790 Mr. Media talks to Outsourced’s groom-to-be, Rizwan Manji! PODCAST INTERVIEW

Today’s Guest: Actor Rizwan Manji, star of the NBC sitcom “Outsourced”

Mr. Media is recorded live before a studio audience of staff writers for Martha Stewart Weddings, who steal all their best ideas from me… in the new new media capitol of the world… St. Petersburg, Florida!

Rizwan Manji, Outsourced, actor, Mr. Media interview

Actors Rizwan Manji (l) and Sacha Dhawan, stars of the NBC sitcom Outsourced

A wedding seems the appropriate analogy to finish out the first season of the NBC sitcom “Outsourced.”

The show, about a white bread American exiled to run a Mombai, India call center, seemed more out of this world to TV critics and many viewers when it debuted in September 2010 than even Star Trek’s blue-skinned, antennaed Andorians.

“Outsourced” took a critical drubbing before most Americans even knew it was on the air.

But a funny thing happened on the way to the Mid American Novelties’ annual shareholders meeting: NBC renewed “Outsourced” for a full season. Somebody, somewhere believed in the show.

Rizwan Manji, Noureen DeWulf, Outsourced, actors, Mr. Media Interview

Actors Rizwan Manji (l) and Noureen DeWulf, stars of the NBC sitcom Outsourced

Outsourced: The Complete Series

Order ‘Outsourced: The Complete Series,’ available right now at a great price by clicking on the book cover above!

And I think you can even make a case that putting it at the end of the network’s three-hour Thursday comedy block was a loving, protective move. Slotted at 10:30 p.m. took the pressure off, giving audiences a chance to discover it on their own terms at a time of night when expectations were low.

I would also argue that both moves took the pressure off the writing staff, who shaped a lump of coal into a shimmering diamond. Characters developed and blossomed. Storylines – such as assistant manager Rajiv’s efforts to woo his beloved and her stony, disapproving father — were given gentle showcases and, as they say, hilarity ensued.

We learned that Rajiv – played by Rizwan Manji – had a heart. And that despite all his efforts to be disdained by his employees, they loved him nonetheless.

RIZWAN MANJI audio excerpt: “(‘Outsourced’) is such a different kind of TV than we’ve ever seen… These characters are so endearing and lovable, you’re just rooting for them to succeed.”

So this marriage, unspooling in a two-part episode starting May 5 and concluding on May 12, represents not just the coming together of Rajiv & Vimi. It also marks the union of an Indian cast of sitcom characters and an American TV audience.

Just this morning I read in Variety that the show has won over the National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications as well as South Asians in Media, Marketing and Entertainment, both of which are actively lobbying NBC to give “Outsourced” a second season. That’s important because the network might respond if it sees a chance to market to a welcoming, niche audience it hasn’t programmed to in the past.

Rizwan Manji FacebookTwitterRizwan Manji’s first appearance on Mr. MediaOrder Outsourced: The Complete Series from Amazon.com

More Mr. Media Interviews with the cast of NBC’s Outsourced: Parvesh CheenaDiedrich BaderSacha DhawanBen Rappaport

Mr. Media video interview with actress Noureen DeWulf before Outsourced

 


Kicking Through the Ashes by Ritch Shydner, Mr. Media Interviews

Kicking Through the Ashes: My Life As A Stand-up in the 1980s Comedy Boom by Ritch Shydner. Order your copy today by clicking on the book cover above!


 

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About Mr. Media® Interviews-Bob Andelman

Bob Andelman is the host and producer of Mr. Media® Interviews. He is also the author or co-author of 15 books, including The Wawa Way with Howard Stoeckel, Building Atlanta with Herman J. Russell, Fans Not Customers with Vernon W. Hill, founder of Commerce Bank and Metro Bank UK, Mind Over Business with Ken Baum, The Consulate with Thomas R. Stutler, The Profiler with Pat Brown, Built From Scratch with the founders of The Home Depot, The Profit Zone with Adrian Slywotzky, Mean Business with Albert J. Dunlap, and Will Eisner: A Spirited Life. Click here to see Bob Andelman's Amazon Central author page. He is a member in good standing of the American Society of Journalists and Authors (member page).