Hasan Minhaj Dings Deadline, Roasts IFC For Airing Will Ferrell’s ‘Semi-Pro’ Instead Of Spirit Awards In Opening Monologue

“We’re doing this totally independent, we don’t even have a distributor,” Independent Spirit Awards host Hasan Minhaj said from the broadcast-less Santa Monica Beach tent Saturday afternoon.

“The Independent Film Channel didn’t want the independent film awards!” Minhaj continued.

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“Take that in. IFC did not renew their contract. Let me reiterate how bad this is. The independent film channel did not want the independent film awards. That’s like if Jordan Peterson cut ties with divorced men,” he dinged.

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“I actually looked up what IFC chose to air right now instead of us. Any guesses? Semi-Pro starring Will Ferrell and Woody Harrelson. That’s what’s playing right now. Look at the star power of this room – and IFC was like, ‘Mmm, naw.'”

The comedian roasted Semi-Pro for being a bomb in its day, particularly for a Ferrell film, and one with bad wigs (the movie grossed only $44 million worldwide and was directed by former New Line and Comedy Central executive Kent Alterman).

Minhaj also took aim at Deadline, claiming it had “porn”-bait headlines. Well, excuuuuseee us! What’s worse than our headlines per the comedian? The comments in our stories.

“I can’t wait to hear about all these jokes on Deadline.com,” slammed Minhaj.

“There’s nothing I love more than dogsh*t clickbait journalism. I love how you guys make every headline sound like porn. Seriously how did we let Deadline become the most important website in our industry? It has the web layout of a Craigslist ad, and it governs our lives. You know when I figured out – they literally ran a story about how Steven Spielberg doesn’t have an idea right now. You think I’m kidding? Breaking news out of Berlin!”

“Deadline comments are just YouTube comments with CTE!” he added.

“We don’t do indie movies for the money or the exposure. We’re out here celebrating independent films. And by here I mean YouTube. That’s right, we are streaming live on YouTube.com. You know what’s crazy? When you all told your parents you wanted to move to LA to make it, this was their worst nightmare. They were afraid you’d end up in a tent with a brown man and a webcam,” said the Daily Show alum.

Bringing back full around in his monologue about the state of awards shows — the SAG Awards jettisoned to YouTube this year, and on Netflix in subsequent years, completely MIA from broadcast, Minhaj said. “Award shows are dead. My 2-year-old watches slime videos with more views than the Oscars. But you all showed up, which means you’re truly in it for the love of the game.”

While it’s freezing cold and rainy in some parts of L.A., the bad weather didn’t drift over here to Santa Monica where it’s sunny and 57 degrees.

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