MATT RIFE recently joined as one of the co-hosts of MTV's TRL (Total Request Live) reboot, which allows him to introduce to the show some of the current biggest music artists in the world. But Matt's not just a host, he's also an emerging comedian who has opened for comedians such as Mike Epps, D.L. Hugely, Ralphie May, Dane Cook, Tommy Davidson and DeRay Davis. Being the youngest performer at world famous The Laugh Factory, Rife also uses his comedic sensibility to bring out the laughs on TRL, which airs daily. In between his stand-up and presenting, Matt has also began to dabble into acting - something that he expressed to me as his primary passion and focus going forward.
AC: Do you prefer stand up, acting or hosting? Do you feel more focused on one in particular?
Matt Rife: I prefer and am more focused on acting. It’s my primary passion and talent and I love it so much. I’m really working towards building a solid future and career based in that world. Stand-up is my first love and I’ll never stop doing it, but acting just truly catches my dreams.
Did you ever watch the original TRL? Was there a standout episode for you?
I honestly never used to watch the original TRL. I’ve seen episodes and moments but it wasn’t really my thing growing up. I’m aware and have so much respect for its legacy, but I feel like that helps me bring my own thing to it and not allow myself to try and copy Carson Daly.
How did your involvement on the show come about?
MTV has been an incredible family to me and we love to work together. When they were putting this project together, I suppose they took into consideration my love of music and pop culture, as well as my experience in comedy and live performances and it seemed like a good fit.
What artists do you really want to appear and perform on the show?
I would really like Chance the Rapper, J Cole, Kendrick Lamar, or Childish Gambino to come on the show.
Which comedians do you look up to?
I look up to Dave Chappelle, Dane Cook, Ralphie May, and Jim Carrey.
Do you have an all-time favorite joke?
One of my favorite jokes has to be Chappelle’s joke - “Bill Cosby superhero”. I won’t ruin it for you, but it’s hilarious, incredibly well thought out around a very sensitive topic for a lot of people, and it comes back around with a great callback.
Favorite Film: Grease
Best show to binge-watch: Stranger Things
Everyone’s got an idea for a clever app, what’s yours? App that autocorrects the word “duck” to F*** every time...instead of how it messes with us every time now. Reverses it.
Favorite actor: Ryan Reynolds
Last song you listened to: “We Could Be Free” by Vic Mensa
Toughest audition: I had the flu when auditioning for Archie on Riverdale.
Favorite word: Grim
Advice to your younger self: Work harder and erase your browser history.
Biggest pet peeve: When someone says “Dab on them haters”.