Industry Weekly


How Cosmo landed Adam Sandler’s comedy residency

Adam Sandler plays the first of three scheduled shows at the Chelsea on November 10.

From its very beginnings in December 2010, the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas has established itself with edgy entertainment offerings, setting a standard for cool on the Strip. Comedy has been a piece of that puzzle, with big names like Amy Schumer, Kevin Hart, Chelsea Handler and Dave Chappelle performing there.

Now Cosmo has its first comedy resident: film star and Saturday Night Live alum Adam Sandler, who plays his first show at the Chelsea on November 10. “What’s great about it is that he’s here because he wants to be here,” says Fedor Banuchi, the Cosmopolitan’s vice president of entertainment. “Obviously he could spend his time doing something more lucrative, but this is something he wants to do creatively. He’s passionate about it, and we’re positive that will trickle down into the show.”

Sandler, who has garnered critical acclaim for his performance in the new Noah Baumbach Netflix film The Meyerowitz Stories, isn’t full-on touring but has played a few stand-up gigs lately. Banuchi says Sandler decided he wanted to do more Vegas dates and began hunting for the perfect venue. “He was very involved in the process, coming down to do a tour of every venue he was looking at, and that’s rare in the entertainment industry,” he says. “He spent a lot of time on the stage and around [the Chelsea] to get a feeling for the room. He said, ‘This is a great comedy room; I feel it.’”

Sandler’s deal with Cosmo is flexible, Banuchi says, with three shows currently scheduled and the potential to add more throughout 2018.

“Our entertainment strategy from the time we opened was to present to the public what we thought was contemporary entertainment that, at that time, Vegas wasn’t giving them,” Banuchi says. “Since that time we’ve had more competition—other venues have opened and people are booking more live music—but as far as we’re concerned, nothing has changed. ... We take pride in the fact that if you look at all the music and things we’ve booked since day one and put everything on an iPod and put it on shuffle, most people would recognize that’s a pretty cool playlist.” Adam Sandler at the Chelsea at the Cosmopolitan, November 10 & 17 and January 27.

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Brock is an award-winning writer who has been documenting life in Las Vegas for 20 years. He currently leads entertainment ...

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