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Kevin Pollak Returns

Kevin Pollak (Kevin Pollak’s Chat Show, comedian) returns to the Nerdist to talk about his new documentary Misery Loves Comedy and if misery really is a crucial element to comedy. They also talk about what drives someone to be an artist, and why Matt is such a grumpy guy! See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Welcome in his podcast six hundred and seventy two. Let's go to the commune cork board at events that Nerdist dot com. If you want to be added to this event that nervous dot com, our listeners of the podcast called the Historians Movie Review, he looks history through the lens of film and reviews film, in the context of the historical events and topics in the film find it at his story movie review, DOT, libsyn dot com, also, if you're into printing, laser cutting more check out hex lab makerspace in LA it's community workspace, in LOS Angeles, for people to come in building build an with other, like minded makers to learn more about it, go to hexlabmakerspace dot com, We are doing it a beta test on Monday, the eleventh of May nine pm at meltdown at nerd about their space over there. So go. Do nerd melt la dot com for tickets, even if it says so that
there's always a standby line, and everyone gets in so check it out it's a week from today Monday, the eleventh over at nerd melt. This episode is Mister, Kevin Pollack, Kevin who has been a dear friend of mine for quite awhile. Now, a fine podcaster, a wonderful comedian and actor. He made this movie called misery, loves comedy, which is all about sort of the the psychological state. Mind of what it means to be a comedian he's interviewed so many wonderful people in this in this documentary and minute, two so wonderful people and then me, but then, but a lot of people that are very relevant. Your interest that you will love. So check it out. It's available now on all the digital platforms. Misery loves, comedy directed by Kevin Pollak. Who was a lie a lovely man he's also number six. Seventy two with Kevin Pollak just about our now entering nowenteringnerdist dot com
They send you the. I did not say what they didn't. Maybe this to me. I just bought it on. I tunes you mother, because you're not ever. I like to support yeah. I hear you me too, so I bought it on. I tunes and I watched it last night and I wound is really fun. I mean, like you know it's a vision. Where are you recording? Okay? First of all, yes, sir, It's shocking to Maine that we've been doing this podcast for five years, like that freaks me out 'cause. It still feels like oh
the thing that we and I just remembered that you know one of the episodes. We had to do over yeah yeah yeah it's a reunion tour for the first time at my table, I'm just remembering that Kevin is one of the couple of episodes that we had. Do over. I think there were two episode had to do over. You have that you and Doug Benson, and because the equipment it's stolen. Was that what it was yeah? I still have my honda. Civic equipment got stolen in the Honda Civic, and so all we had was an Iphone app that I used to iphones and it it didn't work. It didn't workout, well, the iphones from five years ago. Did the board sound as well. So it's really impacting senior house dining room table yet so we had to had to call you and say I'm
We will leave us already the same. This is by using you know all that time, great job of pretending it was all fresh. It was a different story. That's crazy, yeah, a I how gosh I don't! Now that we've had a do over in this six years of my little, wildly less popular podcast, pcs. We were one of the first one of the long standing these popular. It's because I am what is known as this to go from pay to not pay yeah exact, not pay to pay ten. Do you like the show you like to pay for everyone to. I don't like it anymore, yeah Kevin Pollak, your well, the dare you it was. We were up to one million downloads, months, maybe or week. I can't remember it's been so long. We really were swinging it and and
yeah. So so someone said well what if you charge like, I don't know zero dollars and ninety nine cents for twenty five of them not even for one yeah. You know just so we just to pay and I had to sit down with the Itunes fellas. You know, and then they were said well, you know we've never charged for a podcast. I said right, you charge room for music you've destroyed the record labels, but for for a and it's on zero dollars and ninety nine cents for four minutes right right exactly so you see how it all works out on your talking twenty five hours of content. Technically, almost forty or fifty because you know I tends to go the long winded, so we average closer to two hours per so it was really ridiculous and across the board the internet said fuck you. It was fantastic and within ten days and went back into my show and said you're right, I'm an asshole. It's free again reminds me of the Jackie Gleason story that he did that show he.
I'm show in the 60s, like a game, show One episode and people do not the uniformly not like the show. So we came on next week and- and he said I'm really sorry about that. So now this is just going to be a chat, show and then and then for the rest of the didn't, cancel him because he had a commitment, so he had his friends on and they just chatted it became chat. Show she says that, so you know you. Thank you. Listen to what is well, you know the city on their part, not to be like hey here's, a dollar for fifty hours when they came in because it was six years ago. I think also the podcast world was so new that piano note that if you think they have choices now yes certainly had enough choices, then to say: well, all these other ones are free. Why aren't I it's so very hard to go from free too? I remember talking to you about it. You said yeah, it's kind of promotional for thing else, I'm doing, and I said yeah you're right but buddy I gotta. Machete in each hand and I'm going through the jungle, and if you would just stand by- and I totally understood why you and Mary
A few other said: good luck, buddy. You know it was, and that turns out no correct way to do any of this should just the way the you know the ones we choose yeah. For me it was a. I was. I never we thought about trying to make money from the podcast initially was just. I want to reach the widest audience yeah, and I knew that clearly a paywall would cut our audience. And significantly, and so I just didn't it was more important for me to get people like that. Also they would come and see us live and all that stuff. But I don't know if I still don't of anger and hate is really the way like when you're a guy who's who's making a lot of contents like a dollar, for, twenty five shows like that to me. I completely understand, while you were with this crazy- and it's also is the only in remains the only form of entertainment that is free on this level. You know,
I mean no, I mean so I that's why some of the Itunes guys when I met with him 'cause, they said you know just we finally got to the point where they hemmed and hard and find they said we don't have the code for you to charge your podcast, it's not even written, so we wouldn't, even so that took, I don't know eight hundred and ten months weeks for them to get someone to actually write the code so that a podcast could charge 'cause within their system. The algorithm. Wasn't there blah blah blah, so they said trying to talk me out of it. They said so you know why why, and I said well, you charge for music a charge for tv you charge for movies, you charge for books, you charge for every single form of entertainment, except for this, so I kind of feel like I'm getting a big cold wet dead fish in my face of a slap and as a thank you for all this. Effort so anyways. It was much more important for the audience to tell me fuck you
then for Itunes. So I beat the system. I got them to write the code that was awesome yeah. And every now and then you know I'll, be reminded but you saw the film let's go back to that yeah people will pay for that. They already have we're doing extremely well in Itunes. That we move shot to number one on documentaries within two days, and now I've only been bested by documentaries that have been used in zero dollars and ninety nine cents there's a couple of those and they tend to do a little bit better. Speaking of the ninety nine said model, you know I hadn't my friends mom saw it a few days ago, and she all oh, my mom saw the comedy documentary and she said you're really great, and I was like: oh that's nice, so we watch
I'm mortified when I realized that one of the things you used to me was we talked about the time I in the church once yeah. That was fun for your future Ex mother in law yeah. So I I read over those like I'm sorry you just have to do is like I don't care if you're super good on yeah, I just love it. Patty Hearst knows your creeper yeah. Now, everyone, and by the way you walk because I feel like I did you and your relationship a solid by forcing this out of you and into the conversation now it's now, but it was. It was not to worry about that. One, there's, no more! The funny part about it is that I feel like it's sort of I mean I guess it's sort came out of the idea of comics tackling uncomfortable
yeah, when Matt later says I a girl, crying college yeah. I feel bad it's a real powerful moment and the truth is I, the original thesis you have to be miserable to be funny. Became the third act when I had seventy hours of material to edit a ninety four minute from and with no script and no narrative, I kind of had to create one and in the process First, two acts were getting to know these people and getting to give a about what they do and why they chose this life and what they've gone through and then the third act is how miserable have to be, but we've sort of been seeing all along whether they're miserable or not I mean it could be, it could have been a series like it could have been like a like, a five or six part, HBO Doc about comedy that in the works good, not necessarily with them, but yeah no trouble. Tribeca films bought. The movie That's what we premiered in and talks of the sea, these versions again with seventy hours of material. It's it's a little ridiculous. I mean I know that much been an embarrassment of riches of. I don't know how I look at this, but I can't get them yeah because it's all
puzzle pieces where there's no photograph of the puzzle on the side of the box, no they're just puzzle pieces. And there's no. You talk about no correct path, just the one. We choose their Lord, I cut seventeen versions before I showed it to anyone and then twenty seven more I cut for ten months, and I would have continued to this day of the Sundance submission deadline. Hadn't stopped me, oh my god, there's no there's just and also you know. We've sat next to editors in our careers as they push the buttons. I had never sat in the vacuum alone and push the buttons that I highly recommend It is extraordinary. It's the final rewrite that you've never thought. In my case, I've always heard director say that editing was a final re write. In my case. I think it was the original script because again there wasn't more then I went in so I had to write the script in editing and then rewrite It was like a reality show
so- I think I'm Reginald reality shows now the relative- that's not how they work and how their drifted ahead of time. Oh yeah, of course buy consultants, my nonunion you're, not in Excel. What is Jamie Say, which is causing the symptoms by nonunion equivalent nonunion Mexican equivalent Simpsons quote, but it elsewhere Virgo yeah, yeah yeah, but that's that is a tremendous I mean I I've I feel like. I would buckle from the weight of having to make those kinds of decisions, because you have. I mean it's it's pretty much everyone that you would want to see yeah that walking about comedy with who who was that with was or that was the thing also. I was wanting to include everyone 'cause. It was pretty much going to be. Whoever said yes, that's who I put in the schedule. We had to have an actual shooting schedule of four straight weeks, five day consecutive
weeks and whoever was available in those four weeks one week and you're three weeks, and I light is who we got right. So you know what the podcast booking this thing. So as one of the so the wanted me to direct the movie 'cause. I could reach talent, but we had twenty five people say: yeah when were slaughtered in when we started to shoot, which I thought would be amazing: twenty five hours, seven hundred and ninety minutes at a twenty five dollars, thunder great and as we were, shooting people kept saying yes and I was a girl who and say no, so we just kept sliding them into the schedule of those four weeks and by the end we had almost sixty and then the thought was well. I wanted to be in the movie. Or sixty to. Ninety minutes is a minute and a half each. That's no good right, so, then it was a matter of hi I want to get a real sense of these people and not, and but I want Lou them all. And then once I had too sure it and really write a narrative is when the chapters and title cards came about and once the chapters in title cards,
about, you, know losing your amateur status, your influence, the Brit who stole from spinal tap another influences. So that's pretty ridiculous that Steve Coogan admits he stole from Michael Mckean and yet that that made me laugh till the end of time. I love story of uh. I love the uh. Meeting recorder meeting. Steph. Curry and just seeing, but it's so funny to see those consistency's in the comma brain where you take a shot I'm like? Oh we're all in the same and not everyone is land, doesn't like your being a dick yeah, yeah yeah. So once those chapters in title cards took place now I had a story so like you're doing read? The old adage is if it doesn't feed the story, you can't keep it in editing. It has to keep moving the story forward and that's, I think why certain people in aspects got trimmed down. You know more than I
have wanted. Ultimately, so the tv. If there is an internet or tv or cable version of this, then it would be focusing on one or two people or a theme, a chapter yeah and maybe for people. So I I did get a letter saying using the same, but if you're a shot or not that's in the movie yeah hello, yeah, just the other, sixty let's mark so yeah? You would I mean yeah, you, don't you don't need, more. Unless there are a couple more I mean there are a lot of people that just one available who said yes in the scheduling didn't work, I Dave Chapelle. The ultimate could have been on the poster for this topic of misery loves comedy. This is the by try we, hard not to believe in a God entity or a universe. Even so the very
day of shooting in New York, the very first day of shooting there's a Starbucks across my hotel, I'm staying 'cause, that is New York, and I go into the Starbucks before shooting the first day. Cruise already on location. Ok, I'm on my way, first day of directing unbelief excitement in the air. For me personally, I go to the Starbucks, Four people in line the guy in front of me tall. I can only see the back of his head. We make it out. Then I hear his voice. Holy crap, Dave and Dave Chappelle turns around now all the gin joints in all the world sure there are three million Starbucks in New York yeah, but how many in midtown two million just make a Starbucks hotel by the way. Technically, I wasn't so who and he was staying at the same hotel and that's the only reason that Starbucks right yeah so but still there were. He was in the Starbucks for ninety seconds, yeah, so he turns around now. I realized I in fact have ninety seconds to get my case across to him.
The time day one shooting this movie and is there anyway. You know what I mean yeah. How am I going to get Dave Chappelle? The universe has placed him in front of me and I've got ninety seconds to not tackle him to the ground right, but but really forced him to do or you know He says yes immediately gives me his digits he's off to Boston. To do a thing will be right back, I'm going to be there all week, we're going to get him it's great and then scheduling just didn't workout. You know heartbreak beyond and we text me afterwards be in a lane. Next, three weeks I know you're shooting in so best efforts were made. You know so in terms of shooting it out additional footage for anything, more yeah, there's a lot of people. That said yes, after the fact Jack black. Am Adams Sandler. I mean a lot of heavy weights to which is just frustrating but in any way to get Louie Anderson
I always remembered, let me move the microphone's dancing. You can see Maine feared versus horse joke in the ninth Andrew Young comedian, special we move. This makes it so you can see me, but by the way I had seen him do that joke on stage ten years before but I always go to the last. But I like to think is the last three. Which you probably shot in one day of family feud and hosting and ilost they'd broken his spirit. They'd broken his his reason to live and eg well was looking at this family, whose names and faces he would never remember, let alone be able to stay in the moment, turn back to the board show was there was nothing left. The last show he was just a. I just all I hear him say is viewed because he used to just say: oh yeah list can weird
yeah, so there therein lies the misery of you know. Other things I want to show in the moving people like Judd Apatow we're talking about. I usually think I would happen happiness and editing or my movies succeed, right and then he realized that he found almost no happiness in their successful. These any points out. Some the film did not end well but for the ones who have done well. I found almost no happiness in that, Now I realize I'm finding happiness in the doing of it. You know filming in the editing- and I that's not healthy so now- figure out how to find happiness in doing nothing and I'm failing miserably the whole section in the film was like well there's the movie, Wells Fargo that mean that was literally it, but Everyone just contributed in their own way. Obviously, and that became the answer to the question you have to be miserable to be funny turns misery is a life experience. It's a guarantee with death and taxes, you're going to be miserable, there's no way around and
The artist has to work till you hear that Switzerland, you fuc after a articulate that misery right. That's our job. And you add, if you're a songwriter, a painter or performer or whatever you have to Arctic, misery in either a painfully personal way that maybe the audience is frightened at first, and then begins the left or such universal. As Steve Coogan says in the film you just the light on what it's like to be human yeah right, even sign thirty five years ago, when he did first did these saw last in the dryer. That's minutiae, but it's life's universal limit. Misery mean that's why that joke exists so the film then becomes a journey of bigger to me was- Children suffer from hey. Look at me, as I think heard saying in the phone because their children they need attention but
I don't suffer from hey look at me. Otherwise, Facebook is in a multi billion dollar business. Right, that's crystal clear who uses. Hey look at me as a career as a profession to devote your life, guarantee of rejection through through all of it, yeah well like everyone, everyone who does comedy is broken in some way. 'cause, it's just most Jews, it's just it's just a weird. It turns out. We don't even have the market cornered on that. It's just a weird thing to do is just a weird thing to do. I mean I love it, and you know when people say I'm trying to stand up for the first time this guy wrote a post on Reddit on our nurse subreddit that he's trying comedy for the first time tonight in London he was really nervous, and so I wrote I wrote out, like you know, That's your pants! The anticipation is worse. Once you get on stage will be fine, it'll feel like it's taking forever, but when you're done, you won't be able to remember it'll feel like it went like that, and you know, but just you'll know afterwards. If this is something it's really in your gut, because, no matter how good or-
it goes and you will bomb. Sometimes, if you still say I got, pick up there and do that again. I don't know if that's really a choice. I mean you make the choice of whether or not you're going to follow that. But I don't know if you choose the the sort of that maleki pull to get on stage in spite of how terrifying or how much rejection or how much, how good or bad you do. You need to be up there or you don't yeah, it's that simple yeah I mean I don't uh America's number one fear above death is public speaking, thankfully, because there for those of us who choose to do it, look special and it's almost like- there's a weird sort of flip in the brain of a comedian who most of the our have a bit of social anxiety or weird in social situations. You can put them in front of a hundred thousand people and
be you know put in put in like one on one and run with it like three or four eight people, and it's like I don't know if you feel weird yeah yeah, we do have all social anxiety. I just remember that: did you should see that did watch the trailer on line by the way Tribeca cutter, trailer you're in it. That's why yeah, yeah yeah, it's a very fast moving pop, be cool great trail, a five minute. I yeah you had no itself and I could connect them crystals on a continuous loop. Have you seen? I don't know I it's great. I didn't get the drill, they did a great job. Well, that's good! To great yeah I mean it's Are you doing any this? Taking you out of any live because you've been so focused on this movie for so long or is he not been doing any yeah? I? Yes, yes, it has, and now I've been asked to direct a comedy. I mean that's
with the biggest thing. That's come from this whole effort other than the personal achievements, which is first time well, just finishing the film again getting through direct editing that education again, I highly recommend but getting accepted into Sundance. You know the seven thousand movies admitted so being selected is the victory yeah right and you talk about the timing stuff again fuckin' universe, so I'm on this Chuck Lorre Show mom reoccurring. Second, half of the first season, first half of the second season, the second season Big bang theory. So now the world is watching it. It's got the best slot lead in in and television so becomes a top ten, sometimes top five show, and halfway through the second season of that joy, ride, Chuck Lorre decides my character has to be killed. He wants to. Wedding, and I'm it yeah celebration. But you did you
create a paywall for apartment. Technically, I said he had to pay anymore. No, no! He so we've ever seen the show, but the two women Allison Janney Non affairs. They must face misery constantly. That's what the show was built for for these two women to suffer forever more and then they wrote this love story with Maine Allison Janney, who gave birth to Anna Faris years before They wanted to re kindling error at of the second season and they basically painted themselves into a corner so anyways that phone call comes. We have to kill you the beginning of October, the film is going to debut that January. It Sundance my film. They shoot me dying two months before Misery loves comedy debuts at Sundance right. They could have aired it any week anytime. Whenever that episode was going to air the night before the world. Premiere of my
directorial debut. My character is killed on mom in primetime that episode being a top five for the week the next morning when the internet is slightly pissed, that my character was killed for those who, like the show, it's announced, the Tribeca film Bought my directorial debut, which will have its world premiere that afternoon, I could have been sitting home eating bon in a old after We could have been the worst instead, so window houses in a garage door opens. It was that transition and timing. Again. I just should not believe in this universe that keeps looking at in the you dedicated film to Robin Yeah but he's not in it did you shoot him ever? It was their stuff that you shot and you're like. I feel weird putting it in because of what happened um so getting.
To the who is left out question in the scheduling of everyone. It really wasn't possible to schedule everyone, so whoever was avail. I said so while we were filming before we I called Robin. He had been a mentor of mine when I started twenty years old in San Francisco. He had just become a made man from Mork and Mindy covered time magazine and right. When I started all that was happening for him and he all those times you may know back in San Francisco is where he raised his family so men mentored me and other people, he was just a great champ and then POW, all these years, um and so when I was going to do the movie people who knew him knew he suffered from depression. His whole life so yeah there again he's and also his appearance on Marron is, I think, the only time with his public record of him kind of talking about it. So when I called him, he was in the middle of shooting that the show the half hour,
single camera. So that's twelve or fourteen hour days, five days a week, the same exact time I was shooting the documentary, so there physically no time and less willing to take the entire crew and go and sit in astray wait till he had a free hour and this just wasn't going to happen right for the locations of all the interviews. I know we we came to your office. You can't really tell based on the visual, I don't think, That was the thing was where you going to shoot all these people. So I got on the phone with Robin and I could tell in the conversation two pals talking when he was explaining why the English, was horrible that he also was starting to treat it like an interview for the documentary, the Congress slowly became a therapy session a in a in a very focused Asian, on the subject at hand and then ended having a second car. Both of these lasted an hour the starting with I.
I really want to be there. I'm sorry. I can't and then forty nine minutes of what the subject actually means to him and there was never even a thought that went through my head of recording it. I was just talking to Someone who I knew was close to the subject. Someone had been a mentor of mine, a friend and not mention world renowned talent who would rise to the top of the names of on the post to hear the two, these long long, long conversations that meant the world to me and then, when he passed I was in editing and the producers called said because everyone, you know, was kind of freaking out. It was within the comedy community. It was more than a bombshell, so my producers first called and said: I'm sorry for your loss 'cause. They knew who do you want to go back and fill him a few more people that were in the movie already and just ask them how they're feeling right now and what Robin meant to them? And I said you are producer
I won't damn you to Hell for asking, but that's the most advantageous self serving idea you've ever had and I'm going to hang up now. So no that's not going to happen and then in the end, it just made sense to dedicate the film to him, and you know the closing credits out of, as I say, and I think, love and respect, which is really if you had passed and we had talked and he was never going to be a part of the conversation. I think I I still do that because of what he meant to be in the top coming of his passing. Is it? Is it sad? It's is comedy sad I mean is pulling the curtain back and that sort of like you know that old joke about the oh. You should go see the clown. This is, I am that clown. You know the depressed guy tears behind the cloud. Yes is it it Is it sad? It's comedy sad. Well, I think when you get off stage, no matter what your disposition, if you're a prone to misery person, if your glass half full you get off,
after taking the audience for a ride of your choosing, let's say for an hour and you control the highs and lows as Lewis, blacks, as in the film. I finally took me years to realize that. I was in the silence when I cry moment. I knew the audience was listening. The power of that knowing you're about to. For the comedy payload as it were around the corner. So you control that for an hour and you get off stage. There's gonna be a let down, it's a guarantee and it's going to feel like depression, right, actual endorphins released when you're on stage during that hour, like a runners high, it's been document that control that you have on stage does not exist in life for a minute. You just did it for an hour at a time that is a drug. When Jimmy Fallon says he needed that drug to go to the next club in town play five clubs and I because he just needed more drugs. It is ridiculous. High, so yeah you're you're going to go right into depression and then the rest of it just matters or
your main to whether or not your a a a naturally depressed person, sure Jim Jefferies, who has one of the funniest moments in the movie to me when he talks about observing the basketball, spinning unicycle family, that's all they were on America's got talent or something yeah question was that's gotta, be one person's passion, in that family more than one person? Would you an interest in the third act of the movies talking? Yes, for ten years I've been on and off and in the presence and I've been suicidal and not about my career, but just about life that the same guy, who was ridiculously funny and honest about and then also raising his kid and how much I want to make sure he's normal 'cause. I was raised without money and now he's raised in a rich family and how do I make sure he's not a fuckwitt. Do I take him
city holidays like I had, but then I want the coconut in the island right he's saying an you know. All of that stuff was just him talking. None of that from his act. In fact, I thought the basketball spending unicycle thing was and I asked him afterwards when I was in editing cuz- I kept coming back to it. Cuz it made me laugh. And I called him and said this is a bit from Iraq 'cause I'm not! sure I wanted in the film. If you were passing off yeah, that's not cool, and he said no, and I said then it should be a bit 'cause it mate and he said no- I haven't done it since I kind of forgot. I said it. And I said: well, you should do it. He said now: it's in your movie, that's good, but it's it's a phenomenal bit. You know what I mean, so I think the misery when you come off stage. Isn't is heightened if you have it in you already and if not you you just crave that that power and control. Well, I think it's also an emotional crash. The way that you would physically crash, if you just ran
and really hard for an hour. So if you ran a marathon afterwards, your you're going to be a little lifeless, you know, and so you feel you So much of energy like keeping to keep the energy up, keep the energy of community up that you're. Just it's like you, you've you've, scooped, all the coal there you have it on you know in your reserves in that part of biological, I have to be emotional or mental interesting. You said 'cause like for me, the high of the doing stand up in front of a bunch of people is the immediately immediately after it's done. Feel high because it's like, thank God we did it yeah, but but the more you you know it's funny because it when you first start out five seven minutes feels like an eternity and then fifteen minutes feels like whoa and then it has to do twenty or twenty five or thirty and they're like oh, my god. Maybe I can scrape together and then, when you first headlining like fifty. Then it's an hour God. How am I going to fill that and now I feel like goes by like that like it's. No, you know so it's
really trying to control the experience as as it's happening but yeah. I do someone just told shut down some venue, I'm trying remember what it was that you would just lay there and ended up doing like an hour and a half- when you were scheduled to an hour because the room was just so great. Two hours in Madison yeah, I did two hours. Ever done two hours on stage before and I certainly would never go in two hours tonight, yeah, but I'm going to need to do two hours. I don't know what you have planned, but I know you're only paying me for one good yeah. It didn't feel like two hours to me and the audience it seems not into it for the time that it was that I did feel like I was holding them hostage for two hours like it like the last forty five minutes. Looking at the curtain pointing at your watch or we
not going anywhere lock the doors you know but uh, but it was fun. It was really. It was really fun. Well, there's the drug again and for Matt you can't wait to get off stage. It's just the joy of being done. Comp Lishman, I like finishing accomplishments, that's the real joy of just going. That's done one more one more notch, I'ma done built! That's interesting! I think if you did stand up a lot yeah, it would shift because now, because You stand up so rarely now that it is like a feet when you're able to do it. You know I can still do that and it might seem like a chore. Oh it always silly always seems like so with everything is a chore to me. Nothing is not a true waking up in the morning so long to hear those words. We got going, it's everything, we just arrived at the bigger actually than the biggest for me. It's like it's shocking documentary. Just follow him around. Cannot
down either, because I can't stop because I hate that more than doing yeah, but so you're, you're you're you're, a prisoner of your own drum and everything's, not sure insane like I should be live in life, like ones like wrap up here I should go home and just by the way in around here that this argument, with with 'cause there's very, people more visible on a moment. I'm yes, chases and- and he now and he's made a career on and he's happy to celebrate and talk about it openly. And I and I keep trying to convince many- won't listen. Your joy is and that that's where you thrive, that's where you are an artist, that's where you've now got a of a greater career, because you you, you found the platform and you just keep being miserable because he keeps insisting he wants to get to a place of less. I said you'll, I'm sure of approval up and die The idea of retiring from most artists sounds good on paper or a vacation looks terrific in writing. But when you go to do it
You just lose. What made you either you thought miserable or technically happy Well, maybe you know you feel alive almost kind of wonder with some people if they almost have like you know like settings for a game controller, where you flip everything like it's, they don't identify identify a opposite values of things. So they go Oh well, I need to be this, but I'm always this it's like. Well, maybe that state is actually what you think you want you just don't wreck I don't know. I think I think your settings really. You know, I think it's like trying to figure out. If if your settings are where you want them to be yeah? And I don't the I don't know the answer that, because I think you know things that that, used to identify as like. Oh this is this is what I want when I look back and go no! No! No! That actually was not that's what I thought, but that's not the way it actually was now. I am
first and everything. I think I want I know, eventually, I'm not going to want it well like, for instance, ridiculous. I used to think you know. When I was younger. I would think that you know the drama in a relationship. Equal passion like that. You know talking movies, told us well and also Alice, only see I almost sort of like, and I think, a better and analogy for comedy would be, You know when you, when you try to do something and you're putting a lot of, there you go. This is working. This is work. This is what you're supposed to do then have an amazing set where you didn't do anything where it feels like you didn't do anything and you're like I don't know, I didn't really do anything go yeah yeah, you were just being so it's idea of being versus doing, and I used to think the value was in feeling the effort but I sort of feel like the value is in is in not feeling the effort of like here being you're just existing and you're not trying to force
Our result you're just you're just you're, so I do that. I just exist constantly, but it's the it's the it's always the lead up to whatever it is, I'm going to do once I go to do the thing I'm doing I adjust exist. To me. When I mean it's always the preamble to the bucking thing I think Matt, whenever, whenever you have to go, do anything whether it's go to work notification. Go on vacation. Take a bike ride do anything. The second but like I'm going to do this, I imagine the theme to dirty jobs plays in your head all right. Well, that's not dirty jobs. I ambition ultimately, is the fuel you know right. The ambition to accomplish something you set out your mind to do or to achieve a part of your career that you've now been allowed to attempt the ambush
resultantly the thing that keeps driving us and then along the way we find out what we actually enjoy and don't enjoy. But the train just keep got move and you know I said yes to direct in this movie at the I read the script and it's based on a a high concept, but it actually happened this guy. Can Baker wrote a book, Barrett. We was thirty, they found a brain, tumor benign and they removed it, and but it was pressing against us, but to a Terry Glenn and he went through puberty at age. Thirty, oh my god, exactly how that's a high concept? You could go into a studio and pitch yeah, but I actually have this fucking guy and so the second act. When it happens, it's hilarious and hijinks and arch and great, but that first ACT just needed to be way.
Grounded in reality, as we get to know this guy and care about him and his friends, and it wasn't so when I was asked to read the script and went in to meet with the people about directing it. I just said fuck it I'm going to tell him what's wrong with our movie and and there was something about ambition not being in the way or fuel, they are pulling me into this job. Oh my god, I get to direct a comedy, someone even heard. This is from a documentary and there's interest, so they ambition trained said, go fucking, take that meeting and get this job. You get to direct. Somebody else is comedy you stupid, son of a bit so Yes, yes! Yes, yes, yes, until you run the set, and I went in and said, here's what's wrong. Uhm! I don't care about these two lead characters because all their friends are dick heads. What is the deal now with everyone's friends being assholes beaches and excited? And I don't you know, make me care about these fucking people make him real and make them talk the way that twenty eight year olds talk right.
But why is this guy, the douche? Why does he have? Why not make him successful and handsome people think he's a douche because their envious or whatever, but he's not actually a douche. He just like successful handsome guy. So anyways I went in there and told everything is wrong and unfortunately, they said great now go. Do that so ultimately, but there there was one of the very few things moments where I got off the ambition, train and just said: I'm actually going to have artistic take and a point of view on this and let's see what happens yeah, but I think it's just about adjusting your goal. As opposed to your goal in that moment was to make something. That you cared about which is and still have the same result as the M was the ambition based goals or better, but there
I think they're a little more rewarding than just like I'll, be rich and famous. You know like that, or I just get to do this again 'cause. That was the ambition trainer at first thought. Oh, it was a knee jerk instinct and also to do this again. It also creates fear, because you're afraid of free to losing this, I'm afraid of not get I am afraid of you know and hang on the train in that stuff. Give me your word is in the rear, leads to anger. Anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering, and then you have another suffering leads to the dark side, and then you get a seventy five billion dollars worth of movies guys I'm still worried about main yeah. What I really thought. You want to talk about it or is everything bad about it? It's everything that sure, because I'm not sure what would not be your free, I don't know, that's the thing going to a baseball game. Still, it sure park. Where am I going to park Your fiance is one of the coolest fuckin',
people in the world, she's fantastic. So how did she handle that she's very good at at everything she good it handle you yeah. How issue with the I don't know, king of chores, it's a great great, because are you constantly feeling comfortable enough around here to complain about everything but yeah, DR that's, causing that rising? Does it yeah interesting, don't creates a self fulfilling see where you were trying to drive her away so that you can go? Look what happened so no, I don't have that ok good. Well then, at least you don't have that 'cause, Dory funk, I use here's the thing: here's the problem with Maine yeah. I think everything is a chore, but I also know everything is going to workout fine for me. Doesn't matter what to happen it up like you know, this is really going to be fine. You know that yeah in your heart, don't my way into everything. So this is this is it this is a uh.
Is a habit, though this is a pattern, so maybe you don't actually feel like everything is a chore. It's just it's just an auto. It's just like fault yeah guys, I'm like I am so annoyed with the fact that I have to like fly to Hawaii take take vacation like who am I? What is that by the way? I don't like you fly to a different island, you can't drive yeah. This is exactly like you being a winner yeah. I know this why the rest of the world hates us now, first of all, yeah, but also look we're we're. Definitely one of the things I I was hoping to accomplish in the movie- was getting people to talk about the the struggle of choosing a path in this case being funny right and then, learning along the way, what you do and don't like about it ultimately and so you're either, planing or your your sharing, because someone asked so maybe less complaining,
but share when someone asks yeah sounds no fun like we need to focus on me for a little while because it is it's ok that fucking things push you off and they annoy the piss out of you. I think that's part of the human condition also yeah, and You have some in your life. Who cares about you? They want to help you also there maybe she's going to be you because you said when I say something's a short bed bugs the piss out of her. Maybe the the future of this relationship. Is you you finding a place to oh? She knows this annoys me. You know what I mean No, I has knows this only yeah. I know I know I I've I've, I've, I've corrected the ship, it's fine! It's! I think, but there's been a
evolution right, you're, aware of it. Of course, I don't want to bomb everybody out with my annoying complaining about things. People shouldn't be complaining about it, yeah. Well, that's good yeah, but it it. Interesting that there I mean. You dance around this a little bit in the documentary that you know there's there's such a fine line between MS, I mean like real mental health where Dana Gould, king about I melted down on stage and I had to leave the club. Bamford said I'd is in a psych ward. You know an hearing about you know Lenny Bruce losing his fucking mind at a certain point. It is really really that fine line between you. So there is visible clown, an like. Oh, no, there's. Actually this person- and you only need help, yeah and I think you'll find that in every profession, in terms of some are
are dealing with are on antidepressants. You know so that Another reason why I wanted to show the range of experiences and not just focus on on the, chemically imbalanced. Well, I love what Penn Jillette said about Everyone has these problems, so it's just that it's called show business, so you're showing people what problems are everyone. These are human. You know, but I do feel like performers are particularly sensitive and and particularly prone? Why that's one of the things I wanted to? I think it's part. The package. I think the thing that the thing that you too, it is part of the the whatever the broken thing yeah. It's all. It's all part of the This is too much of a coincidence, yeah, it's too much of a coincidence that that many people would be like yeah. You know, I'm I'm anxious depressed socially awkward. I mean like, if you really, if you took, sociologist, and and had them breakdown everyone's profile
that you would see so many bizarre similarities and probably things that you wouldn't even like you wouldn't even think like. Oh, you know a large number of them drink pineapple juice. Like I bet, you would find weird similarities across the board like Freakonomics sort of yeah. I think we are a lot of them are shown an opportunity to express their misery, whether it's painting, songwriting or or perform, you're shown a window load. You see in television or whatever the media is someone expressing pain and and you are gravitationally pulled. If that's a thing to that opportunity to express so to say, people are freaking. You know almost pre destined to be in the arts, the performing arts who suffer from misery and Dupree
I think they see it as an outlet. I think they said, like Maria Bamford talks about being in a psych ward, she really also talks about the ability, opportunity to go on stage and talk about it for the first own it to own it. An then she says in the film freed her to talk about it in her own life more freely because she first talked about it with stranger. Yeah right and she I love how she says the first time we do have a shaky voice, singing you know and about the tenth time she's saying you're in a psych or you know, as you do yeah, and that's just the evolution of comfort. So I think there's a gravitational pull towards at the outlet that the performing arts represents to people who are miserable so where Matt used complain about being in a studio apartment and having no life show. Business gave him the I to complain about going to Hawaii right, like yard,
come early, it's ridiculous. I mean really securing that complain about all the really great stuff. Was that the social? That's just in the customer number on that? Let's just see you in the Reddit thread already through their and that's where it is now open. But I I do think that it's also you know you. People who are more artistically inclined were creative people are, I think, automatically more sensitive because you have to be sort of difficult to the world. To then re express those things, inarticulateness distinct way that requires certain personality type- and I think you are condition yourself to be more sensitive as you go along because you are you going search of the misery and what sparked up about this, and what am I like you the machine like powers itself, it's a self sustaining. If we could figure out how to figure out, power of the earth off of comedian ego like sorry, you mean earth right or yeah. I think it's,
This movie were about clinical depression and suicide. Then we would have talked to a lot of civilians, so called non professionals about their inability to find of the venue too, to complain a venue to have the conversation, the stifled, by an inability to speak about right. So the v performers who had clinical depression or chemical imbalance in their existence prior just found an outlet to express and to talk and to get better there. That way and I think the majority of people who suffer from chemical imbalance and clinical depression do not, and that might be the thing that stands between them and feeling better on occasion is just being able to talk about it,
well, that's interesting! You know when you say you know here say Jimmy say that Fallon say that it's like a drug. I always hear people compare it to the crack. You know, but maybe it's actually more like uhm a riddle in or you know like, maybe it's more like a medical drug and it's Type of personality is creating that Kemah releasing their brain to calm down like that you're self medicating with performing so that so that it's not like a street drug. It's more like you know a prescribed drug and that's that's how we deal with that. An actual endorphins released, as I said yes, when you're on stage, so that drug is technically a calming comforting. Wonderful cashmere, sweater! Yep!
So the idea that you could go back up there and feel that way again other than Matt who just can't wait for it to be over, but I feel that way as soon as soon as can you put on that Kashmir and you go home, zip it up, yeah baby, so so so yeah. So I look if you're a comedy and if you, if you love it's one of the reasons I included filmmakers. Also an actress who I did I why people should know what's in the film is not a bummer like it's a gets really from F, I s leading and funny and interesting. It's not like. We live so soon. I'm a comic like it's really. I cut it to be a comedy. Yeah does your choice. I made an editing to be honest with you it people said Kevin. Why isn't your opinion? Why aren't we from you. You know, and I say movies. My opinion I had seventy hours to choose from it shows everyone of these sentences very fucking carefully and for ten months for these. Ninety four minutes of sentences got put together. So the film is my opinion and, quite frankly,
I had to decide early on. Is this going to be a comedy with inside and drama in the occasion or gonna, be a drama with comedic relief and I went comedy. I cut it to be funny. Yeah and the joy for me was funny. People can't help it be funny when they're talking about misery and just to let people know it getting back to your one of your first comments about for enjoyment of watching it with family, knowing that in the film you talk about masturbating in a church. First of all, there was a this hasn't come out in the press, interviews at all they among all the questions. One of them was what's the fourth thing about you you'd. Rather it will not know and the reason it was the fourth, if it's not obvious that I wanted people to a find it kind of funny as a topic and be, I didn't want to
I hate being asked. What is your favorite? This one is the one thing, but you know forget the apex right and if it's not because it did there's nothing but pressure on what is the one thing? What is your favorite movie? You is my favorite movie, so the fourth thing that you'd rather people not know about you now you're not only moving down the list, but you also finding something off the beaten track for sure. But frankly it you know, it isn't heinous necessarily is just so they most of them are comical as why Matt watching the film says, I met a girl, crying college and the really long pause, and then he says I feel bad on a beautiful. So you don't hear that Shin. Nor is it a title card in a chapter. What is the fourth thing? No one, you would rather know and know about you, but it provided these sort of comedic relief valves that were personal right, yeah didn't have to do with putting in your ten thousand hours or urine
answers, or You know losing your amateur step. They just had to do with something along the journey that to me so comedic opportunity. And I really was, well, you know, I remember very specifically one of the reasons I told that story. I don't really care. You know it's fine it, but you told the to a camera. So clearly you don't care yeah. I mean I care, I don't care at the same time, but I was also I feel like I just had a conversation. Like for Biglia who is talking about like you. I really go to this place where I'm not comfortable and that's where I write from- and I was like it's a really great because that's human, like where you're, uncomfortable it's human. That's discomfort is very universe shared experience, thing and, of course, there's a fine line between what is share discomfort or the like you, but really was for me
You know I mean I was. I was a teenager. I went to Catholic School, I was you know, had tip full teenager hormones, but at the same time it really was a spiritual experiment. Where I was like want to know. What am I allowed to do this or not? If something terrible going to happen, it was genuinely of religious sociological
and aren't you a little grateful that I forced you to also share that it happened in the bathroom and not where people's imagination had you doing this seriously 'cause? If you don't clarify that when you just say I masturbate in the church, I promise you. Ninety two out of one hundred people see you on the filter. Well, I did slaughter some animals in the bathroom and I use their blood as lube, but other than that it was a completely normal teenage experience that too quick. But I know that's why I said animals, but I think a lot of the a major uncomfortable tell it and that's why it did make me a comfortable telephone. I'm not sorry that I did because it's you know everyone does which running up stuff. It was funny and I've been I've, been sort of struggling with this one bit like once I get into the bit. It's fine all the jokes work throughout the bit,
It's about how I, when I was young, I had sex with a blow up, doll, sure and whenever I said on stage, not one time is anyone ever laughed. There was just like, like it's one step too far for them yeah and I've been trying to be okay like okay. This is a piece that you're gonna start out, weird for you comfortable, but just go, but just follow me and then it'll be ok and it always ends up it always end. Sure, but I think your earlier point comic on stage for an hour, is you know, So much of us live in our in just this internal life, where we've constructed this picture of the world. That's very us! Centric and people. Do because of something we did or this, and it gets very you know and so being on stage is getting out of that for an hour and then, when you go back when you're done with your show you're back in your own head and that's a depressing place there, you go unless you're mad, my
That's your Matt Myron! It's wonderful in here yeah, because when you're in your own thoughts you love listening to the complaints are agree: you're, fine, you're, swell right, Maine, that is far to drive in LA me. I wouldn't live in the valley. Either says Matt Notes, Guide, guys lost, like hundred some pounds. Right works out. Two hundred one hundred pounds got a great, almost wife, yeah couple great job yeah know like. Is it think things are alright and by the Volvo in Torrance. So when I need to get it fixed, I gotta drive to fun. Torrent. I know. Maybe you don't yes it I gotta go to that dealership. They have a five year thing or whatever, whatever bull should I take it back? Your life is shit,
telling me that I could do this at any Volvo dealership. Yes, I am so those part of the deal for thirty seven dollars. You can get task rabbit to driving, not even a full time assistant. There's a map. On your phone called task rabbit and they would actually drive your car and get it fixed and drive it back to you from about thirty seven dollars and I'm just picking that number over Charlie, but it ain't much more. How you feel now, I'm here to cure guys. I can't wait to do this show on Friday at the Wilbur theater. I see you there, yeah you'll be at the Wilbur, but if not task rabbit should be- it's clearly
or you or you could you know, there's also forty eight other or you could get malware. Is that chore donkey where you can make everything like it's the picture of your sure, your book really! Is you go? That's your special that your book are going to do another special. In any point, I don't know I don't know I it's so daunting to me to too put together a new eighty minutes from now. I can call an hour of what I would be thrilled with. To be honest with you, I I yeah it's daunting. It's daunting the it I have spent. My life, you know, since age, ten doing stand up comedy so now, at this point more respect and reverence for not being able to say I a kit and taking a year off to put an act together, which is what I think for me, it would probably take
um and I've never been able to use writers, but that's not a possibility, but when I was at the Tribeca Film Festival just this last week, I'm doing all the press and stuff already laying came to war screenings that and I have c center and just happen a out front. I said Oh geez, I wish we'd known each other prior, you would have been on the poster, also given your own sharing? They He was doing a set at the comedy. Which is a half a block away, and you know my stand up experience with San Francisco. It wasn't New York, so I, when I finally got to New York, someone said no to catch catch, a rising star and that's where I worked out and then Caroline's on Broadway became the place, I would actually work and I missed the whole comedy cellar experience and when I went there after the uh screening of the film and to see already lying to his set. It was the first time I walked in the comedy cellar. So how ridiculous is that at this point in my life and then
as he walked me from the little club around the corner to the bigger room, I got both experiences and man. I felt like instantly booking of forty, tour just from that nineteen minutes yeah. So it is forever in you know. You earlier today during interview so now you're acting and directing blade blade. What is your other favorite question, and I just involuntarily came out of me? being on stage taking the audience for ride, if you're choosing will always be the greatest high, I will know Editing of this film was an amazing education and being in that back, I felt more alive than I had in years being able to someone, the
assemblage of that time, right, but still yeah being on stage, and just you know it's the ultimate creative experience. By far what's the fourth weirdest place, you've ever masturbated fourth, I'm in my trailer on the set at Warner Brothers, while shooting the tv show mom, weird every trailer? You do not want to go to the trailers. No, no! Well, because I was shooting a show called mom
Maybe that's where you want to explore some stuff. Maybe I don't know every time I was in the trailer I just had. I saw my name in the word mom and it didn't hurt that I had a photo of my mom over the toilet. So so really they didn't just kill you off the show. They stopped me from masturbating in the trailer they were on to main I didn't realize until just now, yeah well Kevin Pollak, uh, I will see you in at midnight soon, because they're gonna go you're gonna, be on the show yeah first time with mixed in time to time, roads and Eddie Izzard intimidated beyond only it's going to be a good. The heavy hitter show I am I need help so you'll be and then hi and thanks for downloading the movie crest. Of course I was very happy to. I was very happy to on the I tunes the Amazon video on demand. I love comedy great, it's a it's, a rat, a box. You can go ahead and watch a movie and it flies by two because it your
constantly seeing people that you love and it did not feel like. Ninety four minutes pace is something I really had to focus on. Yeah well, man well done, and I hope you get to see you again, not my dining room, I know well, I hope you stay happy but maintain just enough misery to specific funny. Thank you. Enjoy your burrito everyone now leaving dot com enjoy your burrito
Transcript generated on 2019-11-05.