An Exclusive Interview with Patton OswaltShare
Patton Oswalt has been headlining at comedy clubs all over the United States since 1996, as well as appearing in his own standup specials on Comedy Central and HBO. He was chosen as Entertainment Weekly’s “It” comedian in 2002. You’ve seen him on Late Night with Conan O’Brien, Seinfeld and NewsRadio and films “Starsky & Hutch,” “Man on the Moon” and “Magnolia.”
Oswalt recently completed filming in an upcoming drama titled Big Fan, written and directed by former The Onion editor-in-chief and The Wrestler writer Robert D. Siegel. Oswalt portrays Paul, an eccentric parking lot attendant and a “big fan” of the New York Giants, who attempts to follow and meet his favorite player but ends up dealing with consequences after a violent confrontation between the two.
Also, earlier this year, Patton recorded his third comedy album and a new Comedy Central special at the Lisner Auditorium in Washington D.C. It will be called My Weakness is Strong and will be released on August 25, 2009.
A FIRESIDE CHAT WITH FROMAN (without the fireside). . .
FROMAN: Big Fan is your first lead role in a film, how does it feel to carry a film on your own, especially in such a dramatic dark comedy directed & Written by Robert Siegel who’s hot off the success of the Wrestler?
PATTON: Like I’ve got a sack of walnuts on my back and they each weigh as much as ten battleships. But they sing to me, so it’s okay.
FROMAN: I’ve seen you play NYC a couple years ago (at the late Mo’pitkins, RIP) and your stand up routine is one of the best. I also love when you pop up in movies and shows because you often steal the scene. What do you like better, acting or stand up?
PO: Acting has better craft services, but stand-up usually has better mixed drinks.
FROMAN: Big Fan is about a die hard Giants fan who has his life ruined after his favorite player beats him up. I met you at the bar after your stand up show and you were super nice but have you ever had your love of something completely tainted after you found out the artist/actor/director/etc was a douche bag?
PO: Angela Landsbury stabbed me when I tried to get her to sign my Bedknobs and Broomsticks poster. Otherwise, everyone’s been very sweet.
FROMAN: You’re one of my favorite guests on Doug Benson’s I Love Movies pod cast, partially because you’re such a movie nerd. Where did your love for movies come from and what are you excited to see coming out soon? Whats the one DVD you own and couldn’t live without?
PO: It comes from an ancient gypsy curse that can only be removed if I defeat ten false men in punching combat. And I could not live without my “How to Operate Your Sanyo DVD Player” instructional DVD.
FROMAN: Most comedians draw from their past whether it be good or bad for inspiration in their stand up, what got you into comedy and what are some of your inspirations?
PO: Our Lord and savior Jesus Christ got me into comedy. And I am inspired by my complete lack of any sort of faith.
FROMAN: Have you had any horrible hecklers at your shows? How do you typically deal with that, and if you have any, whats your best heckler story?
PO: Every single one my my shows has ended within five minutes of me starting by people screaming at me to stop. I deal with it through alcohol consumption.
FROMAN: Whats the one joke/situation you wish you could take back because it just bombed (on stage or in real life)?
PO: Some well-intentioned but tasteless limericks at my grandfather’s funeral.
FROMAN: How did you get your start as a comedian/TV Show writer and what advice would you give kids out there that want to get started?
PO: I applied at the TV Writer Store. Drop by — they’ve got free coffee!
FROMAN: What bands are you listening to right now and who’s putting on a kick ass live show?
PO: I’m enjoying S.O.S.O.S., which is a band from Spain which covers Erasure covering Abba. Best live performer is still Leon Redbone, but I wish he’d cut down on the pyrotechnics and lasers.
FROMAN: You’re a married family man now, but as women like to lie and say they are attracted to a man with a sense of humor, back in the day did you ever score some ladies from the crowd after your shows?
PO: If I did, it’s been stricken from the fossil record.
BIG FAN HITS THEATERS 8/28