Interview: Jim Breuer "And Laughter for All"

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No longer a metal head, a stoner or a Goat Boy, SNL's Jim Breuer deals with being a middle aged suburban dad in his first comedy special for Epix. In HD.
Photo Credit: Epix
November 26th, 2013

Stand up comedy is one of the hardest professions in the entertainment business and with over 25 years in the business Jim Breuer knows what it takes.  Many of you will remember him from movies liked “Half-Baked” and from his SNL days with skits like ‘Goatboy’.  On November 26th Jim will be releasing his new special “And Laughter For All” which was number one on Netflix last month.  Jim took time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions for us at Movie Room Reviews.

Nick Leyland from Movie Room Reviews: I just got done watching your And Laughter and laughed really hard. It's great, man.

Jim Breuer: Oh, cool, thank you. I appreciate that.

MRR: It comes out on the 26th on DVD. But it already came out last month on Netflix and did really well, right?

Jim Breuer: Yeah, number one.

MRR: That's awesome.

Jim Breuer: Most downloaded out of all their comedies.

MRR: Congratulations.

Jim Breuer: Thanks.

MRR: Well you've been doing comedy for quite a while now. How well do you think this special, And Laughter For All, will do for long time Breuer fans?

Jim Breuer: I don't exhaust my thought process in that. I used to and then I always got disappointed. Any time I put stuff out there, there's nothing I can do about it. If people love it, they love it. I think they're gonna love it. I think it's gonna respond very well with multi-generations. I think being the most downloaded on Netflix was pretty exciting. But like I said, I don't put too much thought process into that because you'd drive yourself nuts.

[chuckle]

I'm already on My New Hour. I'm touring My New Hour. I hope this thing does really well because I think it's really funny and I think it's great for metal heads and for people with families and kids, which is why I call it And Laughter For All because anyone can watch this and go, "All right, I just found something really funny in this thing," 'cause there is a lot of belly laughs in it. So I think Breuer fans are obviously gonna love it, but I think it's gonna branch out to more fans.

MRR: Well, some of the comedy in this special, like you said, revolves around family and stuff like that. For you, does comedy change as your surroundings change, like having a family or getting older?

Jim Breuer: Oh, yeah, absolutely. I mean, even My Newer Hour, I talk more about taking care of my elderly parents. I read text arguments that I had with my wife. [chuckle] They were real text arguments. So yeah, I only talk about things I know and what I can grasp and what everybody can relate to. So I've kind of always been that way. SNL and Half Baked pushed me in a different direction 'cause there was a big crowd. "Oh, he's the guy from SNL. He's the guy from Half Baked." And they really wanted that, I made good money, and I got great appeal. But as a stand up, I was always in that family world. It's just that it hasn't been exposed until recently with Let's Clear the Air a couple of years ago, and now this special, and the tour I'm doing now.

I'm on the road touring A New Hour. And I've got to say, I think this hour is pretty bone crushing. I think And Laughter For All was really bone crushing. I was killing audiences. And I think I did a great job with the DVD, but I think I stayed really consistent with what I'm doing out there now too.

MRR: I wanted to ask you because I've talked to musicians and people like this, and they're doing a lot of the same stuff every night. And I was wondering, as a comedian, how hard does that get to do the act again over and over every night?

Jim Breuer: Well, what happens is I do, do a lot of the same stuff on this tour, but what I've been finding is I elaborate a lot more. Like if you saw me, let's say, June of this tour, you would have seen some of the stuff that I'm doing now, but I've elaborated and added on a lot more, and more, and more. I never do truly the same exact stuff all the time. I may even do the same subject, but you go, "You know, I saw him only three months ago on this tour, and that subject has changed a lot since I saw him the last time." And I constantly put myself in the audiences' feet as if there's a guy watching me every three months. And even though it's the same tour, I still want to keep adding in certain areas. And so, I'm always changing. So I’d get bored to death if I'm doing the same thing after a while. Even though it's the same tour, I'm still different than I was a month ago.

MRR: And you're very animated on stage. I was wondering, 'cause you have kids now that you talk about in this, what do they think about you after they see you on stage?

Jim Breuer: You know, they're hard to figure out. They really are. They're really hard to figure out. My wife will go, "Oh my gosh, you were so funny tonight." My father and my kids never go, "Oh my God, you were hilarious." They always talk about the audience. "Oh my gosh, dad, there was this one guy who was just staring at you the whole time. He was really annoyed, but the person next to him was bowled over laughing so hard. [chuckle] I think they're most fascinated with how people are watching me. I think they're more critical of, "Hey, how are you guys reacting to my dad?" That’s the only thing they can think of, they never sit there and go, "Dad was just hilarious. Dad, that stuff you do." They do kinda crack up and they did really enjoy that last special because a lot of it's the truth. The Sears paint story. They know I'm a big metal head. Going to dinner with them, what a disaster, [chuckle] and the petting zoo. So, they get a kick that I can talk about real life on stage, but they think it's natural. They don't get that I'm actually working. They're like, "Oh, you just talk about what's going on and that's your job?" [chuckle] Yeah, it's a little more complicated than that.

[chuckle]

MRR: The life of a comedian is like these ridiculous things are happening and in the moment it kind of sucks, but later on you'll be like, "This is gonna be fun to tell on stage," right?

Jim Breuer: Yeah. My life now even, and I should talked to Amy about this. But I think it was about a week ago, we were texting each other and one of my texts didn't go through, which is really weird, we kept talking and kept talking over text and one of the texts I wrote was, "Hey, come drive and see me. My room is under... Waiting for you." And then I had to go on stage, and when I got off stage it was a 40-page text on “Who’d you send that text to?” I'm going on a binge spending spree and I'm gonna burn everything I buy. I'm gonna bury you. Like who are you cheating with?" I was like "Are you crazy?" But at the same time like, "Oh my God, I just got another 20 minutes. This is phenomenal."

[laughter]

MRR: You also just put out a song, right, Santa Claus Ain't Coming to Town?

Jim Breuer: Yeah, Santa ain't coming to town.

MRR: It's like you're yelling at your kids through metal.

Jim Breuer: Yes, and that's what it is. I'm a metal head. [chuckle] I'm making a record in January and I wanna be the metal Wiggles. I wanna be the Wiggles for adults. [chuckle] And I'm standing along that same family line, but I wanna add some metal into this family life. And this is kind of the first little hint of what's on the way and it's how me and my wife deal with my kids. And I say, "Oh, you wanna give me a Santa list? Well, before I give it to Santa, we have some details to discuss."

[chuckle]

MRR: And this is on an album that comes out in Spring 2014, right?

Jim Breuer: Yes. Yeah, with a tour and that whole thing.

MRR: And the song comes out Tuesday, December 3rd. And this new special comes out on the 26th. Jim, thank you so much for talking with me today. I really appreciate it and I hope everything goes great for you.

Jim Breuer: And thank you, thanks. Have a good one.