Friday, July 23, 2010

Interview transcript: Dana Carvey

So I got to interview to Garth Algar. Pretty cool.
Dana Carvey is best remembered for his characters on Saturday Nigh Live, including the aforementioned Garth and the conservatively snippy Church Lady.
Carvey was generous enough to share the latter character with Fred Wolf for a series of live animation clips called “Beyond The Comics,” which ran in beta on our website.
On an aside, Carvey was hilarious every single minute of the interview, which ran so long that I ran out of room on my digital recorder.
And the most embarrassing thing happened to me — right in the middle of Carvey doing his famous Ross Perot impersonation, my cell phone dropped the call! Right in the middle of the impersonation. I scrambled to call back, and without missing a beat, I got Ross Perot yelling into the phone “You're not listening to me!”
Carvey spoke with “The Beat” about BTC and Wolf. Here's an excerpt:

Q: You've done some online production in the past, right?
A: I did some web stuff, I always thought I was too young to play her anyways.
Just in full disclosure, I am wearing the (Church Lady) dress right now, just to be transparent, which is a new word of the age. I want to be transparent.

Q: How did it go doing these for Fred Wolf?
A: It's still fun to do. I've known Fred a long time, and I thought it was a neat way to bring her back.
I thought those guys did a nice job of capturing the look and the attitude for the animation. Creatively, the sky is the limit. She can comment once or twice a week on current things. It's a fun, creative outlet. It seems like the character, what else could you do with it? I could do a one man show in Vegas. Maybe I still will (laughs).
It seemed like a natural thing, with what he was trying to do and it's fun. I look forward to doing more of those.

Q: It's pretty cool that you own the character and are able to lend it to your friend for his project.
A: Back in the day, when I was one of the first to do it (license his character), I had T-shirts and posters made and got some flack for that. “Hey man! We're counter culture.” Of course now you can get “Conehead” oven mitts.
That was before the plethora of SNL movies. I probably could have done a movie.
It was just sort of laying around. Because of her quirky role, it was changed later. I had to claim ownership of the character.
Every once in a while, it's just a fun character to do. We live in an age where you reremember all of your heroes, but there's one character that lasts as a character. Whether it's Groucho Marx, or Jonathan Winters...
It's a great little outlet for doing this. The technology exists now to make this expensive animation, in relative terms. All this technological advancement had to take place to make this page that Fred's cooked up conceviveable economically. It's cool that technology has allowed this sort of access.

Q: Do you read newspapers online?
A: I definitely love the flexibility and expediency and variety of online newspapers. There are amazing advantages to online newspapers. The archival aspect of it is just amazing.
When Fred first came up with the idea, I said, ‘Yes, of course!’ That's 21st century culture, of course. To click on and see a little animation now, of course.
I hope people like it. I think the fact that everybody likes Fred, everybody's doing it with good will and voluteering. He's done all of the heavy lifting as far as running around recording everyone. It's pretty amazing.
Just to let you know, while I was driving, I do a lot of pilates and yoga, so I was able to get out of the dress and wig and now I'm dressed as Hanz.

Q: Any ideas for future comics?

A: I want to do Barrack Obama, addressing BP saying (in a spot-on voice impersonation) "We are now forming a commission, that will study whether we need a commission.”
It's my responsibility to make fun of each president...

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