Interview outtakes: Judd Apatow
In this week's interview with Judd Apatow, the film director espouses his genuine belief that self-help books’ clichéd Mars/Venus take on gender relations is actually pretty accurate. (A colleague of mine told me that reading that made her realize why she’d never had any desire to see his movies.) Here are a few outtakes from our chat, some moments that don’t appear in the published Q&A.
When talking about his new book I Found This Funny, a compilation of short humor pieces by authors including Raymond Carver, Nora Ephron, Jonathan Franzen and David Sedaris, Apatow recalled the early, defining influence of writing: “That’s what saved my life was creative writing,” he said. “When I was a kid, a teacher asked us to write an autobiography, and I made mine up and I just said that I was a secret agent and I was making love to all the teachers on the side. Instead of yelling at me, she said, ‘Oh, you’re really funny. You could write comedy like Woody Allen.’ It was the first time an adult said I was funny, and it was a real turning point for me.”
Also not in this week’s Q&A: Apatow spoke of a couple of his upcoming projects, including the new Pee-wee Herman film, which follows Paul Reubens’s recent Broadway debut. “I’ve always been a very, very big fan of his,” Apatow said. “I have photos of me in 11th grade seeing him do stand-up comedy at Carolines in New York.” Another project in the works: Apatow will produce a new HBO series starring and written and directed by Lena Dunham: “She’s just a ridiculously talented funny woman.”
And on “Apatown,” the term for the group of actors, directors and editors with whom Apatow consistently works, he candidly admitted, “That’s probably part of coming from a divorced family. You never want the family to break up.”