Filmmaker Darren Aronofsky knows his films are not always crowd pleasers but he also knows exactly what he wants to say. Darren talks with Marc about the universal mysteries that inspire him - from numerology to Old Testament parables to shadowy professions - and the personal implications behind movies like mother!, Requiem for a Dream, Pi, and more. This episode is sponsored by Easy: Season 2 on Netflix, Sonos One, Casper, and SimpliSafe.
Singer-songwriter Loudon Wainwright III talks life, love and Roman numerals. The prolific musician tells Marc about the heyday of the folk music scene, the late-in-life acting career he didn't expect, and the burden of having talented singer-songwriter children who turn his transgressions into songs. Plus, writer-director-producer (and Loudon Wainwright fan) Judd Apatow stops by to talk about getting back on the standup stage for his Netflix special, Judd Apatow: The Return. This episode is sponsored by Spotify, Zelle, Stamps.com, and How Did This Get Made.
At some point after James Franco became a high-profile movie star, he found himself asking, "What if you get everything you want and nothing changes?" As James explains to Marc, that led to a re-engagement with art and academics, a stint on General Hospital, an infamous hosting experience on the Oscars, and many passion projects that he willed to fruition. Only now, with his new movie The Disaster Artist, which he starred in and directed, does James realize what he was chasing and what he has in common with The Room director Tommy Wiseau. This episode is sponsored by Orbi, Squarespace, and SimpliSafe.
Like the protagonist of her new film Lady Bird, Greta Gerwig grew up in Sacramento, spent the summer going to the state fair, had a complicated relationship with her mother, and escaped to institutes of higher learning in New York City. Marc and Greta talk about the desire to get out from under the weight of your home town, how that tension translated into her acting career, and where she was coming from when she wrote and directed Lady Bird. This episode is sponsored by Spotify, Zelle, Stamps.com, and HelloFresh.
His given name is Sam Beam but he's known in music as Iron & Wine, maker of soulful folk rock. Marc finds Sam to be a thoughtful son of the South who let his early interests in avant-garde photography, filmmaking and artwork open the door to a career in music. But Sam also explains to Marc why he doesn't listen to much music anymore. Plus, Bob Saget returns to the garage for a rare third appearance to talk about his new special, his just-wrapped movie, and the sudden change in his life. This episode is sponsored by Happy on Syfy, Spotify, and Zelle.
Rob Huebel and Marc start a new podcast within this podcast. It's a show called Contact List and they're pretty sure it makes them sound like jerks. But before that, Rob tells Marc about getting started in comedy during the early days of the UCB Theater, which led to his sketch comedy show Human Giant as well as rolls in movies like The Descendants and TV shows like The League. Plus, they talk about Rob's other new show, Do You Want to See a Dead Body?, which is better than Contact List. This episode is sponsored by Michelle Wolf: Nice Lady on HBO, Orbi, Firefox, and Stamps.com.
It's an extra helping of music talk for Thanksgiving. First Marc sits down with filmmaker Kasper Collin and jazz musician Bennie Maupin to talk about the documentary I Called Him Morgan, which deals with the life, love and murder of jazz trumpeter Lee Morgan. Then Texas blues rocker Jimmie Vaughan jams with Marc in the garage, sharing stories about Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy, and Jimmie's little brother Stevie Ray Vaughan. This episode is sponsored by Stitcher Premium, Spotify, Zelle, and Sonos.
For Christina Pazsitzky, comedy was finally something she enjoyed doing after burning through twenty-two different jobs in the course of four years. She talks with Marc about her troubled teen years, her ineffectual degree in philosophy, her general post-college aimlessness, her stint on MTV Road Rules, and the other circumstances of her life that made the grind of standup comedy seem exhilarating by comparison. Christina also talks about how she and her husband, Tom Segura, are dealing with the early years of parenthood. This episode is sponsored by Stitcher Premium, Squarespace, Away, and Firefox by Mozilla.
Lawrence O'Donnell is on MSNBC every weeknight talking about the chaos and tumult of uncertain times. He's no stranger to historic national turbulence, as he came of age in the Vietnam Era and received his draft notice shortly before the U.S. withdrawal. Lawrence talks with Marc about those times, which are the subject of his new book, but also about his Boston upbringing, his father's career change from cop to defense attorney, his job in the U.S. Senate, and his time writing for The West Wing. This episode is sponsored by HelloFresh and ZipRecruiter.
As a member of The Pixies and The Breeders, Kim Deal is already a rock legend. But she was also a backup singer in a disco band with her twin sister Kelley and a budding cellular biologist with a degree in Medical Technology. Kim talks with Marc about all of that as well as her hard-fought sobriety and her reasons for coming around on digital music productionThis episode is sponsored by Night of Too Many Stars on HBO, the new film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, Stamps.com, and Casper.
Whether you call his band Thee Oh Sees, Oh Sees, or OCS, there's no denying John Dwyer's prolific musical output. From garage bands in Providence to noise rock in San Francisco to his current jam in Los Angeles, John has been doing it his own way, including the creation of his own music label, to churn out an abundance of albums. John talks with Marc about the music he makes, Ty Segall, Mitch Hedberg, Cuba, David Bowie, Iggy Pop, rock and roll drug casualties, and what it was like to play a concert where a hole opened up in the floor. This episode is sponsored by the new film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, Sonos, and Capterra.
Jenna Fischer came to Los Angeles when she was 22 with no contacts, no guidance, and no idea of what it meant to sink or swim in show business. Now with a successful acting career and a long-running role as the beloved Pam on The Office, Jenna wants aspiring actors to get the advice she never got. As she tells Marc, that's the main reason she wrote her new book, in addition to detailing some of her own true Hollywood stories. This episode is sponsored by The Opposition with Jordan Klepper on Comedy Central, Hot Date on Pop TV, SimpliSafe, and Stamps.com.
John Hammond was kid from New York with a dad in the music industry, so it's no surprise he became a recording artist. But it was a bit unexpected that he became obsessed with the Blues at an early age. As one of the premiere Blues artists of the past six decades, John tells Marc about the connections he's made along the way, from Howlin' Wolf to Bob Dylan to The Band to Cheech and Chong. Plus, the always excitable Michael Rapaport returns to the garage to talk about his new book, This Book Has Balls. This episode is sponsored by the Movie Crush podcast and Squarespace.
Joy Behar was already a successful comic when she became a co-host on The View. But before she was a comic, she had already been a teacher, raised a daughter, and worked on staff at Good Morning America. Joy talks with Marc about the many chapters of her life, her new book about surviving Donald Trump's presidency, and whether or not comedy can ever be inappropriate. Plus, Marc's buddy Adam Goldberg calls in to try and crowdfund his new movie, The Hebrew Hammer vs Hitler. This episode is sponsored by Sonos and Stamps.com.
Marc completely missed the era of music that writer Lizzy Goodman chronicles in her book 'Meet Me in the Bathroom: Rebirth and Rock and Roll in New York City 2001-2011.' But as Lizzy explains to Marc, that era is just one chapter in the larger New York cultural story, a story that both Lizzy and Marc found themselves rushing to be a part of after growing up in New Mexico. Plus, comedian Dana Gould stops by to talk about his new album, his TV show Stan Against Evil, and Don Rickles. This episode is sponsored by The Jim Jefferies Show Podcast, Sonos, and HelloFresh.
Actor Willem Dafoe might have had a hard time standing out while he was growing up as the seventh of eight kids. But he found a way to express himself performing in community plays, which led to the pursuit of stage acting and an embrace of the avant-garde performance world. Willem talks to Marc about his early stage work as well as his many notable films like Platoon, To Live and Die in L.A., Auto Focus, and his latest movie The Florida Project. This episode is sponsored by the new podcast The Daily Zeitgeist and Sonos.
Bassem Youssef was a surgeon in Egypt who started doing a YouTube show from his house and eventually became the most popular television personality in his country, doing what people called "The Egyptian Daily Show." Bassem talks with Marc about using comedy as a political weapon and what happens when the government pushes back in a life threatening way. Also, Marc's old friend and co-worker Sam Seder stops by to talk about doing political news every day in the current climate. This episode is sponsored by Tracey Ullman's Show on HBO, Squarespace, and ZipRecruiter.
On a list of the world's funniest people, Tracey Ullman ranks pretty high. But Tracey tells Marc she doesn't consider herself a comedian or a comic, but rather a character actor. The fact that she started performing as a way to cheer up her widowed mother means she's always trying to find sympathetic notes in the characters she's creating, with an ability to mock and humanize simultaneously. Tracey and Marc talk about her TV shows, her family, The Simpsons, and her brief pop music career that led to a friendship with Paul McCartney. This episode is sponsored by The Opposition with Jordan Klepper on Comedy Central, Stamps.com, and Casper.