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Kevin James Sets Netflix Stand-Up Special for 2018

Variety logo Variety 3/20/2017 Joe Otterson
© Provided by Variety

Kevin James will star in his own new Netflix stand-up special, Variety has learned.

This will mark the first time James has starred in a stand-up special since 2001’s “Sweat the Small Stuff.” He is currently scheduled to tape the special later this year, with a release eyed for 2018. Netflix previously distributed James’ film “True Memoirs of an International Assassin,” and he will also appear in the Adam Sandler Netflix film “Sandy Wexler,” which debuts in April.

James was discovered at the Montreal Comedy Fest in 1996, which led to the creation of his long-running CBS sitcom “King of Queens.” In addition to a film career that saw him star in successful comedies like the “Paul Blart: Mall Cop” franchise and “Grown Ups,” he recently returned to CBS with the sitcom “Kevin Can Wait,” which he also executive produces.

This is the latest high-profile comedy acquisition for Netflix. The streaming giant will release two never-before-seen Dave Chappelle comedy shows on Tuesday of this week, the first two of three specials Chappelle will release on the service. Netflix also recently released Amy Schumer’s “The Leather Special.”

While the number of stand-up specials debuting on the service has been steadily increasing since about 2014, Netflix locked up Chris Rock’s next two specials for a reported $40 million, snagged a special from Jim Gaffigan, and acquired the rights to past and future seasons of Jerry Seinfeld’s “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” series in addition to signing the comedy legend to a production deal that includes two new comedy specials. Louis C.K, Chris D’elia, and Tracy Morgan will also release new specials exclusively on Netflix.

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