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Vic Dibitetto finally gets his shot

By Gary Wien


This article was originally designed to be read in the September 2014 issue of New Jersey Stage magazine. To read it in its original format, click here

Eight months ago, comedian Vic Dibitetto uploaded "Who's gonna give me my shot?!" on YouTube. In the video, Dibitetto, who lives in Central Jersey, makes a plea for somebody to give him a shot at a television role, rattling off a list of comedians he started out with that are world famous today. "If I suck, I suck," he says, "just give me my shot."

One of the comedians called out in the video was Kevin James, who just happens to be one of the 40,000 subscribers to Vic's videos and he took the plea to heart. He offered Vic a role in Mall Cop 2, the sequel to the blockbuster film from 2009, which will be released next year. So after thirty years of working two jobs (he's been a school bus driver for the past decade), Vic finally gets his shot.

"It was the greatest experience of my life," Vic said, describing the movie shoot in Las Vegas. "I was there for 6 weeks. He gave me a nice part, I'm in the whole movie. It was surreal, I'm doing lines with Paul Blart and I'm pinching myself in my pocket... I hope there's more to come because if you notice in all of his movies, he's got the same guys in there.

"He told me I nailed every scene," Vic continued. "He says you busted your ass for thirty years, you belong here. Kevin's a great guy. I mean, we weren't buddies, but we started out and worked the circuit together... He was watching my videos and I truly believe it's not who you know, it's who knows you."

Over 12 million people know Vic thanks to YouTube. That's the number of people who viewed his "Bread & Milk" vignette, which was his first video to go viral. He's since had a video with over 600,000 views (Im Not Drivin To FL!!) and another that's approaching 2.5 million views (Justin Bieber). Vic says he had no idea that "Bread & Milk" was going to break him nationally. In fact, he thought it was rather stupid and nearly deleted it.

"One day I'm in the car in the city and the phone rings," recalls Vic. "It's my niece from Florida. She says Uncle Vic, you're on Reddit. I'm like what the hell is Reddit? I'm a 52-year old guy, she's 20, she knows all this stuff. She's like your Bread & Milk video is going viral! Over the weekend I had a couple of million views and I couldn't believe it. I have vignettes that I thought were much funnier, but, no pun intended, it was literally the perfect storm.

"From my door to the car, a total of 30 seconds which got me more recognition than 30 years of stand-up... it's amazing."

While most comedians fill YouTube with videos of their stand-up act, Vic has basically created his own genre of these quick little vignettes. He puts out several each week, sometimes several in a single day. In each video he rants about whatever comes into his mind. It could be Justin Bieber getting a DWI or yesterday's Knicks game or the Ebola scare.He doesn't script them out, he just wings it. The videos help him relieve stress, while building his brand as a regular guy. He says he rants about what people are thinking.

Which brings us to The Shed.

Vic purchased a shed from Sam's Club and instantly a new series was born - a show about a guy and his shed. "It's a simple man cave and every guy relates to this," said Vic. "So, every wife relates to the guy who has it. I hit home with a lot of people because the material is so relatable."

Having a regular job in addition to comedy helped Vic stay relatable throughout his career. For the past decade he's driven a school bus full of special-education children, most developmentally challenged, all over Staten Island. He says having the day job also keeps one humble.

"All of your great TV characters are blue-collar, north east characters," he explains. "Guys like Ralph Kramden and Archie Bunker. I'm like the common man, like Rodney Dangerfield was. Rodney didn't make his first movie until he was 58, so he's my inspiration."

With a number of projects in the works, including the release of Mall Cop 2 and starring in "Don't Know Jack", a new series on Hulu, it looks like his days behind the wheel are over. This will be the first time he's ever been able to do comedy full-time. "Could you imagine me doing comedy full-time? 2015 is going to be my year!"
In "Don't Know Jack", Vic plays a retired cop in his mid-fifties who is living with a young, smart-aleck guy in his thirties. The show, which somewhat plays off of The Odd Couple theme, takes place in North Jersey and furthers his identity as a regular guy, the every man, or, as Vic puts it, the working class zeroes.

As excited as he is about landing acting roles like this, stand-up remains his first love. When asked if he could only do one: acting or stand-up, he replies, "Oh boy... that's like asking me who do I like better: Pacino or De Niro? I guess I'd say stand-up.

"When you're on stage you're your own director, producer, and choreographer," he explains. "When you make a movie it's ‘Alright, cut! Let's try it again.' In stand-up, you're in the belly of the beast. People come to see me because I say what they're thinking. I'm high energy. I scream, I spit, and my vein is popping. I'm the regular guy."

Vic performed at Uncle Vinnie's Comedy Club in Point Pleasant in September and is coming back at the beginning of the new year. For him, the vibe of the small Jersey Shore club is perfect for his act.

"I like Uncle Vinnie's, it's very intimate," he says. "It reminds me of Pips where I started out in Brooklyn. That was like the boot camp of comedy. At Uncle Vinnie's, the crowd is right there. When you do a casino, you're on a big stage, the lights are in your eyes, and you don't even see the audience. You actually have to wait for the waves of laughter to stop before you do your next bit.

But at a place like Uncle Vinnie's, you actually see the hecklers. They're right there. They're covering their drinks because I'm spitting - that's how close they are!"

Eight months ago, he asked for a shot. Now that he's got it, he's running with it. The only question is what will he rant about if 2015 really is his year?



For more by this author, click here






Patton Oswalt To Perform At Beacon Theatre
(NEW YORK, NY) --  Patton Oswalt will take the Beacon Theatre stage on Sunday, March 3, 2019 at 7:30pm. A comedian, actor and writer, Patton Oswalt continues to find success in all areas of entertainment. From his award-winning comedy specials to his many memorable film roles and guest appearances on his favorite TV shows, Oswalt continues to choose work that inspires him and entertains audiences.
Craig Ferguson To Bring His Hobo Fabulous Tour To Mayo Performing Arts Center
(MORRISTOWN, NJ) -- Craig Ferguson's Hobo Fabulous Tour comes to Mayo Performing Arts Center on Tuesday, December 4 at 7:30pm. The show, which will be 100% new material, will never be recorded for any form of broadcast or streaming outlet given Mr. Ferguson's new (ironically) Luddite mistrust of digital technology. Tickets range from $49-$79.
NJPAC Presents Candice Guardino: Italian Bred
(NEWARK, NJ) -- New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) Presents Candice Guardino: Italian Bred on Saturday January 26 at 2:00pm and 7:00pm. Created, written by and starring Candice Guardino, Italian Bred is based on true-life events seen through the eyes of a little girl.
SOPAC Presents Todd Barry
(SOUTH ORANGE, NJ) -- Comedian Todd Barry has been performing for decades, bringing his dry humor and sharp wit to stages all over the world. Now, audiences at South Orange Performing Arts Center will get a taste of his special brand of razor-edge comedy on November 17 at 8:00pm.
Kevin Hart To Perform At Atlantic City's Hard Rock Hotel In Casino
(ATLANTIC CITY, NJ) -- Comedic Rock Star, Kevin Hart is bringing his Irresponsible Tour to Hard Rock Live at Etess Arena in the new Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City on Friday, December 28 at 8:00pm. Tickets range from from $100 to $350.


A Look At 2 Guys From Jersey
In issue 50, New Jersey Stage gave readers the opportunity to learn more about the writers who contribute to the magazine and the daily site. We’d like to give you the opportunity to learn more about the two shows that are featured in our magazine each month.  One is a podcast called 2 Guys From Jersey that runs a new episode every Wednesday. It involves Dr. D, Rocky, and Erin (a recent addition to the team) trying to settle trivial bar arguments that have plagued mankind for centuries.
"Legal Immigrant" Alan Cumming Brings His Cabaret To State Theatre New Jersey
It was the fall of 2008. Barack Obama had just been elected president. And Scottish-born actor Alan Cumming was sworn in as a citizen of the United States.
“Hysterical!” Gallagher LIVE! at The Strand Lakewood
Gallagher is joking with patrons in the lobby of Lakewood, NJ’s historic Strand Theater this Thursday, May 24, 2018 evening. In his audacious style, he’s grabbing cameras out of the hands of patrons who want to take great selfies with him, while also taking the time to sign T-shirts for stand-up comedy fans waiting for him at the merch table.
So You Want To Be A Comedian?
“I feel I have the kind of life where people think I’m making things up all of the time, but weirdness is kind of attracted to me,” said Jess Alaimo, a comedian from Monmouth County.  “So, I just go with whatever happens to me.”
The United States of Russia
Rutgers alum, Ben Rosenfeld released his third comedy album in January.  Entitled, The United States of Russia, the album was released by Comedy Dynamics and continues the Russia born, American raised comedian’s style of mixing tales of his immigrant parents and outsider childhood with topics ranging from millennials, terrorism, politics, and adjusting to life as a newlywed.  We caught up with Ben to talk about the album.






Event calendar
Monday, Nov 12, 2018


MUSIC

DAVID SANCIOUS & WILL CALHOUN @ The Saint, Asbury Park - 7:00pm

WHEN BROADWAY GOES DARK, VAN DYK GOES LIVE @ Bergen Performing Arts Center (bergenPAC), Englewood - 7:00pm

Bickford Benefit All-Stars @ Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum, Morristown - 7:30pm

In Dreams: Roy Orbison in Concert – The Hologram Tour @ Mayo Performing Arts Center (MPAC), Morristown - 7:30pm

MUDDFEST 2019 @ Mainstage @ Union County Performing Arts Center (UCPAC), Rahway - 7:00pm


THEATRE

Elf The Musical @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 7:30pm

Auditions: Cinderella or the Story of Bigfoot @ Studio Playhouse Upper Montclair, Upper Montclair - 6:30pm







FILM

Free Solo @ The Newton Theatre, Newton - 7:00pm


LITERATURE


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