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April 2008

April 04, 2008


I'm backstage at the Orange Peel, which is in Asheville, North Carolina. Showalter is on the stage yelling at the audience as usual. He's literally up there, and the quote that's coming out of his mouth right now is, "You fucking dick! Don't tell me what to do!" He's obviously endearing himself to them. Most of Showalter's act these days consists of the audience yelling at him and him responding. Is it funny? To him, yes.

As for me, I'm probably going to go on in about forty minutes. At that time, I will probably talk about my movie bombing, soft serve ice cream, and Christian rock. I might also get into strangers who don't find me funny and I will probably conclude with an old reliable - "A Series of Letters to the First Girl I Ever Fingered."

Last night we were in Covington, Kentucky, which seems to be an appendage of Cincinnati, Ohio. It looked like a nice place, but the biggest laugh I got of the night was when I said that Covington, Kentucky looked like a nice place. Roars. I guess that goes to show what the locals think of their hometown. I asked why they lived there if they hated it so much. They told me they stayed for the booze. That's a good sign. I had to explain to them that they've got booze in other places, too, a concept they didn't quite believe. Nice people. Good people. Drunk people.

April 02, 2008

Another True, Humiliating Story From What Passes As My Career

Several months after my son was born in 2001 or  2002, I got a very exciting telephone call. Would I be interested in being in the new Pixar movie? Since I was not yet fully immersed in the world of children's entertainment, I was not really aware of Pixar products. All I knew was that every time a new Pixar movie came out, it was a big deal and made hundreds of millions of dollars, which to an actor translates to large royalty checks. I did not know how much money one could stand to make in residuals from something like that but a friend of a friend was in some successful animated movie or another, and I can remember that he routinely received checks for tens of thousands of dollars. So that sounded pretty good. Also, animated movies take a long time to put together. I figured that by the time this was done, my son would just be old enough so that I could take him to the movies, point to whatever animated creature I was portraying and say "That's Daddy!" in a voice just loud enough so that several other surrounding fathers could hear. As a new father, I was constantly trying to figure out ways to make my son love me since just being his father was obviously not enough. Even at six months, he was already contemptuous of me.

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April 01, 2008

Number 13 With a Bullet!

"Run Fatboy Run" opened this weekend to mixed reviews, and while the reviews may not have been unanimous, the public's reaction was; they stayed away in droves. We opened at number 13. I think we narrowly beat out "Norbit" this week, which has been open for three years. Why people didn't want to see a movie starring a largely unknown British comedian running a marathon I don't know, but I will say this: if you haven't seen it yet (and if you're anything like the country as a whole, you haven't), check it out. It's a very fun, sweet movie. In fact, it's so good, that I can recall seeing only one review with the headline, "Run, Don't Walk, Away From This Movie."

Yes, it's been a banner week for me.

On the plus side, I am feeling much better. My Ebola seems to have passed, although my voice is kind of ragged, which may or may not make me sound even sexier than normal. Squeakier? Definitely. Sexier? Not sure.

I know I still haven't reported on the premiere. Suffice to say it was fun and I met the "Flight of the Conchord" guys, who seemed genuinely nice and even more genuinely New Zealandish. Embarrassing story: before the movie started I introduced myself to Jermaine, the one with the lips, by saying, "Hi, I'm Michael. I wrote this movie." He said something something like, "Great," which is pretty much what I would have said had our roles been reversed. Then I said, "I'm a big fan. I just saw your movie... uh..." and then I couldn't think of the name of the movie. Chances are he knew which movie I was talking about, since I think he's only been in one ("Eagles Vs. Shark") but it's embarrassing to introduce yourself by saying that you are a big fan of their work and then being unable to actually name the work of which you are a big fan. He was very gracious about it. By that, I mean he quickly walked away from me.

Other fun memories: Thandie Newton having no idea who I am, David Schwimmer introducing me as the guy who "wrote the first draft" of the screenplay, and having to listen to the publicist explain to the paparazzi who I was every five minutes. On the plus side: free mini-burgers at the party!!!