Entertainment magazine's review of Observe and Report praises the film over the similarly-themed Paul Blart: Mall Cop for one main oft-repeated reason: the former is direct, sad, and "brutal" whereas the latter is funny, and its praise for the performers is secondary.
Robert De Niro was asked in an interview for Parade why he occasionally does "stupid" comedies such as Meet the Parents. De Niro explained that comedy films are just as difficult to make as serious dramas.
Many film comedians have never or hardly won an Academy Award during the height of their careers: Laurel and Hardy received one Oscar for their short "The Music Box". Comedians like Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Stan Laurel and Groucho Marx all received one single Academy Award (for their entire career and achievements) when they had already retired from performing in films. And they were the lucky ones! Other greats like Harold Lloyd, WC Fields, The Three Stooges, Harpo Marx, Chico Marx, Oliver Hardy, Fatty Arbuckle, Harry Langdon all died without ever receiving anything.
Peter Sellers was nominated the Best Actor Oscar for his three-part role in Dr. Strangelove (1964), but lost the award to Rex Harrison in My Fair Lady. 15 years later, he was nominated in the category again for Being There, another satire, but lost to Dustin Hoffman in Kramer vs. Kramer.
Almost any time a sitcom starts to make an attempt at an Emmy nomination, the episode they make for consideration is almost always a Very Special Episode. The laughs come fewer and farther between, a much more serious issue is addressed, and it can often be a Lower Deck Episode if a Supporting Actor award is being considered (the episodes of Roseanne when Jackie was a victim of domestic abuse stand out as this in syndication.)
The song A Comedian at the Oscars performed by Will Ferrell, Jack Black, and John C. Reilly at the 79th annual Academy Awards is a biting satire of this idea. Ferrell and Black begin by pretending to challenge Oscar winners and nominees to a fight over the preferential treatment of dramatic actors before Reilly teaches them that they, too, can win awards if only they learn to accept absurdly tragic roles.
During his life Erik Satie was seen as a musical lightweight who composed silly little tunes with often comedic titles. His legacy as a historically important musical innovator only came decades later after his death.
Despite the enormous technical complexities of his music Spike Jones was never taken seriously by his contemporaries.
Frank Zappa also received more recognition as a innovative composer near the end of his life and mostly after death. The fact that he sabotaged the serious attention that any of his music could have received by injecting comedy into his compositions didn't help matters along. Nor the fact that his sense of humor encompassed both satirical wit and low-brow bawdy jokes.
While nothing to do with films per se, this trope does come up with regards to wrestlers that have comedy gimmicks. A lot of wrestling purists absolutely despise wrestlers that have gimmicks designed to entertain the fans and make them laugh, especially if their fans are primarily children. Some fans that value only the athleticism in wrestling seem to assume that more character-centred wrestlers are somehow "cheating" and aren't real wrestlers when in actuality they do know how to wrestle and instead just choose to be more character based.
Wrestlers with comedy gimmicks are more likely to become The Scrappy to internet fans, especially if they get cheered by the audience. Examples are Santino Marella, Brodus Clay, Scotty 2 Hotty, Doink the Clown etc.
You'll never get a wrestler with a comedy gimmick as a world champion in any major promotion. If a wrestler wishes to become a main eventer in any shape or form then they're going to have to be taken seriously. John Cena is probably the closest to a comedic main eventer WWE has had in recent years.
The Rock is an aversion though his comedy came more from insulting his opponents in clever ways.
Eddie Guerrero got away with it as well and is a notable aversion, possibly because his comedic cheating ways had become so endeared by fans.
Lay Cool are female aversions. The two were essentially exaggerated versions of the Alpha BitchValley Girl and yet managed to dominate the women's division for over a year.
Broadway used to have a musical comedy ghetto that disappeared between the 1940s and the 1960s (though the most acclaimed musicals of the latter decade weren't comedies). There was much controversy in 1931 when Of Thee I Sing became the first musical to win the Pulitzer Prize; falling under the exemption for satire seems to have helped it do so.
Members of Zero Punctuation's hatedom/-dumb often claim that because the series is "only" a comedy, the viewpoints expressed within cannot be taken as actual critical analysis and Yahtzee is not a "real reviewer".
Fans of Yahtzee often express virtually the same opinion: That because he's principally an entertainer, the content of his reviews cannot be criticized because he's "joking".
Very prominent throughout the history of animation. For example, with regards to Looney Tunes, Tex Avery was only nominated twice for the Best Animated Short Oscar without winning, while Bob Clampett was never even nominated at all. Likewise, Chuck Jones received nominations for his later "True Art" shorts, but not for "The Dover Boys", "One Froggy Evening", or "Duck Amuck".
Averted at least once by Friz Freleng. His cartoon "Knighty Knight Bugs" was the only Bugs Bunny cartoon to win an Academy Award.
There was a stretch in the 1940s where Tom and Jerry dominated the Best Animated Short Oscar category by winning a staggering total of seven Oscars.
American Beauty had the tagline in the trailer "If you think a comedy can't be moving, if you think a drama can't be funny, look closer". The film is essentially a comedy with the drama coming to the forefront in maybe the last fifteen minutes and it is widely regarded as one of the best films of the 90s.
Considering cartoon comedies, Tom and Jerry is a major exception. Such shorts as Quiet, Please! and Yankee Doodle Mouse got an Oscar for the Best Short Animated Film; although it's also worth noting that the number of shorts that won this award is the same that their amount that was only nominated. Before Tom and Jerry, cutesy fare like Silly Symphonies shorts tended to always win the award while zany comedies were overlooked.
Back to the Future got an Oscar nomination for best screenplay. It lost, of course, but for a sci-fi teen comedy that's practically a Best Picture win.
Literature/Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is the original Great American Novel, but it is mostly a comedic series of adventures, especially toward the end.
James Joyce's Ulysses, one of the most highly regarded novels of the 20th century, is essentially a comedy. Joyce himself claimed there was "not one single serious line in it". Of course, it does have True Art Is Incomprehensible on its side.