I loved growing up in Tulsa.
– Bill Hader
I don’t think I could do what Woody Allen or Clint Eastwood or Ben Stiller do, where they direct a movie and they star in it. I would just be like, ‘Oh, I don’t even want to look at my face.’
I started making little short films with friends, and then I decided I wanted to get into the school play in high school.
In Tulsa, it was sports or nothing.
Before you get to ‘SNL,’ you have your own sensibility. And when you get to ‘SNL,’ it’s the show’s sensibility.
You can be the lead in a movie just for the sake of being a lead in a movie, or you can just be in a good movie.
My dad was a big Frank Zappa fan, so I remember listening to a lot of Frank Zappa. Girls do not like Frank Zappa.
I – at the table reads, I break constantly. If something is up there that I’m not expecting, I tend to – I can’t help myself; I’ll start laughing.
Jon Ronson makes me laugh. I’ve read all of his books.
Good directors give short and specific instructions to their actors.
I was at Second City L.A., going through the conservatory, and I graduated in 2004 and I got ‘SNL’ in 2005.
I met Robin Williams a few times, and he was a beautiful guy.
‘The State’ was a huge thing for me. I watched that and ‘SNL’ together when I was 15, 16.
My mom, dad, grandparents, we all do voices.
To be honest, I don’t know how comedy works.
I’ve always admired Jeff Bridges. I really like how one can never get a handle on what he’s doing.
When people tell you what doesn’t work, they’re usually right. When they tell you how to fix it, they’re usually wrong.
I got invited to the Playboy Mansion with the Lonely Island guys after their first season on ‘SNL,’ and I sat in the corner drinking coffee and talking to Akiva Schaffer about what aspect ratio he was going to shoot ‘Hot Rod’ in. Like, that’s what we talk about.
Fred Armisen does a pretty good me.
There are some really funny women at ‘SNL,’ man.
In the U.S., it’s like, you start with a great script, and then on set – not everybody, but definitely in the Apatow group – you go off, and you’re improvising on camera. So while you’re on camera, you’re saying things that no one else has ever heard before during the actual take.
‘Vanity Fair’ did this grid thing a couple years ago, connecting people who’ve worked together, and I had the most branches on it or whatever, because I’d worked with so-and-so and so-and-so worked with so-and-so, and I was kind of in the middle.
The whole thing with animated movies is that it’s very hard to get out of your head because it’s very moving through each line systematically.
When you’re at your absolute, most exhausted… That’s when you have to be at the top of your game.
As far as post-‘SNL’ career, whatever kind of comes my way that looks interesting, I’ll do it, you know?
To be honest, I watch way more dramatic films when I’m chilling at home. I think when you work in comedy, you just want something different in your private life. Makes you feel balanced, I guess.
Voices are a good way to get in and out of things. James Carville constantly calls my wife to say I’ll be home late. Mandy Patinkin and Al Pacino call to get me restaurant reservations.
When I was on ‘SNL,’ I was getting weirdly anxious about being on camera, which I had never really done before. And so my solution was just to not watch my stuff. And then I found out that other actors do it, too, and I felt less weird about it.
At the beginning of each week at ‘Saturday Night Live,’ we have a full cast meeting where Lorne Michaels introduces the upcoming host.
To be totally honest? I don’t know if I’ll keep doing more impressions. People told me I had a facility for it, and I was like, ‘Okay, I’m the impression guy.’ So you imagine the cast at ‘SNL’ is an A-Team, and you’ve got the explosives guy, and I’m the impression guy.