Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Could be why I went I am nuts about the new documentary about Scientology that’s running on HBO: Going Clear. It featured some of the disgraced former leaders badmouthing the hell out of the religion. Including why it should never have been recognized as a religion in the first place. And they seduced and keep a hold on Tom Cruise.
The Scientology headquarters, above, looms over Franklin Ave. in Los Angeles, across the street from my personal religion’s headquarters: Upright Citizens Brigade, where I’ve performed improv. Everyone who parks on the streets alongside the Scientology center will attest that it gives them the heebie-jeebies.
And once, I was inside the place. For an audition. The folks there created a protein workout drink (they really know how to print money) and were casting for a host to promote the stuff. The actor’s fee was appropriately insane: $10,000 for three-days work. Who was I to say no.
Sitting in the lobby, I watched celebrities check in (it’s also a hotel for them) until two super perky blondes brought me into a room to audition. I’ve never had anyone smile wider and love my work so much. I was terrified.
I didn’t book the job, which was okay, because my only motivation was to get the hell out of there without being snared and hung upside down by a spring noose trap.
The documentary is on all week on HBO, including twice tomorrow. It’s as unsettling – and fascinating – as you can imagine. You really gotta see it.
Monday, March 30, 2015
Saturday, March 28, 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
But the drooling? I don’t know who he’s emulating. And he’s a big man (look at that doozey on his paw) so I’ve gotta make the same sacrifice as many dog owners: low-grade couch. Mine dates back to my older brother’s fraternity house. (I’m not kidding.) I put an expensive cover on it, but it’s always rumpled.
But now I’m in pre-production for a new comedy short, which I’m shooting in my place, and it involves a couch. So it’s time to finally buy a new one. A nice one. And because it’s a prop, I just might expense it.
So, West Virginia football fans, I know how much you bumpkins love burning couches after victories. Stop by my place and it’s yours.
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Yeah, a comedy short I wrote with my friend Chad took this long to shoot because it had so many setups. And now that the director and I took a look at all the footage, we realized we have to reshoot much of it.
It was tough to swallow, but then I realized I’m glad we maintain such high standards and don’t just finish something and put it on the net.
The entertainment business can really test your resilience. Good thing it’s so awesome.
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
Wild Tales is a collection of six short films by Argentinian writer/director Damian Szifron, all with the theme of revenge. Each story has an element of violence that induces serious anxiety, because they’re all based very real circumstances. You’ll never engage in road rage again.
The final short is my favorite, featuring a bridezilla moment of biblical proportions. But they all will blow your mind. Wild Tales was nominated for an Oscar for best foreign film this past year. (I can’t imagine how it didn’t win.) Damian Szifron is a genius, not only with his writing, but superbly inventive direction. (It’s been said never to attempt to shoot party scenes, and he just went ahead and whaled on the wedding reception. Wait’ll you see it.) But don’t wait – take my word for it. It’s in theaters now and I still can’t get it out of my head. Go see it.