Louis C.K. headed to Netflix for two stand-up comedy specials

Louis C.K. has signed a deal with Netflix for two comedy specials.
(Evan Agostini / Invision / Associated Press)

Netflix continues its steadfast expansion of stand-up comedy programming with the addition of two new specials from Louis C.K.

The specials will be available exclusively on the streaming service. The first, which was shot in Washington, D.C., and is titled “2017,” will premiere April. 4.

“Louis has been one of the most innovative comedy voices in this new era of stand-up,” Ted Sarandos, chief content officer at Netflix, said in a statement. “He has also been a thought leader in the business of comedy. We have marveled at his creativity and his ability to invent comedically and commercially, and are thrilled that he is bringing his newest specials to Netflix.”

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Netflix has been rigorously expanding its comedy programming, particularly its library of stand-up specials. In recent months, the digital service has signed high-profile comedians Chris Rock, Amy Schumer, Dave Chappelle and Jerry Seinfeld for specials.

The C.K. deal is particularly noteworthy, considering the comedian, in recent years, has experimented with self-distributing new projects on his website to retain complete creative control. He released his 2011 stand-up special, “Louis C.K. Live at the Beacon Theater,” directly to consumers on his website for $5. “Louis C.K. Live From the Comedy Store” followed in January 2015, a few months before the special premiered on FX.

The move marks another relationship between C.K. and a streaming service. At the end of last year, he struck a deal with Hulu for his series “Horace and Pete.” Before Hulu acquired the exclusive streaming rights, the 10-episode show — which starred C.K., Steve Buscemi and Alan Alda — had previously been available only for purchase on C.K.’s website.

C.K., who has taken a break from his acclaimed FX series “Louie,” spent much of last year on tour, and he has performed almost two dozen shows since January.

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