Seth Meyers talks ‘SNL,' his funny family and more
Seth Meyers, the anchor of “Saturday Night Live’s” faux newscast, Weekend Update, is bringing his stand-up act to the inaugural Moontower Comedy and Oddity Festival tonight, which gave me the chance to speak with him about “SNL,” touring and his childhood with comedically permissive parents.
Austin American-Statesman: Have you ever spent any time in Austin?
Meyers: I came down for SXSW for the film “MacGruber” which, I think, if you remember, went on to win a bunch of Oscars. I wouldn’t check; take my word for it. I know you’re too busy to fact-check everything I say.
Where are you from?
I was born in Evanston (Illinois). I kind of grew up in New England and then went back to school in Evanston at Northwestern (Illinois University). My parents had a great experience at Northwestern, and I wanted to go somewhere with a good film program, so it worked out.
Your brother, Josh, is also an actor. What was your childhood like? Were you funny kids?
Well, we had a really funny dad and a really beautiful mother, and we realized that making people laugh probably meant that you could date way above your station. But our parents introduced us at a very young age to stuff like “SNL” and Steve Martin albums and Monty Python and Richard Pryor — probably earlier than they should have. Comedy became sort of the currency in our household and making people laugh was really important. Then, by the time my brother and I were in high school we were sort of doing comedy nights together, and then he ended up coming to Northwestern as well. We’ve actually worked together a lot over the years.
So your sense of humor came from your dad?
It’s funny … even though we share a sensibility about what’s funny, we all tried to find real estate that wasn’t taken up yet. My father is an incredible storyteller; he sort of commands the room. So, Josh and I tended to be a little quieter in our comedy and developed the “quiet undercut” from those years.
You spent a lot of time training in and performing improv. Does that help you on Weekend Update?
The only time it helps is when you have a guest out, when someone like Bill Hader or Bobby Moynihan or Kristen Wiig, who also have improv backgrounds, are out there. You kind of know that if you veer away from the script a little bit they’re going to be cool with it. But outside of that, when you’re joke-telling, it’s the absence of improv because we spend so much time getting those words just right that the last thing you want to do when you get out there is sort of let it curve a different way.
Message Sent Successfully
Be Sure to Check Out Our Top Headlines
- 36901Oklahoma weather: Crews work to clear storm damage in Oklahoma City as the state braces for severe weather Sunday.
- 36295Oklahoma tornadoes: 'It took it all'
- 32626Oklahoma Severe Storm Updates
- 8549Wild hogs continue to be a growing menace across Oklahoma
- 5487OKC Thunder GM Sam Presti won't amnesty Kendrick Perkins
- 4132Oklahoma City Thunder: What could Serge Ibaka learn from Hakeem Olajuwon?
- 4021Oklahoma State football: Limiting Wes Lunt's transfer options makes Mike Gundy look bad
- 3510College football: Coaches, athletes weigh in on NCAA's suspended recruiting proposals
- 3369George Nigh has long been 'Four' Oklahoma
- 3261Brittney Griner: Kim Mulkey said keep quiet on sexuality
Back to share with a friend form.
Add More Recipients