Wednesday, June 9, 2010

John Oliver to cover World Cup for "The Daily Show"

photoDo you have World Cup fever? Perhaps it takes a foreigner -- in this case, "Daily Show" correspondent John Oliver -- to really get Americans stirred up about the quadrennial competition.

According to a Comedy Central press release, Oliver and "TDS" producer Tim Greenberg will be reporting from  Johannesburg, South Africa for a multi-part series entitled "World Cup 2010: Into Africa." "In the first piece, which airs tomorrow [June 10], Oliver embeds with the U.S. Soccer team as they train for their highly-anticipated game against England. Future segments will see Oliver sitting down with the acting South African ambassador, taking a look at the first 'African' World Cup, examining the current state of race relations and, finally, celebrating the true spirit of the game.

"'As a little boy, my only dream was to one day play for England in the World Cup. It seems that the closest I will ever get to that dream is to go to the World Cup and make fun of it,' said Oliver. 'If these pieces result in anything less than soccer becoming the number one sport in America, I will deem them a total failure.'"

"TDS" is famous for virtually sending its correspondents all over the world via green screen, which makes it a bit of a surprise when one of them actually turns up in a real foreign locale. Jason Jones traveled to Iran in 2009, while former correspondent Rob Riggle reported from China in 2008 and Iraq in 2007.

Photo: Justin Chabot