||10 Questions with|
The assumption for years has been that gorgeous women don't need stand-up, don't need to work out their demons with a microphone on the naked stage. But here stands Silverman--all raven hair, swan's neck, intense eyes and slangy, self-possessed physicality--and almost as one, the audience leans forward, raptly attentive . . . A few years after a new breed of candid female rockers revolutionized the vocabulary of pop music, the 28-year-old Silverman stands poised to do the same thing to stand-up comedy.|
--Michael MacCambridge in GQ Magazine: "Sarah Silverman Has the Cleanest Breasts in America (and other odd facts about the funniest, sexiest lady in the land), March, 1999
Sarah Silverman is the not only one of the funniest comics working today, she is also one of the most fearless. Where most comics fear silence, Sarah uses it to shape her routines and sharpen her punchlines. She is currently touring the country in her one-woman show, "Jesus is Magic", to rave reviews.
The dazzling Ms. Silverman.
Sarah grew up as one of four daughters in a middle-class family from Bedford, New Hampshire. Her great loves were always sports and comedy. In her bedroom, the message "I LOVE STEVE MARTIN" was stenciled on the ceiling.
In the summer of 1988, 17-year-old Sarah did her first stand-up gig at Stitches, on Commonwealth Avenue in Boston. She finally tried some open-mike nights around Manhattan, which in turn led to real gigs, which in turn led to touring the country. Soon she was spotted by scouts for Saturday Night Live.
Sarah onscreen with her childhood idol, taping The Martin Short Show.
In 1993, Silverman was hired as a featured writer-performer on SNL. But almost immediately she had trouble with the NBC censors. Her first routine was a commentary slot on "Weekend Update" in which she spoke about the twenty-four-hour waiting period some states were requiring prior to an abortion. She said: "Quite frankly, I think it's a good law. I was going to get an abortion the other day. I totally wanted an abortion.... And it turns out I was just thirsty."
After her stint on SNL, she returned to stand-up comedy, and acted in a couple of episodes of Seinfeld as Kramer's girlfriend. Then she got a featured role on The Larry Sanders Show, playing a comedy writer whose jokes kept getting cut because of a male head writer who thought weren't funny. After that, she was a cast member on Mr. Show.
She also appeared on Late Night with Conan O'Brien, The Late Show with David Letterman, Politically Incorrect, The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn, Dr. Katz (Laura Silverman, Sarah's sister, plays Dr Katz' receptionist.), and Star Trek Voyager.
Sarah's films include There’s Something About Mary, Bullworth, What Planet Are You From, and The Bachelor.
Sarah is also a great athlete: "She's kind of like--what's her name?--Babe Didrikson," longtime buddy Colin Quinn told "GQ" magazine. "She can throw a softball half a mile; she can hit a twenty-foot jumper; she's got a punch like a Guatemalan welterweight." She plays football on Doheny late at night and has an open invitation to Garry Shandling's pickup basketball game, where she's the only woman on the court. ("Well," Shandling told GQ, "she and David Duchovny.")
Usually we only ask celebrities ten questions, but with some one as funny as Sarah, that would just be a waste...
(PLUS A BUNCH MORE)
SportsHollywood: Do you enjoy professional basketball, or do you prefer to watch the Clippers?
SILVERMAN: I enjoy the last quarter of all basketball games. And all of any Bulls games back when Jordan, Pippin, and Rodman were all together.
SportsHollywood: What sports do you play?
SILVERMAN: Basketball, tennis and softball. I play other sports, but those are the ones I kick ass at.
SportsHollywood: Do you still play in Garry Shandling's pickup basketball games?
SILVERMAN: Yeah... How do you know about that?
Sarah shoots as the guys watch her and dribble all over themselves.
(Before stalking charges can be filed, the subject is quickly changed.)
SportsHollywood: Was the character you played on Larry Sanders related at all to your actual writing experience on Saturday Night Live?
SILVERMAN: I think that was the original idea, but, no, not really.
SportsHollywood: What event would you like to see included in the Olympics?
SportsHollywood: When you play basketball with John Cusack and Bill Fishman, how often do they suggest a game of shirts vs, skins with you, where they wear the shirts?
SILVERMAN: I've never played b-ball with John Cusak, I"ve only played at the court he has in his office. But, yes, that HI-LARIOUS shirts/skins joke is made by some comic genius just about every time I play, and each time I fall to the ground laughing while I piss and shit myself in comic awe.
SportsHollywood: Which do you enjoy more: Getting a basket in front of a crowd or getting a laugh in front of a crowd?
SILVERMAN: They're both great. You can't compare them. What do you like better: cumming on a porn star's back, or watching your first child be born into the world? --See, they're both wonderful.
SportsHollywood: Name five Clippers.
Sarah prepares to punch out Barbara Walters on The View.
SportsHollywood: What's your favorite sports movie?
SILVERMAN: Brian's Song. I love when James Caan calls Billy Dee Williams a "nigger," and Billy Dee laughs his ass off. And then he tells his girlfriend who's also black--I think it was Judy Pace--and she laughs. It shows the truth--that the real meaning of a word is only as powerful or harmless as the emotion behind it. And it's awesome illustration of a friendship without any exposition. Is that a good answer? I'm a jackass.
SportsHollywood: What is the worst sports movie ever made?
SILVERMAN: Schindler's List.
SportsHollywood: Who is your favorite athlete?
SILVERMAN: Muhammad Ali. In his prime he was a funny, smart thinker, untainted by the forces and opinions around him. He's the greatest. And I thought his relationship with Howard Cosell surpassed any in even the best buddy movies.
SportsHollywood: What's in your medicine cabinet?
SILVERMAN: Zoloft, Alesse, tylenol pm, exederin pm, bobby pins, benadryl, your mother's vibrator.
SportsHollywood: Who is your favorite comic?
SILVERMAN: Todd Glass, Steve Martin (on talk shows), Garry Shandling, and, your mother.
SportsHollywood: What's your favorite pizza?
SILVERMAN: Crispy--with mushrooms and peppers. And candy. And your mother.
SportsHollywood: Which do you consider yourself first: Actress, comedienne, writer, basketball player, or Hollywood Square?
SILVERMAN: Fart Machine.
SportsHollywood: Is the casting couch still alive in Hollywood?
SILVERMAN: I don't know. I can't seem to get anyone to blow me.
SportsHollywood: Ever had cybersex?
SILVERMAN: I was cyber-raped. All I could do was revert into my mind and "go away" to another webpage.
Interview by Rodney Lee Conover. He denies that his mother would ever own a vibrator.
"A couple nights ago, I was licking jelly off my boyfriend's penis . . . and I thought, Oh, my God--I'm turning into my mother!"
"I saw my father naked once . . . But it was okay . . . Because I was soooo young . . . and sooo drunk."
"The writers of Sanford and Son were so brave in bringing their program to television. I mean, working with all those black people!"
"I don't have a problem with gay men. I just don't want to date them"
"So I live in this apartment that's disgusting--it's really dirty. And the kitchen floor is, like, sticky. And I had to do something about it. So finally I went out and bought some, uh, slippers."
"I'm suing my boss for sexual harrassment ... and it's real hard, and a big strain on me ... because he hasn't done anything."
"I buy water at the liquor store across the street from where I live. So I'm walking into the door, and standing, loitering, outside the door is a man. And I walk by him to go in and he says [in a clenched, abrupt voice], 'I want pussy!' Now, I don't want to seem conceited or anything, but [rolling her eyes, both embarrassed and proud] he was talking about me. It offended me, obviously, but more than offending me, it made me feel sorry for him. It made me sad. Because it was so obvious to me that this was a person who grew up and who was a child whose mother and father never gave him any pussy."
"I'm going out with a guy who's half-black, who's totally going to break my heart......Oh my God. I can't believe I said that. I'm so negative. He's half-white."
"Models are fair game for comics. Why? Because they’re so pretty. Society has no pity for them. But, you know, models scream when you put them in boiling water."
'Ten Questions' Archive