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Here's How Much Time It Really Takes To Film Impractical Jokers

"Impractical Jokers" is a major franchise with the humblest of beginnings. In each episode, four friends compete in various challenges, and whoever takes the least wins gets thrown into a punishment, which could be anything from being handcuffed to a mime to nearly starting a riot at a bingo game as you call out "bingo!" over and over again.

Stars Joe Gatto, James Murray, Sal Vulcano, and Brian Quinn have been friends since high school in Staten Island, and their pitch began with an iPhone video.

"We shot a mini-episode 'sales tape' of the show on an iPhone, and then we pitched it to truTV and they bought it. It was deceptively easy. We were in the right place at the right time, but we'd been working on those videos for years. We like to say we're a 20-year overnight success," Quinn said in 2016 (via AMC).

After rocketing to success, the buddies seem to be experts at the show's format, so how long exactly does it take to piece each episode together?

Episodes are filmed in three to four days

Each "Impractical Jokers" episode takes between three and four days to film, according to the comedians, with one challenge or punishment being filmed per day. They also film nine months of the year to fill massive episode orders from truTV, Sal Vulcano said in 2020 (per Anne Mavity). 

Vulcano went on to explain scheduling the show can often be difficult, as it's a hidden camera series that films on the street or in various businesses, leaving them at the mercy of the availability of each location.

"We don't have a studio space or home base, so we're beholden to the locations that we procure or don't. And sometimes we have stuff booked, and then the person that owns the place or owns the pond is like, 'no,' and that gets bumped down the line," he said. 

As much chaos as there is behind the scenes, you'd never know it watching the show, as the comedians make each episode feel so seamless. They even manage to bring in some massive guest stars and incorporate them into the bits and challenges with ease, including everyone from "Dumb and Dumber" star Jeff Daniels to Kevin Smith and Jason Mewes as Jay and Silent Bob (via MediaVillage).