Winking at Aziz at the MTV Movie Awards

Hey Aziz Ansari! I’m gonna be one of those infamous seat fillers at this year’s MTV Movie Awards 2010 on June 6th! You better be winking at a brown face you see in the audience, because I’ll be winking back…!

First of all, how did Aziz Ansari get a gig like hosting the 19th Annual MTV Movie Awards? I mean we’ve written about his rise in fame here, and here, and here… but damn! A national awards show? Is it possible that he could just be the first Desi to host a national televised award show? Moving up. Second, how precious are those baby pictures? (h/t Ami)

Stephen Friedman, the general manager of MTV, said Mr. Ansari’s pop-cultural tastes made him an ideal embodiment of the millennial-generation viewers whom the channel wants to reach.

“He’s playing with music, our sweet spot, but doing it in a way that creates a visceral connection with everyone in our audience,” Mr. Friedman said. “This guy gets us in a much more immediate way than other comedians. He’s grown up with the audience.”

What Mr. Ansari won’t do is exploit his minority status for laughs, or make it the focus of his comedy. You won’t hear him opining about his parents’ background as Tamil Muslims from India, and he said he’s tired of people’s assumptions that he encountered rampant racism growing up in the South. [nyt] Somehow, in all my blogging about Aziz, I totally missed the Tamil Muslim thing.

Finally, a seat filler? You mean look pretty and keep some famous person’s seat warm while they go use the bathroom in the hopes that I rub elbows with some other famous people? Heck yeah. This is as Southern Californian as trying out for Jeopardy in Culver City, hiking to the Hollywood sign, or sticking your feet ankle deep in a Grunion Run. I’ve never been a seat filler before but when this opportunity came up, I just had to take it. Though I’ve been told I can’t take pictures or even bring in my phone, I need to find a way to tweet from inside the awards ceremony. Count on me to try and figure out how to smuggle an electronic device past security. That was a joke, officer.

Aside from Aziz, I’m not sure what other Desis I need to keep an eye out for… Mindy Kaling, M.I.A., or Jay Sean? Anyone from the mutinous horde making an appearance? Have you been a seat filler before and have some advice? And most important girls, what do I wear?

This entry was posted in Events, Film, Video by Taz. Bookmark the permalink.

About Taz

Taz is an activist, organizer and writer based in California. She is the founder of South Asian American Voting Youth (SAAVY), curates MutinousMindState.tumblr.com and blogs at TazzyStar.blogspot.com. Follow her at twitter.com/tazzystar

34 thoughts on “Winking at Aziz at the MTV Movie Awards

  1. I love Aziz Ansari!!! He the man!!!!

    I see him and wish I was 25 years younger….

  2. Seriously, I love his humor and wit. And that he has the courage to not change his name to get famous or get ahead, especially in these times. Love the guy.

  3. Ha Ha Ha…that was sweet. The baby pictures of Aziz in the first video look nothing like the guy he would grow up to be, though. Hope you have a good time at the awards taz. My advice for dress is to wear a sari.

    Also, freeze frame the ad with Kristen Bell at 00:35, when Aziz raises his eybrow…he looks exactly like Megatron in the episode Heavy Metal War at 03:49 (see on youtube). What’s weird in that episode, though, is that just before that moment, Starscream is painted black like Skywarp and Megatron is missing his fusion cannon. The continuity is also out of whack, because later episodes in the series depict the Constructicons building Megatron, not the other way around. Still a cool episode though.

    Will post my views on the awards ceremony next week. Have a great weekend, guys!

    Good luck to Az=iz

  4. He is a Tamil-speaking Muslims. Not Tamil Muslims. Didn’t we learn anything from Sri Lanka?

  5. he said he’s tired of people’s assumptions that he encountered rampant racism growing up in the South.

    Is he highlighting Northern racism (justly so) or is he a Dinesh D’Souza fan?

  6. 5 · Anonymous on June 4, 2010 10:30 PM · Direct link He is a Tamil-speaking Muslims. Not Tamil Muslims. Didn’t we learn anything from Sri Lanka?

    Eh…Is Anglais your second or third language? What are you talking about “Tamil-speaking Muslim” != “Tamil Muslims”? Give me an example of each if they are not the same.

    On another note, Aziz Ansari should convert to Catholicism and change his name to Charles Percival Whittington, Sr. Also, he needs more of a folksy drawl. He would get so much further ahead in life.

  7. Hey guys:

    Found that link to Heavy Metal War I mentioned earlier.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-jtsdUtc_k

    Freeze frame the youtube link above at 3:49 and then freeze frame the video above with Aziz and Kristen Bell. Dosen’t Aziz’s expression look just like the Megatron character?

    Weird!?!?!!

  8. Freeze frame the youtube link above at 3:49 and then freeze frame the video above with Aziz and Kristen Bell. Dosen’t Aziz’s expression look just like the Megatron character? Weird!?!?!!

    What’s weird is that I ACTUALLY DID THAT. Side by side, I still don’t think Aziz has a transformer look. But what you are saying is that Aziz’s “let’s get sexi” look is robotic looking. Interesting.

  9. MTV awards shows have suffered from massive neglect from corporate who are on a cost cutting mission . But VMAs seemed to have gotten more money this year compared to the idiotic warehouse VMAs from a prior year. So maybe there is hope for the movie awards show and it won’t be some throwaway effort on production. Hiring Aziz is a good start.

  10. Taz,

    He is not a Tamil Muslim. He’s a Muslim. For Tamils, anti-Muslim bigotry is deeply ingrained within them.That’s why you never hear Tamils in TN spoke against Tamils persecution of Muslims in Sri Lanka. If he still considers himself as a Tamil, maybe he should try buying a house in Iyer’s ghettoes in Chennai and let see how the Iyers would react to a name like Aziz Ansari. Or he should listen to anti-Muslim venom spewed by Tamil policemen against Muslims in TN: http://www.sabrang.com/cc/comold/feb98/report.htm “A 12-member team sent by the PUCL to Kovai (formerly Coimbatore) to investigate into the communal disturbances two months ago, found shocking instances of anti-Muslim collusion between sections of the local police and Hindu communal bodies “

    Whenever a Muslim becomes successful, he or she is given the hyphenated identity unheard-of in Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu. Let’s respect his Muslim identity.

  11. Anonymous, Tamil Nadu is not Sri Lanka. Although it is true that Muslims face discrimination in both places, you need to back up your assertion that Muslims in Tamil Nadu don’t identify as Tamil. If it’s just that you don’t want them to, come out and say it so we can talk about that.

  12. Why don’t we let Aziz speak for himself.

    In an earlier version of this article, Michael Schur, the co-creator of “Parks and Recreation,” partly described Mr.Ansari as a Muslim. Mr. Ansari describes himself as an atheist. nyt
  13. . For Tamils, anti-Muslim bigotry is deeply ingrained within them.That’s why you never hear Tamils in TN spoke against Tamils persecution of Muslims in Sri Lanka.

    you have no idea what you are talking about. there is no cultural anti-muslim bigotry among tamils in tn.

  14. For Tamils, anti-Muslim bigotry is deeply ingrained within them.That’s why you never hear Tamils in TN spoke against Tamils persecution of Muslims in Sri Lanka.

    I know. Abdul Kalam is deeply hated Tamilnadu.

  15. you have no idea what you are talking about. there is no cultural anti-muslim bigotry among tamils in tn.

    Seriously?

  16. Make way for the Dravidian! There are a bunch of morons in this discussion thread always trying to bring a religious angle into everything.Have any of you even lived in Tamil Nadu? Why try and dig up some isolated issues. Try and visit a bar next to college campus in TN and I can guarantee that you will see a Hindu, Christian & Muslim sitting around a table eating Chicken 65 and drinking alcohol. TN is a secular state and no one cares what religion you are…you are a brother as long as you speak Tamil and respect Thalaivar Rajnikanth :) Cheers!

  17. Is he highlighting Northern racism (justly so) or is he a Dinesh D’Souza fan?

    When Aziz gets annoyed about harping on Southern racism, I doubt that he means that it doesn’t exist…he probably just means that it wasn’t the dominant narrative of his childhood. I suspect that is the case for many of us who grew up in “fly over” country, we encountered friendship more often than hatred.

    I am pretty sure the comments above about Abdul Kalam’s popularity in TN are meant in jest, that man is a god locally and viewed as an exemplar of ethics, brains, spirituality and what it means to be a modern Indian.

  18. you are a brother as long as you speak Tamil and respect Thalaivar Rajnikanth :) Cheers!

    Amen to that. Interestingly I think the guy who plays Ron Swanson in “Parks and Recreation” scalped Rajnikanth….we should relax the membership requirements to include non-Tamil speakers with a Tamil hair-do & stache

  19. Why do you idiots always have to bring religion into every topic?

    jeez

    No wonder india is a mess

  20. Granted I’m not a desi, but I like this blog, and I just wanted to say I think Aziz Ansari is one hot funny guy. I may actually watch the MTV Movie Awards this year.

  21. 17 · agreer on June 5, 2010 4:19 PM · Direct link For Tamils, anti-Muslim bigotry is deeply ingrained within them.That’s why you never hear Tamils in TN spoke against Tamils persecution of Muslims in Sri Lanka. I know. Abdul Kalam is deeply hated Tamilnadu.

    Also, AR Rahman is deeply hated in Tamil Nadu. He was a glutton for hatred, so that’s why he converted from Hinduism to Islam. In Greater Tamil Nadu, which included Malabar, Islam was first practiced DURING THE LIFE OF MOHAMMAD, HIMSELF. North India has far more anti-Islamic fervor than does South India, in general.

    What do you believe is a great place for Indian Muslims to live, if you feel this strongly against Tamil Nadu? Bengal? Punjab? Kerala?

    11 · Anonymous on June 5, 2010 12:43 PM · Direct link Taz, He is not a Tamil Muslim. He’s a Muslim. For Tamils, anti-Muslim bigotry is deeply ingrained within them.That’s why you never hear Tamils in TN spoke against Tamils persecution of Muslims in Sri Lanka. If he still considers himself as a Tamil, maybe he should try buying a house in Iyer’s ghettoes in Chennai and let see how the Iyers would react to a name like Aziz Ansari.

    Buying a home in the Iyer ghettos is not how a Tamil asserts their Tamil identity. 99% of Tamils are not Iyers, anyways. Aziz actually was speaking in Tamil as part of his comedy routine, and he was trying to woo fellow Tamilian (but not an Indian Tamil, but a SL Tamil) MIA. Last I heard, she didn’t have Aziz’s baby.

    Also, the Muslims of TN are not monolithic. Many – about 10 – are Urdu speakers, with immediate ancestry from the North. They migrated relatively recently from places like Kaach, Gujarat.

    Or he should listen to anti-Muslim venom spewed by Tamil policemen against Muslims in TN: http://www.sabrang.com/cc/comold/feb98/report.htm “A 12-member team sent by the PUCL to Kovai (formerly Coimbatore) to investigate into the communal disturbances two months ago, found shocking instances of anti-Muslim collusion between sections of the local police and Hindu communal bodies ” Whenever a Muslim becomes successful, he or she is given the hyphenated identity unheard-of in Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu. Let’s respect his Muslim identity.

    There is anti-Muslim sentiment everywhere, unfortunately. So it’s not fair to single out Coimbatore. There are also anti-Indian (independent of caste/ethnic affiliation/religion) in Dubai and other oil-rich regions.

    I don’t give a damn about Aziz’s religion, his mother tongue, his father’s tongue, or whether or not he eats rasam and rice with his hands. All I know is that he’s funny as kakoose. To be fair,

  22. Aziz ain’t that funny. Mindy Kaling ain’t funny either. Jay Chandrasekhar is the funniest Tamil person in America.

    MIA might be (unintentionally) funnier.

  23. I thought Aziz was funny enough. Funnier than Brand’s hosting of trhe VMAs which were disastrous, especially the first time. (FWIW, I did like Brand in Sarah Marhsall and he does hace his moments during his regular standup).

    ANd as much as I enjoy Russell Peters, Aziz was himself without having to inject any token Indian related jokes( i saw clips of Peters hosting the Genie awards or some other Canadian awards show. Yet he wasn’t hiding who he was.

    I like Kaling. she brings a different sense of humor to the table. Same with Jay Chandrasekhar.

  24. Jay Chandrasekhar is the funniest Tamil person in America.

    I love me some Jay! But I’m still sweet on Aziz.

    Interestingly I think the guy who plays Ron Swanson in “Parks and Recreation” scalped Rajnikanth….we should relax the membership requirements to include non-Tamil speakers with a Tamil hair-do & stache

    The devil’s right, Ron Swanson is the pasty man’s Rajnikanth (and Neel Shah is the poor man’s Jay Chandrasekhar.) Keep tryin’ Neel.

  25. Aziz ain’t that funny. Mindy Kaling ain’t funny either. Jay Chandrasekhar is the funniest Tamil person in America.

    I thought he was Canadian?

  26. Highlight of the evening: Aziz, in his RKelly mode, “FUCK YOUUUU, BEEEEEPEEEEEEE”

    On a related note, how funny was Aziz’s back and forth banter with Seth Rogan in Observe and Report where they both mouth Fuck Yous to each other.

  27. I absolutely adore Aziz a lot,he is such an intelligent guy and I love the way he speaks..!!Hopefully,I could meet him in person someday..hahahah..He looks so cute on his baby picture..!