NO ONE can accuse Comedy Central of making the safe, obvious choice.
The network has tapped Trevor Noah to replace Jon Stewart as host of the "The Daily Show," and if you have Noah idea who he is, you're not alone.
Trevor, a 31-year-old comedian from South Africa, has contributed to "The Daily Show" a handful of times during the past year, and is the son of a black South African mother and a white European father. Noah has an international presence and hosted a late-night talk show in South Africa, "Tonight With Trevor Noah."
So, expect "Daily Show" ratings to soar in Johannesburg.
Stewart offered his endorsement yesterday.
"I'm thrilled for the show and for Trevor," he said. "He's a tremendous comic and talent that we've loved working with. . . . In fact, I may rejoin as a correspondent just to be part of it."
In South Africa, the announcement made the national news. On social media, Noah's name became a trending topic, with some Twitter users saying he not only represented South Africa, but also the African continent.
Dailycaller.com, no relation to "The Daily Show," actually asked if Noah may be anti-Israel, based on one line from his stand-up act.
It probably won't be long until he's labeled a Kenyan Socialist.
Noah has appeared on Jay Leno and David Letterman, and was the subject of a documentary film by David Paul Meyer, "You Laugh But It's True," which followed his career in postapartheid South Africa.
"Trevor Noah is an enormous talent," said Michele Ganeless, Comedy Central president. "He has an insightful and unique point of view and, most importantly, is wickedly funny.
"For the next host of 'The Daily Show,' we set out to find a fresh voice who can speak to our audience with a keen take on the events of the day, and we found that in Trevor."
Nobody beats 'The Wiz'
NBC has picked the next live musical it's going to ruin, and not wanting to discriminate, it's decided to butcher "The Wiz."
E! Online reports that the show will air Dec. 3
Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, the team that brought you "Smash," "The Sound of Music" and "Peter Pan," will produce along with Cirque du Soleil. An interesting, possibly encouraging, twist is that the show will move on to Broadway for the 2016-17 season.
Kenny Leon will stage the TV version and Broadway revival. Harvey Fierstein will contribute new material to the Broadway book by William F. Brown.
"The Wiz" is an adaptation of L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz with music and lyrics by Charlie Smalls and a book from Brown.
The show opened in 1975 and won seven Tonys. Michael Jackson, Diana Ross and Lena Horne starred in the 1978 movie version.
Here's Tattle's cast: Rihanna as Dorothy; Usher as the Scarecrow; Cedric the Entertainer as the Tin Man; Kevin Hart as the Cowardly Lion; Wanda Sykes as Evillene (the bad); Diana Ross as Glinda the Good and Samuel L. Jackson as the Wizard.
* Asian actors may also see a bump in employment.
Disney told the Hollywood Reporter that it's planning a live-action remake of "Mulan."
After it gets done reworking all of its animated classics with live actors, maybe Disney will then choose to reanimate them with new technology and new voices.
We can all just live in an endless loop of "Cinderella."
* And in news about a movie exec who knows something about the art of war, the Hollywood Reporter says that Harvey Weinstein has been accused by a 22-year-old woman of groping her breast Friday at the Tribeca Film Center, in lower Manhattan, where the Weinstein Co. also has offices.
The alleged incident occurred about 6:30 p.m. The woman filed the report a few hours later.
The New York Daily News added that the woman was an Italian model who allegedly was coaxed into Weinstein's office to talk "business."
In his office, the married father of five allegedly "asked if her breasts were real before touching them," a police source said. "She asked him to stop and he put his hand up her skirt. He asked for a kiss, she responded 'No.' "
* A new audiobook recording of Sun Tzu's The Art of War will be available tomorrow with a narration by Aidan Gillen, the scheming royal adviser Littlefinger from "Game of Thrones."
"There's no way the writing staff of 'Game of Thrones' haven't read The Art of War," Gillen wrote by email.
Sometimes it's unclear if they've read Game of Thrones.
- Daily News wire services
contributed to this report.
On Twitter: @DNTattle