by Ryan Meehan
Comedian Paul Scheer is well known for his acting work on shows such as NBC’s “30 Rock” and “Parks and Recreation”, but wears some pretty heavy hats in the entertainment industry outside of Rockefeller Plaza. He is the star of FX’s “The League”, a show about a fantasy football league that rings all too true if you happen to know anyone who is that immersed in that subculture. And he’s also the executive producer, star and creator of Adult Swim’s hilarious new show “NTSF:SD:SUV” that is a parody of the “CSI” and “Law and Order” crime-dramas which is well worth the watch. And he’s this week’s guest in 5 Questions.
FOH: What’s the biggest difference (on the sets) between the two television shows you’re involved with?
PS: Besides the fact that NTSF is totally CGI? Basically we are the televised version of AVATAR and we get no credit at all. I guess, the biggest difference is the script. On the League we work off a very comprehensive outline but 90% of the dialogue is improvised whereas on NTSF we are pretty much a scripted show that occasionally does a few improvised takes. But the with both shows we are always trying to improve the scenes, so we’ll be rewriting and fine tuning through the last take.
FOH: I’m looking at your resume here…several names that would be associated with the term “alternative comedy” seem to come up frequently…Sarah Silverman, Scott Aukerman from Mr. Show, everyone from Adult Swim at Cartoon Network, et cetera. Is that a label that you get a lot and if you do is it something you’re comfortable with?
PS: I guess. I actually heard Bob Odenkirk say something that was really interesting. I’ll paraphrase. The term Alternative comedy came up in the late 90’s to describe comedy that was different from the suit wearing, joke telling stand up comedians of that time. But now it seems like the casual nature that used to define “alt. comedy” has essentially become the mainstream. So even though that moniker has stuck, I don’t think it’s relevant anymore because the alternative has become the norm.
FOH: When NTSF:SD:SUV was in pre-production, were there any concerns that the shows you were parodying would try and come after you guys for any sort of copyright infringement or is parody usually protected well within the entertainment industry?
PS: Short answer, absolutely not. But look, if David Caruso visited the set and tried to pistol whip me. That would be amazing!
FOH: Do you get a lot of sports fans that see you on “The League” asking you information about their fantasy football teams?
PS: Yeah. Yeah but unfortunately trying to explain your fantasy team to someone is like trying to explain a dream. It’s just not that interesting to anyone but you.
FOH: What’s next for you in the twelve months that follow?
PS: Building a new version of Noah’s Ark and preparing for the apocalypse but besides that Season 2 of NTSF:SD:SUV::, more episodes of my Podcast HOW DID THIS GET MADE, which you can find on Earwolf.com or iTunes. Hopefully The League Season 4 and a few movies, specifically Piranha 3DD in Jan.
Paul’s Official Website (Powered by Yawning Babies): http://paulscheer.com/
FX’s official “The League” webpage: http://www.fxnetworks.com/shows/originals/theleague/
Cartoon Network’s official “NTSF:SD:SUV” webpage: http://www.adultswim.com/shows/ntsfsdsuv/index.html
Paul on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PaulScheerFB
Paul on Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/paulscheer
Paul on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QaW77Odo-bM
The third season of “The League” is currently airing on FX Thursdays at 10:30 EST/9:30 CST. New Episodes of Adult Swim’s “NTSF:SVU:SD” can be seen on Cartoon Network at 12:15 EST/11:15 CST.
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