Say what you will about Tucker’s tax problems with the Internal Revenue Service and the 42 year-old “actor, comedian and humanitarian’s” somewhat stalled movie career, from the moment he hit the stage last night it was evident that this was no run of the mill comedy club show.
“Look at me. Look at me! I am the captain now,” Tucker told the audience in a nod to Tom Hanks hit movie Captain Phillips.
Dressed immaculately – unlike 99.9 percent of the comics who’ve graced Stanford’s stage, including heavyweights like Lewis Black – Tucker appeared larger-than-life in a black dress shirt and tie, black slacks, a burgundy silk brocade sport jacket and ultra-glossy, black patent leather shoes.
To say nothing of Tucker’s posse, consisting of a burly bodyguard and yes men.
“Thank you for supporting all the Rush Hour movies but Jackie Chan can get on my nerves,” he told the sold out crowd. “Calling me collect from Hong Kong…I love working with Charlie Sheen. Charlie Sheen makes me look good. Because I’d show up late for work and Charlie Sheen wouldn’t show up at all.”
I’d forgotten how bigTucker’s eyes can be – they’re huge – with gigantic dark pupils and massive white scleras.
He talked about being single and laying down the law to women in his dating life.
“I say, ‘If you think something’s going to happen tonight, you’re wrong. I’m not that kind of celebrity.”
On disgraced foodie Paula Deen, “I feel bad for Paula Deen, don’t you feel bad for Paula Deen?” Tucker queried. “Paul Deen is rich. I think rich people can say whatever they want.”
As for the reportedly $12 million Tucker owes the IRS, “I have a tax problem,” he told the crowd. “I listened to the wrong people. That’s the last time I let Wesley Snipes help me out on my taxes.”
Action star Snipes was released from prison last April after serving three years for reportedly failing to pay around $15 million on his earnings from 1999 to 2001.
“I made a lot of money, man,” Tucker continued. “I made a lot of money. And I thought it was all mine. I forgot about the IRS.”
At one point in his career he reportedly demanded and received $20 million for the second Rush Hour movie, then negotiated a $25 million, two-movie deal with New Line Cinema, including 20 percent of the gross receipts for Rush Hour 3, making him one of the highest paid actors in Hollywood at the time.
These days Tucker says he doesn’t like to talk about how much money he makes, but word on the street is he’d like to make a fourth Rush Hour with Chan and is working on an HBO special.
As Tucker started to talk about his friend Michael Jackson he paused and did a massive double take after realizing that the zipper on his pants was down.
“Michael was a genius, man,” Tucker continued. “He started calling me Christmas. The first time he called me that I didn’t know who he was talking to.”
Stanford’s is one of four clubs Tucker is visiting in an obvious effort to resurrect his standup shtick, probably for the HBO special. He appeared far trimmer than in Silver Linings Playbook and was obviously working at it quite hard to prepare for his big comeback.
It won’t be easy at the age of 43, which he turns in August, but from the looks of things, Chris Tucker is a man on a mission. And judging from the crowd reaction to his late show last night at Stanford’s, it’s a mission he very well could succeed in.
Now if he can just talk Jackie Chan into another Rush Hour movie.
Unfortunately Chan announced two years ago that he was getting too old for action films…or at least the amazing stunts for which is famous. However it appears that Chan – and his stunt body double – are on board if they can come up with the right script.
Tucker returns to the stage at Stanford & Sons at The Legends in KCK for two shows tonight at 7:45 pm and 9:45 pm