PALEY CENTER FOR MEDIA, THE: DREAM OF ... AN EVENING WITH FRED ARMISEN {LONG VERSION}

Summary

One in a series of seminars presented by The Paley Center for Media in New York. This evening honors comedian Fred Armisen, "Saturday Night Live" cast member and co-creator and star of the comedy series "Portlandia."

David Bushman (television curator, The Paley Center for Media) offers opening remarks before introducing the evening's moderator, Jonathan Krisel (director, writer, "Portlandia").

Armisen and Krisel discuss topics which include: Armisen's friendships with other comedians and comedy writers; his affinity for languages; how his multi-national family background has influenced his sense of humor; his participation in the hardcore punk rock scene in the 1990s; influences on his "avant-garde" comedy style, such as the band Devo and director John Waters; his visit to the 1998 "South by Southwest" convention, where his video of impersonating a journalist led to his decision to go into comedy; his move to Los Angeles, where he began his standup comedy career; Armisen's relationship with veteran comedian Bob Odenkirk; his audition for "Saturday Night Live" and how working on the show was a "life-changing" experience; his first meeting with "Portlandia" co-creator and co-star Carrie Brownstein and how they formed "ThunderAnt," a comedy team that produced short films; how "ThunderAnt" evolved into the beginnings of "Portlandia"; and the unique production style of "Portlandia" and its use of improvisation.

Questions from the audience then lead to a discussion of the following topics among others: how Armisen prepares for an impression; Armisen's inability to judge his performances; Armisen's unique relationship with his Japanese grandfather; and the inspiration behind a sketch on "Portlandia" involving "rules for baristas." Clips are interspersed throughout the evening which include: a selection from "Fred Armisen's Guide to Music and South by Southwest" (1998), featuring an interview with Steve Albini; Armisen's work on "Saturday Night Live"; an excerpt from Armisen and Brownstein's short film "Boink!," part of their comedy project "ThunderAnt"; and scenes from "Portlandia."

Details

  • NETWORK:
  • DATE: February 21, 2013 6:30 PM
  • RUNNING TIME: 2:03:00
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: 109708
  • GENRE: Seminars
  • SUBJECT HEADING:
  • SERIES RUN:
  • COMMERCIALS:

CREDITS

    • David Bushman … Host
    • Jonathan Krisel … Moderator
    • Fred Armisen … Guest
    • Steve Albini
    • Carrie Brownstein
    • Devo
    • Bob Odenkirk
    • John Waters