This career is a relentless hustle because Hollywood is crowded with too many smart, talented people pursuing the same dream and the same pool of entertainment investment dollars. And unlike in law or medicine, there are no college degrees required - no barriers to entry.

Jay Chandrasekhar

Jay Chandrasekhar

Profession: Comedian
Nationality: American

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There used to be lots of legitimate independent distributors: Fox Searchlight, Miramax, Lionsgate, Warner Independent, Focus Features, Paramount Vantage, Picturehouse and Fine Line. Most of them have closed.

There has been a stigma around letting movies be seen on home screens on the same day as theatrical screens. Universal said they were going to do it with 'Tower Heist,' but they backed off when challenged by the theater owners. I understand where the theater owners are coming from on big studio movies.

Look at the opening sequence of 'The Blues Brothers,' which starts at the prison. The way it was filmed, it does not look like a comedy. I thought that was great.

I would never be comfortable with an edited name. I have never hidden the fact that I am of Indian origin.

I've never thrown a javelin. What kind of sport is that? It's hilarious.

We can't make movies without scripts, and there's no cost to writing a script, so my advice to newcomers is do it yourself: Write your own script, shoot your shorts, edit your shorts.

When I started, there were no Indians on television or films, except for Sir Ben Kingsley. I was an actor in high school, college, and I played leads. And when I graduated, I knew that I couldn't go to Hollywood and audition for shows or films. I could try, but where was the evidence that it was going to happen?

We hoped to get a TV show, and we almost did, but 'The State' beat us out for this MTV show. So because they were there, and 'SNL' and 'Kids in the Hall' were there, we thought, 'Let's go try to do what Python did, and instead, let's make movies.'

The first thing I do in the editing room is the 'radio edit,' where you listen to the dialogue and don't even look at the visuals. The rhythm, the music of the comedy, has to work.

Philosophy teaches you to think big.

People always ask us, 'Hey, is there going to be a 'Beerfest 2'?' I don't know if I have another beer joke in me.

I am convinced that tough villains help make a comedy sparkle because they provide a contrast to the funny guys.

'Super Troopers' did well but not crazy-well theatrically. But it did so well after that it - in ancillary markets - that it became impossible for us to get away from it. We'd get pulled over by cops who would thank us and then would let us go.

Making an independent film is so great because you're your boss. And you have to be disciplined. You know? Because there's nobody telling you anything. But you have to kinda, you know, if you have an instinct to do something, you do it. There's nobody to run it by.