Steve Rannazzisi is not Kevin MacArthur from FX's The League. He's certainly not the complete opposite, but he's definitely not the character he portrays on television's top fantasy football-themed comedy series.
"I'm not that different from Kevin, but some of the fans of The League have trouble differentiating," Rannazzisi says. "They don't always realize that's not me. They'll call me 'Brian' while I'm on stage or yell out 'Shiva.'"
Of course, it's understandable that some of the show's diehard fans would see Rannazzisi and immediately think of the program's jokes revolving around one of their favorite characters, but asking him to show off his "beautiful penis" might be a tad bit over the line.
Other than those who are disappointed that he's not exactly like the football-loving Chicagoan he portrays on television, Rannazzisi believes that his observational and sarcastic comedy will appeal to a wide range of people in the audience.
"As long as you have a sense of humor, I think you'll enjoy yourself," Rannazzisi says. "We'll have a good time, I promise."
After all, audience enjoyment has always been a major factor in his desire to do stand-up comedy.
Rannazzisi began writing jokes when he was in high school before majoring in theater and film during college. The 36-year-old New Yorker had always been interested in stand-up, but never attempted a career in comedy until he moved to Los Angeles in the early 2000s.
"I love just to be able to perform every night and make people laugh with things that I thought of in the car or on the subway," Rannazzisi says. "Comedy has taken me around the world. I get to go to cities that I'd never thought I'd go to, just to make people laugh."
Rannazzisi, who also opened up for comedians like Dave Chappelle and Flight of the Conchords in front of 20,000 people at the Oddball Festival in 2013, says that the key to balancing his busy stand-up, television, and movie schedule is by blocking it off in chunks, but finding the right balance for his family and personal life provides an extra challenge.
"I break it down. I'll shoot The League for a couple of months, then I'll write for a couple of months, then I'll do stand-up for a couple of months," Rannazzisi says. "Now that I have a family, I have a lot less time to hang out with buddies, but it's great. I get a lot of material from having kids, but I don't want to get stuck in jokes about having a family."
When he's not acting, writing, or doing stand-up, Rannazzisi is a big sports fan. But unlike his character on The League, Rannazzisi is a firm supporter of New York's teams and an avid golfer.
Regardless of if you've seen any of Rannazzisi's shows, movies, or standup performances before, the comedian guarantees that his sets at Stand Up Live will be material you haven't seen.
"The hour that I'm working on now will be coming out in April or May," Rannazzisi says. "So what you see in Phoenix will be all new."
Rannazzisi will be at Stand Up Live in Phoenix from February 26 until February 28. Tickets are available at StandUpLive.com and cost $20. There's also a two-drink minimum.
Editor's note: This post has been updated from its original version to correct the spelling of Kevin MacArthur's name.