Boston Comedy Festival: ‘Sweeney Killing Sweeney’ provides one punchy kickoff


This year’s Boston Comedy Festival has a stellar slate of events planned for this week and weekend, and to ensure that it started with a real banger of a night, local legend Steve Sweeney pulled out all the stops Tuesday (September 11), coming away with one killer kick-off.

Piling into The Somerville Theatre for the premiere of Sweeney Killing Sweeney, a fictitious glimpse into the psyche of “Boston’s Character King,” fans were delighted to not only a full-length feature film featuring many local landmarks to cheer for (let’s hear it for Kowloon!), but they were graced with the presence of some of Boston’s most cherished names, both inside and out of comedy.

Joining Sweeney for the late-summer soiree was a dais of epic proportions. From Tony V and Lenny Clarke, to Nick Dipaolo, Jonathan Katz and Frank Santorelli, the comedy juju was nearing an all-time high at the Davis Square venue. That was all before Bruins legend Rick Middleton and Aerosmith bassist Tom Hamilton showed up to show their love for Sweeney, as well, amidst an unrelenting flow of fans and friends of the legendary jokester prior to the event.


Following a Q&A panel with the cast (minus fellow comedy legend Steven Wright, who also appeared in the film) after the film, which featured many laughs as well as a number of mentions of notoriously rampant cocaine use in the ’80s, Sweeney made his way outside to hold court for a bit longer before closing the curtain on a night he won’t soon forget.

“[The reception] was really warm, and amazing. I love the people I worked with, and I loved the audience. It was just such a wonderful thing,” Sweeney told Vanyaland following the red carpet affair. “There’s also a sense of relief too now, because it took a lot of work. But I like the movie. It came out good, and it’s different.”

It seemed to be as much of a reunion of Sweeney and his comedy cohorts as it was a celebration of the hard work that went into putting the film together, and Sweeney took every opportunity to bask in the moment, and to reap the benefits of being Boston’s king of comedy.


Featured image by Jason Greenough; he’s at Boston Comedy Fest all week long, so follow him on Twitter @DadBodVanilla.