I remember going with my mom to a random garage sale as a kid and thinking what a cool treasure hunt that whole world was. Only to transition as an adult to think, 'What a gross place that really is.'
I think a lot of the instincts you have doing comedy are really the same for doing drama, in that it's essentially about listening. The way I approach comedy, is you have to commit to everything as if it's a dramatic role, meaning you play it straight.
A lot of people have gotten into comedy because of certain influences in their lives or events that were painful, and I really have wracked my brain to figure it out. I pretty much have had a normal childhood. Maybe it was too normal.
I've had moments in my life when I've thought if I wasn't acting, if I wasn't doing what I do and I had a career in the private sector and I didn't have a family, that I do have some tendencies where I could really kind of have a monastic existence and be okay with it.
I think with the success of, like, every summer there has been a couple R-rated comedies that have done so well; I think it is so nice to see that people are turning out to see these movies, and it doesn't seem to be as big a stigma with the studios anymore.
I always just forced myself to do crazy things in public. In college I would push an overhead projector across campus with my pants just low enough to show my butt. Then my friend would incite the crowd to be like, 'Look at that idiot!' That's how I got over being shy.
I think anyone who has, you know, is in any sort of artistic pursuit, kind of goes up and down with the way they feel about their work. And I, for the most part, am pretty happy person. But, yeah. I go through definite periods of time where I'm not funny. I'm not good. I'm - I don't feel original.
Saturday Night Live is such a comedy boot camp in a way, because you get to work with so many different people who come in to host the show and you get thrown into so many situations and learn how to think on your feet, so filmmaking actually feels slow, in a good way.
In junior high P.E., I was way too shy to take a shower in front of the other kids. It was a horribly awkward time - body hair, odors... So I'd go from my sweaty shirt back into my regular clothes and have to continue the day.
I don't know about living on an automatic pilot, but I've had times where I've decided to just test myself and my mettle, and for no good reason other than it's what life is. Even before I was acting, I had, like, one day in high school I decided to just show them my pajamas, just for no good reason.
I've got no dark secrets, I wasn't beaten up, my parents were kind to me and there was a low crime rate where we lived. Maybe that's where the comedy comes from, as some sort of reaction to the safe, boring suburbs.
Oftentimes, even as a little kid, I would get up before anyone else. My brother would still be sleeping, my mom would still be sleeping, so I would literally play 'Monopoly' by myself. I would play board games; I would do things by myself.
I always find it actually funny that the analysis is that the characters I play in comedies are the manchild, the adolescent, characters that refuse to grow up. And yet, if you look back in the history of comedy all the way back to the Marx brothers, that's a big part of comedy.
All you have in comedy, in general, is just going with your instincts. You can only hope that other people think that what you think is funny is funny. I don't have an answer but I just try to plough straight ahead.
I left 'Saturday Night Live' without a film to go to, and I'd filmed 'Old School' while I was in my last season of the show, and that hadn't come out yet. I was a free agent, in a way, but I knew it was time to leave the show and test the water.