3 teaser were Michael Cera, Jaleel White, Nick Johnson, Josh Hartnett and so many more!
7. They make sure the narrator is and stays legally drunk
Another little nugget revealed about the creation of the show is that the crew always has a breathalyzer on hand. They will not start filming until the narrator hits at least a 0.08, and they will check in on the level throughout the evening. They also do it to ensure of course that the narrator isn’t too drunk.
“We of course make sure that they aren’t going to die,” Waters said with a laugh. “And when we wrap up for the night, we always make sure that we let them sober up, or at least leave someone with them to ensure they are okay.”
8. The set is always laid back
In the panel after the press room, Killam mentioned how much easier it is to do this then his regular day job over at Saturday Night Live.
“At SNL, you have to come up with the skits, figure out what the character needs to sound like, what his little quirks are. In this show, you show up, the work has already been done. You don’t even need to come up with the intonation of the lines. All you have to do is lip sync. It’s just awesome.”
We hope you enjoyed the eight things we learned about Drunk History at Comic Con 2015! Are you excited for Season Three coming in September? Let us know in the comments!