Christopher Guest's new HBO comedy series follows a down-on-his-luck guy looking into his family genealogy. Guest, who pioneered the mockumentary style in cult classics like This Is Spinal Tap, co-created the show with Jim Piddock and star Chris O'Dowd.
Indie director Lynn Shelton's latest film stars Emily Blunt and Rosemarie DeWitt as half-sisters Iris and Hannah, and Mark Duplass as Iris' best friend, Jack. The three connect — and then reconnect — on a remote island off the coast of Washington state.
The Oscar-winning actress has played everything from a sassy car expert in My Cousin Vinny to a stripper alongside Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler. In an interview with Fresh Air contributor Dave Davies, Tomei explains how she picks her roles -- and why she's excited about playing a mother in the new film Cyrus.
Comedian and actor Will Ferrell talks about his new film Stranger Than Fiction. Ferrell plays an accountant who finds that his life has a voiceover that only he can hear. It turns out he's the subject of a novel, and that the writer plans to kill him. Ferrell became famous as a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 1995 to 2002, and has gone on to star in movies such as Old School, Elf and Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.
Anchorman, starring Will Ferrell, is now out on DVD. It's a spoof of local TV news shows. McKay was the head writer for Saturday Night Live from 1997 to 2001 and a founding member of the Upright Citizens Brigade comedy troupe. This interview was originally broadcast on July, 8, 2004.
The Los Angeles theatre improv group The Groundlings celebrates its 30th anniversary. Groundlings launched the careers of the actors and comics including Phil Hartman, Lisa Kudrow and Will Ferrell. We talk with the group's founder, Gary Austin, and former member, Cheryl Hines, who now co-stars in HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm.
Late night talk show host Conan O'Brien celebrates ten years on the air Sunday September 14, 2003, with a primetime special on NBC. In 1993, he moved into the Late Night host slot when David Letterman went to CBS. Prior to Late Night, O'Brien was a writer for Saturday Night Live and writer and producer for The Simpsons.
O'Brien took over David Letterman's spot in 1993, and his "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" has just celebrated it's third birthday. Previous to that, he was a writer for Saturday Night Live and The Simpsons.
Two British actresses: Brenda Blethyn and Marianne Jean-Baptiste. Blethyn is one of the UK's best-known stage and television actresses. She's currently starring in the new Mike Leigh film "Secrets & Lies." Jean-Baptiste also co-stars. The two talk about the unique way Leigh directed them on set.
A discussion with two of the makers of the feminist film "Girls Town," Jim McKay, the co-writer and director, and Lili Taylor, the lead. Taylor plays Patti Lucci, an abused teen mother who struggles to understand the suicide of her friend, Nikki. Patti and her two best friends learn that Nikki killed herself because she was raped--they then boldly confront the man who did it. Taylor recently starred in the film version of "I Shot Andy Warhol;" McKay got his start shooting music videos for REM. "Girls Town" is his first feature film.
TV critic David Bianculli reviews "Chantilly Lace," on the Showtime cable network. The telemovie stars JoBeth Williams, Lindsay Crouse, Helen Slater, Jill Eikenberry, Martha Plimpton, Ally Sheedy, and Talia Shire. The plot revolves around a reunion of old friends, but the lines and action are mostly improvised by the actresses.
Actor Michael Murphy. Murphy's first work was on television when he was still a high school English teacher. He debuted on the TV series "Combat," and later acted on "Ben Casey," "Dr. Kildaire" and "Bonanza." The director for the "Combat" series was Robert Altman, with whom Murphy has had a long association. He later acted in many films by Robert Altman, including "M*A*S*H," "Brewster McCloud," "McCabe and Mrs.
Film director Robert Altman. He's best known for the 1975 film "Nashville," a free-form mosaic of American life as seen through 24 characters involved in a political rally. His other films include "3 Women," a hypnotic film about the troubled friendship of three troubled women. Altman has been working in television recently, directing the remake of the classic 1953 movie "The Caine Mutiny" that aired earlier this month on CBS.
Ronee Blakely is an actress, singer, and pianist. She is best known for her role in the Robert Altman film "Nashville." In the film, her character, a country music star is assassinated. Many have referenced the scene of her death in discussing the murder of John Lennon. Blakely has also worked with Bob Dylan with the Rolling Thunder Review and on the film "Renaldo and Clara." She describes her personal style as "new wave country." She joins the show to discuss her career.
Robert Klein is one of the forerunners of the current stand-up comedy boom. His 1973 album "Child of the 50s" established him as one the leading comics of the baby boomer generation. Klein grew up in the Bronx and honed his skill in the improvisation troupe Second City.