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Aziz Ansari talks about his Comedy Central stand-up special and a strip club outing for the 'Parks and Recreation' gang

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Aziz_cover_digitalMECH-900Aziz Ansari has filmed a Comedy Central stand-up special, “Intimate Moments for a Sensual Evening,” that will air on the cable network on Jan. 17, two days before the gig is released in DVD and CD form. “To have an hour special is really cool,” the 26-year-old Parks and Recreation star tells EW.com. “It’s bigger than the time I filled up my Quiznos Q Rewards Card, but smaller than the time I filled up four Quiznos Q Rewards Cards.” The special, which was recorded this summer at the Brentwood Theater in Los Angeles, includes material from his “Glow in the Dark” tour (“I talk about being a twentysomething dude, just d—ing around all the time,” he notes) and also features Ansari in character as Raaaaaaandy, the overenergized, profane comedian that was seen in the 2009 film Funny People. “Let’s just say a lot of sequins are involved—and a huge sign that says Raaaaaaaandy with eight A’s and all these crazy effects,” he hints. “It’s probably more similar to Soulja Boy’s last tour than any standup specials I’ve seen.”

The filming went surprisingly well, according to Ansari. “The crowd gave me a standing ovation after every single joke—there are 53 standing ovations,” he deadpans. “It’s a little distracting, and some people might say, ‘Wait a second, it looks like it was edited to look like there were 53 standing ovations,’ but that’s not the case. Those were all genuine. I know people are thinking, ‘But there are so many great specials and that’s never happened before.’ Well, I don’t know what to tell you. The material was that strong, and that’s the way those people felt they had to respond—by standing up in the exact same fashion for the exact amount of time, 53 times.’”

The applause continues for Ansari on NBC’s Parks and Recreation as wanna-be player Tom Haverford. In coming weeks, not only do our government goofs embark on a hunting trip, they hit The Glitter Factory—a strip club referenced in a previous episode. Parks and Recreation filmed these scenes at a gentlemen’s club in L.A. called Bare Elegance. “At first I was a little bit worried,” says Ansari, “but when I got there, outside there was a Bare Elegance-wrapped SUV and it said that it was rated No. 1 in Zagats, so I was like, ‘Great!'” You’ll also see Ansari stretch his dramatic chops a bit in an episode that deals with Tom and his green-card marriage, which seems to be on its last legs. “It’s really emotional stuff for Tom, and it was fun for me to do some serious acting,” says Ansari, who’ll appear on the big screen next year in Get Him to the Greek. “I spent a lot of time on the phone with actors like Daniel Day Lewis and Bruce Willis about how I should approach the role and get into that mindset.” What advice did he receive? “Bruce Willis just kept saying, ‘Welcome to the party, pal,” and different quotes from Die Hard so that wasn’t very helpful,” he quips. “And then Daniel Day Lewis told me I should quit and start cobbling shoes. Neither of them were that helpful so I just kind of had to dig deep and hopefully pull it off.”

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