I go to New York to see live shows, not movies.

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Gad Elmaleh

Gad Elmaleh

Profession: Humorist
Nationality: French

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Eventually I was saying to myself, maybe it would be better, instead of trying to become an American comedian in France, to mix those two styles and those two genres. Because of course it's good to be efficient and sharp, and to have a joke every twenty seconds, but it can be a little cold and dry.

My dream is not Hollywood, but to perform my act in English to 30 people in a Soho comedy club, to show New Yorkers what they look like from the French point of view.

It's liberating to perform in another language. There are some subjects I would never talk about in French, where they see me as a public figure, that I talk about in English.

I don't feel any need to play the role of the clown. In my private life I take a break from humor.

Americans don't like puns and plays on words, which is totally opposite in the comedy world to France or even Italy and Germany.

I did movies because I was flattered and for money and because I wanted to kiss Sophie Marceau.

After New York, Chicago is my favorite city. It's just this great mix of Europe and America. The friends I have there are smart and witty and fun.

I love coming to New York. I think I'm going to come really often here. I need to - for the show, for the comedy. I want to do the shows here and have a beer and hang out with the comedians.

There's so many funny things to say about being with Charlotte. I've worked on a few bits about it - not to be indiscreet but because the shock of culture and values is so interesting.

I was in a steak house once, and someone proposed. I was so embarrassed. The woman started crying, and I thought, 'She was just proposed to in a steak house - I'd be crying, too.'

America is where standup comedy was born. It's the standard. So you want to go and do your job where this is the mecca of what you do.

That's only in America. We don't have French doors in France.

Everywhere I go in America, when they learn I'm from France, the first thing they ask me is if I'm a huge Jerry Lewis fan. I've never been able to figure that out.

Journalists ask me, 'Why don't you ever talk about sex in your performances?' True, I don't talk about sex - not in my personal life and not in my professional life. This is modesty.