“Benders” Adds Guest Stars Steve Schirripa and Jim Norton Among Others 

NEW YORK, NY — July 28, 2015 — IFC’s original comedy slate is in full swing this summer and things will get even hotter (and funnier) in the fall.  On Thursday, October 1, the “slightly off” network will launch the new original series “Benders” and “Gigi Does It” (fka “Gigi’s Bucket List”) creating a full hour of brand new comedies.  “Benders,” IFC’s first ensemble series, kicks off the hour at 10 pm ET/PT, followed by “Gigi Does It” at 10:30 pm.

“Benders” follows a team of friends bonded by an irrational obsession with their men’s ice hockey team, The Chubbys.  Previously announced lead cast members include Lindsey Broad (The Office, 21 Jump Street), Chris Distefano (Girl Code, The Half Hour), Mark Gessner (Orange is the New Black, The Blacklist), Ruy Iskandar (Gotham, The Blacklist) and Andrew Schulz (Guy Code, co-creator & host of Brilliant Idiots podcast).

In “Gigi Does It” actor David Krumholtz (This Is The End, Numb3rs) is transformed into Gigi Rotblum, a 76-year-old yenta with a heart of gold.  With her razor-sharp tongue, she’s out to live life to the fullest as she spends the secret millions her dead husband left behind while accompanied by her male nurse Ricky (Ricky Mabe, Zack & Miri Make a Porno, Goon).

“As we continue to expand our comedy slate and welcome new viewers to the network, Benders and Gigi Does It are fresh, original offerings and welcome additions,” said Jennifer Caserta, IFC’s president.  “The cast of Benders coupled with David’s hilarious, yet unexpected interpretation of a fiery grandmother will make for a great hour of television that we’re excited to present to our fans.”

As IFC readies its new hour of comedy programming, the network today announced the guest cast for “Benders” which includes a group of well-known comedians and actors. Joining the series is Steve Schirripa (The Sopranos), Jim Norton (Louie, Inside Amy Schumer), Godfrey (Louie, 30 Rock), Robert Kelly (Louie, Opie & Anthony), Mark Margolis (Breaking Bad, Californication), Lenny Venito (The Neighbors, Men in Black 3), and Orange is the New Black’s Barbara Rosenblat and Joel Marsh Garland.  Additionally, comedian Jim Breuer (SNL, Half Baked) makes a cameo appearance as himself.

Character Descriptions:

 Vito Gentile (Schirripa): Mr. Gentile assumes the role of acting funeral director of O’Donnegan’s Funeral Home after Mr. O’Donnegan mysteriously disappears.  The guys enlist his help when the wake of one of Paul’s relatives coincides with the Chubbys’ playoff game.

Bryan Beale (Norton):  A terrible hockey player, Bryan is given the opportunity to play with The Chubbys just once.  He’s even worse with women, but chalks it up to his failing health and a bad breakup.

Rajon (Godfrey): A former Chubby, Rajon works at the ice rink and sometimes subs as the team’s goalie.  Unfortunately, he’s more interested in making fun of the guys with his new teammates, a group of fellow rink employees.

EMT Thurber (Kelly): When Paul and Karen smoke a bit too much weed, the EMTs are called and Thurber arrives on the scene.  He’s already familiar with this couple because their sons are in the same class, and he’s anything but amused by Paul and Karen’s marijuana mishap.

Grandpa Jerry Rosenberg (Margolis): Paul’s grandfather decides life just isn’t worth living anymore and asks Paul for his help ending it all.

Lenny (Venito): A friend of Anthony’s uncle, Lenny offers to help Paul carry out Grandpa Jerry’s (last) wish.

Helga (Rosenblat): As the proprietor of the local massage parlor that Anthony and Sebalos visit, Helga ensures that their appointments always end happily.

Brock (Garland): Paul and Karen’s rude, heavyset upstairs neighbor likes to frequent his treadmill late at night, keeping the couple awake.

Jim Breuer (as himself): Jim meets the guys at a fundraiser and takes pleasure in flirting with Karen, which drives Paul insane.

Benders is produced for IFC by Apostle.  Series creators and writers Jim Serpico and Tom Sellitti are executive producing along with their Apostle partner Denis Leary.

Gigi Does It is produced for IFC by Grandma’s House Entertainment, executive produced by Krumholtz and Tim Gibbons (Curb Your Enthusiasm, Real Husbands of Hollywood), along with Grandma’s House Entertainment’s Ben Newmark and Dan Newmark, Ricky Mabe and Zach Golden; Adam Bold and Mike Lopez of Grandma’s House Entertainment serve as producers.  Krumholtz is transformed into Gigi by Alterian Inc. makeup effects guru Tony Gardner (Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa, Zombieland).

About IFC

IFC is the home of offbeat, unexpected comedies.  Series like Portlandia, Maron and Comedy Bang! Bang! air alongside fan-favorite movies and comedic cult TV shows.  Owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc., along with sister channels AMC, BBC America, SundanceTV and WE tv, IFC is available to 72 million U.S. homes and across multiple platforms.  IFC:  Always On Slightly Off

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