Who: Jonathan Drubner, 34, L.A.
Job: Stand-up comedian; TV writer, producer, and host
Despite feeling under the weather, I attended the Heineken Premium Light party Monday at Park West (hey, free beer). Open to nightlife industry folks only, the event attracted about 200 influencers, one of whom parked a DeLorean out front (the owner let me sit in it; I felt like I was in Back to the Future). But the night’s real entertainment was the lineup of acts, including the local sketch comedy troupe Schadenfreude and the now-local DJ Toymaster. Brook Jay, who produced the event, has a knack for spotting new talent. One to watch: the night’s headlining comedian, Jonathan Drubner, a.k.a. Drub. He had the room roaring – including such notable attendees as Romeo Kapudija, of Patrick Dempsey’s Hyper Sport Racing team. “I’m his co-driver,” Kapudija told me.
Drub convinced me to hang out after the show, despite my many protestations in favor of going home and getting some sleep. What can I say? The guy is a charmer. We tossed back Heineken Premium Lights, of course, since it was the only beverage served. Later on a group of us headed to Green Dolphin Street for Boom Boom Room, the 15-year-old alternative-house dance party that attracts everyone from grown-up club kids to exotic dancers. So much for getting to bed early. Drub, who had been in town since Saturday, told me he had already hit many local hot spots, including Jerry Kleiner’s Room 21 (2110 S. Wabash Ave.), which officially opens this weekend. “I saw my first game at Wrigley, then had a big night out at Debonair and Crobar, and went to … Room 21, which was dope.” That’s Drub-speak for having a good time.
1. How did you get started in the entertainment biz?
I spent a summer in L.A. as a production intern on the Barry Levinson movie Jimmy Hollywood. The first day Barry walked in, I moronically said, “Can I help you?” He said, “No, I think I can direct the picture without your help.” He was right.
2. What was your first job out of college?
Production assistant on the Patrick Swayze movie Three Wishes. I was 22. So fun. Learned so much. That reminds me, shout-out to Victoria, that 30-year-old in accounting. Seriously.
3. What do you like and hate about stand-up comedy?
I love the instant gratification. I hate getting off the stage.
4. In one sentence, describe what you do.
Primarily I write, host, and produce for TV. Had a show on MTV2, a show on Spike TV, and presently I’ve got a video-on-demand show about video games on Lifeskool called Gamer Dojo. I’m also the senior writer of the ESPY Awards, fifth year on the show. Used to write the X Games. Blah blah blah.
5. If you weren’t doing this, what would you be doing?
Working at a shady moped rental spot in the Greek Islands. I still might, actually.
6. What’s the last book you read?
My Horizontal Life, by Chelsea Handler
7. What’s the last movie you saw?
Blades of Glory. So well-written – by my cousin!
8. Who are your favorite musicians?
Radiohead, Biggie, Bob Marley
9. Who should be president and why?
My mom. She got me this far; imagine what she could do for you.
10. Who should play you in the movie of your life?
My dad. He’s that good. I’ll do the nude scenes, though.
11. What do you like and hate about living in L.A.?
I like going snowboarding on Saturday and surfing on Sunday. I like having amazing friends in a city where everyone says the people suck. And I hate the people here that suck.
12. How are Chicago girls different from L.A. girls?
Chicago girls neg me [turn him down] at 4 a.m. L.A. girls neg me at 2 a.m.
13. What’s the worst pick-up line?
Spill a drink on a girl and say you’re sorry. Either a funny conversation starts, or you get to spill a drink on a pretty girl. Win-win.
14. Best pick-up line?
“Come out with us tonight. You can interview me for chicagomag.com at the club.”
15. How many times have you Googled yourself?
Party-spotting: Russell Simmons, the co-founder of Def Jam Recordings, makes a stop at Borders on Michigan Avenue Thursday night. After signing copies of Do You! 12 Laws to Access the Power in You to Achieve Happiness and Success, Simmons heads to Rednofive for an official book launch party. The event opens to the public at 10 p.m.