Eugene Mirman is perhaps best known as the voice of Gene on the Fox series Bob’s Burgers, but he’s long been a cult-favorite comic. Since 2008, the former Lexington resident has put on the annual Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival in Brooklyn, and this spring, from May 1 to 4, he’s bringing it home to Boston for the second year in a row. Kristen Schaal and John Hodgman will be among the performers, and Mirman will close the festival with a taping of StarTalk, a science and comedy podcast.
When the NCAA men’s basketball tournament tips off this month, Bay Staters may finally have a team to root for (that is, besides, ugh, Harvard). UMass hasn’t cracked the bracket since 1998, but head coach Derek Kellogg, who played for John Calipari’s Minutemen during their early-’90s glory days, has finally revived the program. Now his Minutemen are hoping to see just how far they can dance.
Newton native B.J. Novak became famous by writing for and acting in The Office. For his next act: literary fiction. The comedian (and Harvard lit grad) snagged a seven-figure, two-book deal from Knopf last year, and his debut effort, One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories, arrives February 4.
The U.S. Figure Skating Championships are coming to Boston January 5 to 12, with main events at the TD Garden. The 2013 U.S. pairs champions will be on home ice: Simon Shnapir, 26, grew up in Sudbury after moving from Russia as a tot, and Marissa Castelli, 23, lives in Allston. The duo train at the Skating Club of Boston, and, if they win, are headed to Sochi. They’re the favorites—even if they haven’t always been each other’s favorite people.
Best known as Ben’s brother, Casey Affleck has had a pretty good career in his own right, including an Oscar nomination for his supporting role in The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. Now he’s starring alongside Christian Bale in Out of the Furnace, out December 6, playing a PTSD-addled Iraq vet who mysteriously disappears. Up next are a series of Boston projects and, who knows, maybe even something on rent control in Cambridge.
During the 2004 election, Jon Stewart appeared on CNN’s Crossfire and so thoroughly eviscerated the political slugfest that the show disappeared for almost nine years. Now it’s back! The network relaunched Crossfire a few weeks ago, with Raynham native and Democratic strategist Stephanie Cutter serving as one of four hosts, alongside Van Jones, Newt Gingrich, and S. E. Cupp. Cutter made her bones in 2012 as a top Obama spinmeister, but the former Ted Kennedy aide says that in her new gig, she wants to go beyond the talking points.
A product of West Roxbury and Wayland, Taylor Schilling stars in the much-buzzed-about Netflix series Orange Is the New Black. Her character, a happily engaged New York yuppie, is suddenly sent to prison because of a mistake from her past and forced to adapt to the rough, unforgiving life of an inmate. It turns out that Schilling found her inspiration for the part back at home—well, at least for most of the scenes.
After hitting the Yankees’ Karim García with a pitch during the 2003 American League Championship Series, Pedro Martínez famously asked, “Who is Karim García?” But nobody’s ever had to ask who Pedro is. One of Boston’s most beloved athletes, he rejoined the Red Sox this season as a special assistant to general manager Ben Cherington. We caught up with him as he was about to head out on a promotion for Good Humor ice cream, handing out treats around town.
The Manchester-by-the-Sea native may have won a best-adapted-screenplay Oscar last year for The Descendants, along with cowriters Alexander Payne and Jim Rash, but some of his best memories come from his childhood summers on Nantucket. He tries to capture that nostalgic feeling in his new film, The Way, Way Back, which he cowrote, produced, and directed with Rash, his longtime creative partner. The small-budget indie flick, out July 5, was shot on the South Shore and stars Steve Carell as the adult foil to a teenager trying to survive the tedium of a family vacation at, of all places, Wareham’s Water Wizz water park.