News Column

Chelsea's Handler: Chuy Bravo

Sept. 27, 2012

Diana Nollen

Chuy Bravo, Chelsea Handler's sidekick on E! TV's "Chelsea Lately" and "After Lately," is coming to Penguins Comedy Club in downtown Cedar Rapids for two shows on October 3.

Much like his celebrated television role, he'll be at the microphone, hosting and slinging a few one-liners with standup comedians Dov Davidoff and Christina Pazsitsky.

The youngest of seven brothers and sisters, he was born Jesus Melgoza in Michoacan, Mexico, and came to the United States with his family at age 15.

He launched his acting career in L.A., landing roles in "Austin Powers 3: Goldmember," "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End" and "The Rundown." He also did a few commercials before getting his "big break" with "Chelsea Lately."

The details

-- Comedians of Chelsea Lately

-- October 3, 2012

-- 7:00 and 9:00 p.m. at Penguins Comedy Club

-- Tickets: $22.50 advance, $25 at the door

-- Ages 21 and over

-- Standup comedy by Dov Davidoff and Christina Pazsitsky; meet-and-greet afterward with Chuy

We caught up with Chuy last week for an email interview. He's mum on his age, but offered these personal glimpses: "I'm proud to say that I've been clean and sober for 15 years. Single and ready to mingle!" Here's what else he had to say:

Q: Who is Chuy Bravo?

A: That's me, who I am. Just a little guy living in the big city.

Q: How does he differ from Jesus Melgoza?

A: There is no difference. It's the same person except Jesus doesn't have a great job and Chuy does.

Q: How did you hook up with Chelsea Handler?

A: Like everything, you meet people. Then they introduce you to their friends. A friend introduced me to her, she liked me and we started working together.

Q: We all know you're her handler and sidekick -- what does that entail?

A: Assistant is the name they gave me for the show. I'm more her sidekick, which pretty much means she gets to mess with me, and that's the twist on the show and what makes us different. I think people enjoy our chemistry and believe me, she needs me more than you think.

Q: How did your life and work experience prepare you for that role?

A: Like everyone, I'm a person with very good and bad experiences. Both prepared me for this show. The relationship that I have with Chelsea, and have had for a long time, creates great chemistry for the show.

Q: What's the best aspect of your job? Any downsides?

A: Everything is good, there is no bad side. I'm always learning new things from everybody on the show, and I appreciate them for that. I am incredibly fortunate.

Q: What causes do you champion and how has the "Chelsea" celebrity allowed you to bring attention to them?

A: I like to support a lot of charity events that I get invited to. I am well aware what the show has done for me, and I am a big fan of paying it forward. I'm a sucker for anything that involves kids and I also support people and organizations that work with addiction and recovery. I get invited to events because of who I am and that gives me the opportunity to support these causes.

Q: What is your role with "Comedians of Chelsea Lately," the event coming to Penguins Comedy Club in Cedar Rapids?

A: I'm hosting the show and I obviously bring the Magic Mike element. I'm the beefcake.

Q: Is it enough to be the host and do intros and one-liners, or do you long to be a stand-up comedian with a 30-minute routine?

A: I don't think I have enough material for a 30-minute routine. I'm more than OK with hosting and doing intros and one-liners. The comedians on the show are great and I let them do what they do best.



Source: (c)2012 The Gazette (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) Distributed by MCT Information Services