AskMen.com: KATHY GRIFFIN...DOIN' IT JUST FOR A LAUGH

by AskMen.com editors (© 2007 AskMen.com)

Not too many actors have such an eclectic rsum as does Kathy Griffin; then again, there aren't too many women like her to begin with. Between appearances on ER, Seinfeld, Ellen and Mad About You, Kathy managed to secure a four-year stint on the popular sitcom Suddenly Susan. While she has been stockpiling the TV credits, she has been anything but idle.

For two years in a row, she co-hosted the Billboard Music Awards, which, in itself, led to an appearance in Eminem's "The Real Slim Shady" video (all thanks to Snoop Dogg's putting in a good word for her).

Over the years, Kathy has lent her voice to numerous animated series; The Simpsons being one of many. She has also written articles for magazines such as Glamour and George.

We caught up with Kathy as she was on her way to Montreal, Canada for the annual Just For Laughs festival...

Q: You will be in Montreal for this year's Just For Laughs festival. What will your show be about?

Well, it is my stand-up act, it's called "Telling Tales Out of School." It is my scandalous, fearless, tell-all, story oriented, telling it like it is act...

Q: Will this be your first time in Montreal?

No, I love Montreal... I think I love Montreal more than Montreal loves me... I love the food there. Food is my thing, I do not smoke or drink, so food is my vice.

Q: You don't like to give out your phone number, do you?

Bad experiences... I gave out my phone number to someone at People magazine, and every time they wanted to do a scandalous piece on Brooke Shields, they would call me...

Q: Your career is quite eclectic. You started with improv; was that something you wanted to do, or did you see it as a way to get into acting?

I grew up in Chicago and was a huge fan of The Second City, so when I moved to L.A., I was looking for anything that resembled that... then I started The Groundlings, so I went to a show and it was very much like Second City. I was so impressed that that same night I went backstage and I went up to the funniest person there. I told him I wanted to do that... I was bold and fresh... and the man I approached was Phil Hartman -- he was so sweet. I did that first and then moved to stand-up comedy.

Quick fact Before she hit the big-time, Kathy worked as a waitress, busperson, hostess, and even tried her hand at selling baby furniture.

Q: You broke through on Suddenly Susan but also had parts in Ellen, ER and other popular TV shows. Tell us about some of those experiences.

Ellen was a blast. When I was there, she threw out the entire script... she said that the script would not work, so they rewrote it and the next day it was all different.

Q: You also did ER...

I was the wacky character... I was dating Quentin Tarantino at the time; he was a pretty freaky guy...

Q: I would hate to see your children, forget Conan... just the imagery freaks me out...

Anyway, I was doing a character with George Clooney... I found Anthony Edwards to be an asshole. I thought he was crazy and malcontent... you would think his life was perfect...

Q: If you had to act alongside George Clooney, you would be ticked off too... oh wait, you acted alongside Brooke Shields... it all makes sense now! How did you get involved with Brooke Shields?

It was the usual, boring story. I did a tryout and got in...

What about the wild night she had with Brooke?

Q: And to think, we thought it was the result of a wild night of sex...

That was after the pilot...

Q: You have written for some girly magazines -- do you like to write?

I hate it, it is tedious... when I write for my act, it is very improvisational, I write bullet points, I cannot sit in front of a computer; that is not my style.

Q: You have been on the Late Show and done a bunch of talk shows... you have also co-hosted on Jimmy Kimmel Live; what was that like?

One night I was doing a show, and Corey Feldman was a guest. Jimmy says, "Corey is here, you know, he is mad at you. Apparently you said something bad about him in your act..." He came out and confronted me... Anyway, that is like Jimmy, he won't tell you what is about to go on.

Q: He is the best man on late night, no doubt. You were also on Seinfeld -- was heckling something you went through?

That wasn't about heckling. The first time I was on, I thought Jerry was a jerk... I asked him to sign something for a friend... he would not do it, then he did it... My act is based on my life... I did an HBO special... eventually Suddenly Susan was on after Seinfeld. I was worried, so I asked Larry David whether he would watch the HBO special. Larry said no way... Anyway, eventually I got a letter from Seinfeld joking about how he was offended by my act. I did not respond or anything, but then I got a call 'cause Larry David had written me in a show where all I did was make fun of Seinfeld... so when I went in to do that show, it was pretty funny... That time, he was really sweet...

Q: Any shows on the horizon?

I am working on something, but the process is slow. We have something in the pipeline, but we have to finish the pilot, test it, etc.

Q: Congrats. Do you think that who you are will play against you or for you?

(laughs) I think that people that get to know me all of a sudden like me more... like if you think that I hang out with Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore, think again.

Quick fact At age 18, Kathy's family decided to move to Los Angeles. It was then that Kathy joined the improvisational group, The Groundlings, and kept on working until she was discovered.

Q: You were in Eminem's video -- how did you get there?

One word: Snoop. We were on a show together and he eventually put in a good word to Dr. Dre. I asked Dre how I got the gig and he said that Snoop said I was really funny... I turned around to Dre and said, "Cool, tell Snoop I say 'hi'."

Q: What's Eminem like?

Well, he is one of those wiggers, so when black guys walk in the room, you do not know what he will do... I thought he was very clever, a hard worker... he is a moneymaking machine.

Q: Apart from doing Brooke Shields, if you were a man for a day, what would you do?

If I was man for a day, I could rule the world -- I know it.

Q: You can rule the world?

Oh come on, I make two-thirds of what you make.

Q: You should be happy with making even that... we let you out of the house, gave you the right to vote and now you complain?

I am a woman after all (laughs).

Q: Thanks for your time Kathy, and we wish you the best of luck with your professional life and personal life with Brooke Shields...

For more on Kathy and the Just For Laughs festival, check out HaHaHa.com.

Article Suggested By: Carl T., Portland, ND; © 2007 AskMen.com

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