Friday, October 23, 2009

What Do You Think?


TNT released a set of commercials to promote the NBA. In those commercials Rainn Wilson plays a taxi driver. Rainn has admitted the taxi driver is a rip off of what Donal Logue used to do in his Jimmy The Cab Driver.

Donal says that Rainn has no integrity. Actually his official Facebook comment was "Rainn Wilson officially has zero integrity."

Now, Rainn admitted he took the character from Donal so what else was he supposed to do? Is he the one who wrote the spots? I am caught in a very tough position here because I love Jimmy The Cab Driver and Donal Logue and I also love Rainn Wilson and they are both very nice. Is Donal pissed because the NBA didn't want Donal and wanted Rainn? At some point, ideas get copied and imitated and if you pay respect to the originator of the idea and come out and say that you ripped that person off that is a whole lot different than a Carlos Mencia person where he steals jokes and never admits they are stolen.

What do you think? Is Donal Logue's character not allowed for all time? Is it an homage to a great character? Below is my favorite Jimmy skit and also one of the NBA ones. (Thanks Sarah)



18 comments:

RocketQueen said...

Yeah, seems a bit like sour grapes on Donal's part.

figgy said...

I like both Donal and Rainn (what names!) Wasn't it Tony Bennett who said "if you take ideas from one person it's theft, but if you take ideas from a bunch of people it's research." I'm sure Rainn put his own spin on it.

Robyn said...

I love Donal, but I think he's over reacting and should get over it, the taxi driver character isn't the star or anything, it's about the NBA, and they players.

Beth said...

He couldn't come up with a fresh idea? I just think it's lazy. Be creative. RW is a talented guy. I don't think he has zero integrity but I can see why DL is annoyed by it.

There is way too much creative laziness in Hollywood these days. Bored now.

chopchop said...

Agree with Beth. The NBA commercial was dumb and it seemed like it was trying too hard to be like the Donal Logue commercials. Why can't Hollywood come up with original ideas anymore? Everything is either a "reboot" (just because you give it a modern name doesn't make it easier for us to swallow old, overused ideas) or a concept from a vintage TV show. How about the writers/producers actually earn those millions and come up with a funny and original concept?

Sarah said...

Thanks for finding the link w/Rainn's skit, couldn't find it this morning!

I think this is an homage of sorts to Logue's cab driver. But if he didn't say something abt. it this morning (posts were removed) I wouldn't have made the connection - I don't think it was that obvious. So Wilson's giving him credit was the honorable thing to do...therefore, he has integrity.

I've always liked Logue. Maybe he posted it before he heard he'd been given credit?

Majik said...

Anyone else think these characters have a resemblance to Bubbles from TPB?

B626 said...

team donal
petty but true

Anonymous said...

Donal is a great guy...that is a total rip off & not too funny to boot

Miss X said...

They are both cab drivers who seem a bit crazy. Sorry, Donal, but I think you are overreacting.

donallogue said...

this is donal logue- i wrote rainn had no integrity because (admittedly I am pissed off and i am in canada working and feel far away from all of it) he went on jay leno and not only didn't say that he borrowed it from me, he said there were other characters like his before and that his is different- if he came clean and said he took it from me or they asked him to do it and he felt a little uncomfortable, tried and ultimately realized it was a bit of a mistake- then of course my response was different- the denial and the spin is what is more bothersome- that an the fact we had an educational campaign and other things planned with that character- if you heard Rainn Wilson copped to taking it from me- then I would like to see where it says that. PS- If I did my hair a certain way, had a certain laugh, wore a weird suit and bow tie, had a bike and a bell and a whole world invented and called myself wee wee herman and said my guy is different cause he is from wisconsin and I made money pushing it as my own - I would hope Paul Reubens would tell me I had no integrity. I met Rainn last year at an HBO party and told him how much I admired his work- I am very supportive of actors and generally speaking regardless of what I have done- that character was closest to me- it is the thing that people seemed to really resonate with so I am protective.

gay tallywacker said...

It would have been funny if Dwight had gotten run over by the truck Rainn was swerving to avoid - espec. if Rainn had not crashed.

Antonia said...

The NBA/TNT's publicity department makes the decisions, and really, the cabdriver routine is a staple for showcasing people.

Maybe it all comes down to Rainn Wilson was available,reliable and doesn't easily come unglued.

shakey said...

I saw the Jay Leno spot. I agree it would have been the perfect opportunity for him to say he based it on Jimmy the Cab Driver. He even looked nervous when he talked about it.

I'd like to know if it was the NBA's ad team that devised these commercials and went with Rainn because he's "hot" right now, or if they came to Rainn and asked him to come up with a character (which I doubt). Either way, it would have cost nothing for Rainn to come clean.

hotchacha said...

I can understand the annoyance. I've had a number of people steal my work this year. I've had colleagues swipe my entire website design. Others steal my photographs and performance concepts and curriculum.

I really, really like Rainn, I do. But it's not cool to poach in this way.

That said, yes I do see a striking similarity with the Bubbles character from Trailer Park Boys.

Beth said...

I see the Bubbles similarity as well. But I believe Jimmy pre-dates Bubbles by a couple of years. Still, they could be brothers.

Unfortunate Couture said...

I'm late to this party. But I, for one, have never in my life heard of Jimmy the Cab Driver. I am sure I have seen dozens or hundreds of ads/skits featuring a wacky cab driver (hell, I've been IN that cab). The concept isn't particularly unique. Hell, I don't even see that much similarity between the two, beyond "wacky cab driver". Maybe it's a ripoff. Maybe it's an homage. Maybe it's just YET ANOTHER "wacky cabbie" schtick (sorry, Mr. Logue, you didn't invent it). Everyone's overreacting.

skw said...

I think Rainn Wilson is a total douche bag for not crediting Donal. The fact that he is acting like he based his character on a bunch of different characters is ridiculous. His character is so simailar to Donal's-he even makes the same facial expressions.I think Rainn thought he would get away with it because he assumed people wouldn't remember the Jimmy character-that enough time had passed since the Jimmy skits aired.I am glad people are calling Rainn out on the fact that he completely ripped-off Donal Logue.