Me trying to buck up Andy Daly in the third episode of Comedy Central’s “Review.” The first episode premieres tonight at 10. I’m not in the first one but watch anyway, this isn’t just about me.
Forrest struggles through a giant pile of steaming flapjacks at a local diner. Watch Review Thursdays 10/9c, and see more Review here: http://on.cc.com/1mdsVyc
Important News! Today is National Pancake Day. Don’t ask why or what that is or what it means. What answer could possibly be satisfactory? Just watch and pass along this clip from Review, in honor of The Pancake.
I’m in this.
David Avallone and I co-directed this video for the NY singer-songwriter Drazy Hoops. A tale of urban heartbreak starring Ben Williams, James Hannaham and Maria Dizzia (the blueberries lady from “Louie”). Featuring artwork by Tumblr fave Sara Pocock. Also a cat. Enjoy.
Years ago, sometime in the late ’90s, I auditioned for a one-act play in NY. It was a light comedy about a playwright who had a troll who lived in his closet who wrote his plays for him. My audition for the role of the the troll went very well. I thought the character suited my strengths; I took pride in having a corner on wry, verbal oddballs. The producers loved me and I seemed very close to getting it.
I didn’t get it. I went to see the play when it opened (it was part of an evening of one-acts) and when the troll made his entrance, a young Philip Seymour Hoffman walked out. Or rather, crawled out, pulling his big body across the floor, deep voice bellowing, playing this light comedy character with a physical intensity and emotional depth that was nowhere near what I had done in the audition. It hadn’t even occurred to me that you could play the character this way. This actor was taking this troll, this secretive, brilliant, deformed outsider…seriously.
I remember thinking “Holy shit. Well…I see why this guy got the part.”
I’ve thought many times through the years about being blown away by that performance. About what a lesson it was in committing, digging deep, raising the stakes, going further. Philip Seymour Hoffman kept doing that. He never stopped doing it. He was incapable of not doing it.
I’ve reflected on so many of his performances through the years but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve thought about that troll. I’ll keep thinking about it.
James and I watch the one where the student council decides to have a date auction to raise money for cheerleading uniforms, and Lisa starts reading Tolstoy in order to win the heart of a snobby intellectual.
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I’m the guest on the new episode of April Richardson’s “Go Bayside,” a podcast about the television series “Saved by the Bell.”
It’s my annual posting of The James Urbaniak Christmas Song! I recorded it three years ago and some of its references are already dated but its overall message is as timeless as Christmas itself. Produced and co-written by Jonathan Dinerstein.
Go line by line.
I was eighteen years old and working at a convenience store in New Jersey when this issue came out. One evening a guy came in and asked for Playboy (men’s magazines lived behind the counter). I produced the issue, he opened it to the centerfold, made an approving grunt and then closed the magazine, returned it to me and left without buying anything. I remember this incident because I thought it was funny and because I found it notable that Bernadette Peters was on the cover.