Last Updated: 5:00 AM, May 27, 2007
Posted: 5:00 AM, May 27, 2007
LOUIS C.K. (formerly Louis Szekely - really, can you blame the guy?) is a can-of-whupass type comedian: open up at your own risk. He's a family-guy funnyman dead-set on unloading on the hypocrisy of modern life, using his wife and kids as fodder for some shocking laughs. And his new HBO DVD, "Shameless," is a good place to get a taste of his explosive brand of humor.
Although his short-lived HBO sitcom, "Lucky Louie," was not as auspicious as its title, it showed that he's not afraid to play around with the genre, filming it before a live audience and bluntly depicting working-class family life. As the son of a father with both Hungarian Jewish and Mexican Catholic roots, this New York-born, Massachusett's-raised, no-bullsh--t artist certainly ain't a stranger to it.
Q: So you're from Beantown - a comedy hotbed!
A: Yeah, but I grew up on the wrong side of the tracks, in Newton, and our types took care of the lawns of all the rich [people] who lived there. I grew up in one of those classic three-story double-deckers, a two-family house.
Q: How'd you get your start?
A: I loved Bill Cosby, Richard Pryor, George Carlin, and just listened to their records over and over again, and then started hitting the clubs. I didn't go to college - just right out into the scene.
Q:Lines like "My kid's an asshole" are so shocking because they're the antithesis of what the modern father is supposed to be. Do you feel like you're telling secret guy tales, representing a repressed group?
A: I think there's way more of that type of thinking out there than people want to believe, and I'm channeling a lot from other people, borrowing from their experiences. I've had soccer moms come up and tell me they can relate when I say that I want to throw my baby in the trash.
Q: Is your wife in the biz?
A: She's a painter. No, she's not in the business. But what I do puts a roof over her head. I do try to be as hard on myself as I am on her and the kids. For example, in one of my bits, I defend her right to not give me oral sex. I know the reality with my wife is that we're in a partnership and working together at building a life - but that s--t's just not funny.
Q: Which of your jokes gets the biggest reaction?
A: Definitely the "Suck a bag of d---s!" one. [He had cut off a fellow driver in L.A., and this was the confounding retort he got. C.K., in "Shameless," proceeds to hysterically ponder the proper procedure for this, what the bag would look like - a crisp satchel of baguettes or a plastic sack filled with floppy chicken parts? - and the order in which the sucking should take place].
Q: Do you wake up in morning with a joke fully formed, or do you have to work on it?
A: Generally what happens is, I'll be talking to someone and something will strike me, and I will put it in the back of my mind to pull it out next time I'm on stage. Sometimes it comes out perfectly formed, and the audience loves it; other times it needs a lot of work and may end up being folded into another joke at a later date - but I generally recognize the hint of a good routine when I hear it.
Q: You're friends with Chris Rock and have written and produced a couple of movies with him, most recently "I Think I Love My Wife." He's so hysterical onstage, but his films fall a bit flat. What's up with that?
A: He's learning to make movies as he makes them. There's about two black roles out there, and Denzel generally gets them. For someone like Tom Hanks, there are about 4,000 roles - it's a lot easier for us white guys. Chris Rock has only made two movies, and he never went to film school, never studied it, and he's just going to get better and better.
Q: If you were just handed billions by some Hollywood mogul, what would you do?
A: Well, first of all, I would redo "Lucky Louie." It wasn't that dealing with HBO was tough, those people are awesome, just awesome. I would just like another shot at it, to get it right.
Then, with the rest of the money, I would do a bunch of little projects. I've seen what happens when people out in L.A. get too much money for something - it becomes a self-indulgent mess.
Birthday: Sept. 12, 1967
What's in a name? His family pronounces their surname Szekely as [se'-ke], so during his grade-school years he resorted to "C.K." as an easy way to get his name pronounced almost correctly.
Silence is the enemy:. "When I am in a hotel, and I turn off the lights and the TV, I just freak out. I turn the TV back on and don't get any sleep."
Favorite TV shows: "All in the Family" and "Wondershowzen."
"Battlestar Gallactica" vs. "Land of the Lost"? "'Land of the Lost,' for sure; every single episode had them saving themselves by blocking that dinosaur's mouth with a stick. If only that worked in real life: 'Oh, no. Our car insurance is due, and they are about to cut off our coverage quick. Will, grab a giant stick!'"
- Fran Drescher Disses President Obama, Plans to Run For Congress Wed, 24 Nov 2010 18:56:41 GMT
- EXCLUSIVE: Lindsay Lohan’s Team Says She Wasn't Fired From 'Inferno' Fri, 26 Nov 2010 05:07:33 GMT
- Black Eyed Peas to Perform During Super Bowl's Halftime Fri, 26 Nov 2010 00:48:31 GMT
- DAILY 411: Paris Hilton Fires Back at Fake Hair Lawsuit Wed, 24 Nov 2010 18:11:58 GMT
- REVIEW: 'Burlesque' Not Just Bad, It's 'Showgirls' Bad Wed, 24 Nov 2010 19:30:48 GMT