Three Thoughts with Don’t Look Up Producer Adam McKay

Don't Look Up Movie Cast Image from Netflix
Image courtesy of Netflix

You may also recognize his name from a selection of your favorite productions including but not limited to: Drunk History, Dead to Me, Vice, Talladega Nights, Booksmart, Step Brothers, Don’t Look Up, Succession, Eastbound & Down, Tammy, Get Hard, Hustlers, Anchorman, The Big Short, The Other Guys, Land of the Lost—the list most certainly goes on.

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How can comedy better unite around environmentalism?

With things as dire as they are, we need to unite and activate the community. A sense of humor is key to that. When we laugh together we share a world view. And a community can form. And most of all with the challenges ahead we need to keep perspective and not get overwhelmed. Laughter can’t happen when we’re overwhelmed. We need a healthy distance in order to find the humor in a situation.  With community, perspective and humor we can do anything.

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A quote about comedy that has stuck with you over the years?

“Treat the audience like poets and geniuses and that’s what they will become.” -Del Close

Del was my improvisational teacher in Chicago. He taught that audiences are far smarter than most people give them credit for. A lot of critics said Don’t Look Up wouldn’t play for a broad audience but that’s precisely what it’s done. People get the big picture. They really do.

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Why did the general ask for money when the snacks were free?

I will never ever tell!