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Life is a dream for the wise, a game for the fool, a comedy for the rich, a tragedy for the poor.
Most comedy is based on getting a laugh at somebody else's expense. And I find that that's just a form of bullying in a major way. So I want to be an example that you can be funny and be kind, and make people laugh without hurting somebody else's feelings.
There is a thin line that separates laughter and pain, comedy and tragedy, humor and hurt.
Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall into an open sewer and die.
For me, comedy starts as a spew, a kind of explosion, and then you sculpt it from there, if at all. It comes out of a deeper, darker side. Maybe it comes from anger, because I'm outraged by cruel absurdities, the hypocrisy that exists everywhere, even within yourself, where it's hardest to see.
It's always better to shock people and change people's expectations than to give them exactly what they think you can do. It's not unexpected for me to be in a comedy film anymore; I'm no longer the underdog in that world. Not that I'm great or good at it or anything, it's just that I've done a bunch of them, so you're not shocked.
Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious.
Life is a tragedy when seen in close-up, but a comedy in long-shot.
Socialism is a fraud, a comedy, a phantom, a blackmail.
The key is just to ignore the pain, because physical comedy only works if you see someone get hurt and they aren't actually hurt. If someone gets hit in the face with a bat, falls down, and gets back up, it's funny. If they stay down and their jaw is wired shut in the next scene, it's really tragic and weird. You have to pretend it doesn't hurt.
I have always felt comedy and tragedy are roommates. If you look up comedy and tragedy, you will find a very old picture of two masks. One mask is tragedy. It looks like it's crying. The other mask is comedy. It looks like it's laughing. Nowadays, we would say, 'How tasteless and insensitive. A comedy mask is laughing at a tragedy mask.'
Why do we laugh at such terrible things? Because comedy is often the sarcastic realization of inescapable tragedy.
Bryant H. McGill
All I need to make a comedy is a park, a policeman and a pretty girl.
I never even thought of myself as deadpan until someone wrote an article about me about a year after I was doing comedy. There was a paper called the 'Boston Phoenix,' and someone wrote a description of what I was doing and that's where I first saw 'deadpan.'
The dueling maturity levels in high school is such a source of comedy to me. I was always such a late developer. I was last to walk. I was last to ride a bike. I was last to have sex. That's why it's fun to portray one side of your childhood onscreen.
Comedy is acting out optimism.
This world is a comedy to those that think, a tragedy to those that feel.
The best kind of comedy to me is when you make people laugh at things they've never laughed at, and also take a light into the darkened corners of people's minds, exposing them to the light.
When I tour, it's like, well, like a food tour as much as a comedy tour. I try to eat at all the weird places, the obscure barbecue joints, burger places. There are a few spots in L.A. that I'm obsessed with - one of them is the Taco Zone taco truck on Alvarado. There are secret off-menu items that are amazing.
You can take lessons to become almost anything: flying lessons, piano lessons, skydiving lessons, acting lessons, race car driving lessons, singing lessons. But there's no class for comedy. You have to be born with it. God has to give you this gift.
In black neighborhoods, everybody appreciated comedy about real life. In the white community, fantasy was funnier. I started looking for the jokes that were equally hilarious across the board, for totally different reasons.
Comedy just pokes at problems, rarely confronts them squarely. Drama is like a plate of meat and potatoes, comedy is rather the dessert, a bit like meringue.
Comedy is defiance. It's a snort of contempt in the face of fear and anxiety. And it's the laughter that allows hope to creep back on the inhale.
'Funny People' is my favorite performance of myself to date. Even though it's a comedy and there are serious moments, I really felt like Leo felt like a real person. It didn't feel like I was playing myself. Whether it's a comedy or drama, I just try to make it as realistic as possible.
You can't study comedy; it's within you. It's a personality. My humor is an attitude.
John F. Kennedy
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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