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From the writer and director of Knocked Up and the producer of Freaks and Geeks comes a collection of intimate, hilarious conversations with the biggest names in comedy from the past thirty yearsâincluding Mel Brooks, Jerry Seinfeld, Jon Stewart, Sarah Silverman, Harold Ramis, Seth Rogen, Chris Rock, and Lena Dunham.
Before becoming one of the most successful filmmakers in Hollywood, Judd Apatow was the original comedy nerd. At fifteen, he took a job washing dishes in a local comedy clubâjust so he could watch endless stand-up for free. At sixteen, he was hosting a show for his local high school radio station in Syosset, Long Islandâa show that consisted of Q&As with his comedy heroes, from Garry Shandling to Jerry Seinfeld. They talked about their careers, the science of a good joke, and their dreams of future glory (turns out, Shandling was interested in having his own TV show one day and Steve Allen had already invented everything).
Thirty years later, Apatow is still that same comedy nerdâand heâs still interviewing funny people about why they do what they do.
Sick in the Head gathers Apatowâs most memorable and revealing conversations into one hilarious, wide-ranging, and incredibly candid collection that spans not only his career but his entire adult life. Here are the comedy legends who inspired and shaped him, from Mel Brooks to Steve Martin. Here are the contemporaries he grew up with in Hollywood, from Spike Jonze to Sarah Silverman. And here, finally, are the brightest stars in comedy today, many of whom Apatow has been fortunate to work with, from Seth Rogen to Amy Schumer. And along the way, something kind of magical happens: What started as a lifetimeâs worth of conversations about comedy becomes something else entirely. It becomes an exploration of creativity, ambition, neediness, generosity, spirituality, and the joy that comes from making people laugh.
Loaded with the kind of back-of-the-club stories that comics tell one another when no one else is watching, this fascinating, personal (and borderline-obsessive) book is Judd Apatowâs gift to comedy nerds everywhere.
Praise for Sick in the Head
âI canât stop reading it. . . . I donât want this book to end.ââJimmy Fallon
âAn essential for any comedy geek.ââEntertainment Weekly
âFascinating . . . a collection of interviews with many of the great figures of comedy in the latter half of the twentieth century.ââThe Washington Post
âOpen this book anywhere, and youâre bound to find some interesting nugget from someone who has had you in stitches many, many times.ââJanet Maslin, The New York Times
âAn amazing read, full of insights and connections both creative and interpersonal.ââThe New Yorker
âFascinating and revelatory.ââChicago Tribune
âAnyone even remotely interested in comedy or humanity should own this book.ââWill Ferrell
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