If I was a filmmaker worth interviewing and I was getting peppered by David Poland with those little bee-bee pellet questions….ping! ping! ping! ping! ping!…I think I would shut down pretty quickly and just turn hostile and snide and sullen. I hate those little ping-ping questions. You should just talk to people, I feel, and groove along and share observations about this or that, and then weave questions in as they come to mind. Look at Apatow’s face as he answers question after question. He’s being ping-pinged to death.
“The dance is, how can I do something very insightful but at the same time make it funny and make it amusing, and figure out what is the balance between comedy and drama?,” Apatow says about two-thirds of the way through. “How can I get as much drama [that is] required in the movie and still be allowed to be funny, and not have the humor step on the drama? You don’t want the comedy to be sweaty. You want it all to be organic. You don’t want it to be pushed. It has to really come out of these situations.
“But I am trying to make the movies really funny. And I do want the ability to stop and..y’know, take hunks of time to not be funny at all, and then you have to figure out how to get back to funny without being weird. There are people who have done this very well.Cameron Crowe, James. L Brooks and Neil Simon especially, in his plays. And i look to their work as examples of how to do it. They were always big inspirations for me.
Are you happy, satisfied…ping, ping, ping?
“I am generally pretty happy guy. As happy as a neurotic insecure hypervigilant man in an existential crisis can be at any moment. But yeah, I appreciate where I’m at…it’s been super fun.”
Being ping-pinged by Poland makes an interview feel “sweaty” and “pushed.”