Andy Dick ('Danny Roane: Part I')
'A Story of Art Imitating Life'
From the wildly creative mind of Andy Dick (TV’s “Less Then Perfect”) comes an untamed and hilarious new mockumentary 'Danny Roane: First Time Director.' Featuring an all-star cast that includes James Van Der Beek (The Rules of Attraction), Maura Tierney (TV’s “News Radio”), Kate Flannery (TV’s “The Office”), Michael Hitchcock (Waiting for Guffman) plus many other surprise appearances, the film - written and directed by Dick - is an unapologetic, politically incorrect, balls-out comedy about independent filmmaking.
After his drunken antics ruin his acting career, Danny Roane (Dick) decides to stage a comeback by sobering up and directing his own movie. Everything goes as planned until Roane suddenly falls back to his partying lifestyle while trying to finish his film about drug and alcohol abuse. Off the wagon and under pressure, Roane spirals out of control while his movie – and his career – sinks to new and unexpected lows.
In Part I of this two-part interview with Andy Dick, we first concentrated on the matter to hand: his film 'Danny Roane - First Time Director' and his upcoming projects. Here Andy tells me all about his directing techniques, his affiliation with Kathy Griffin, his friendship with Anthony Rapp, and about his upcoming new VH-1 exposé show - tentatively entitled 'You Don't Know Dick!' - and even his new music CD.
Andy, the film 'Danny Roane was 100% exactly what I expected from start to finish [open, informative, sad, annoying, rude, human, raw, touching, funny, naked, etc.] … is that a good thing or a bad thing though?! Andy Dick: "I'm wondering the same thing," he laughs.
Was the finished version exactly the way you had always envisioned it in your head? "To be honest with you, no. We worked with such a limited budget. I literally made that movie with no money. You talk about low budget this was ultra, ultra, ultra low budget. If I could do it again I would just make it look better. That's the only thing."
"But I love the story of it. The story of it was kinda the story of my life in a way. And here's something that I don't tell everybody, but during the making of that movie I wasn't in one my AA Hitler non-drinking periods. I was actually drinking! I would actually drink after we had cut. So even though I was playing this guy who was stone cold sober and then he fell off the wagon, I was actually drinking that whole time," he laughs.
Watching 'Danny Roane' there truly does seem to be a persona connection between both you and the late Andy Kauffman - a cuddly sitcom star struggling daily with the avant-garde, edgy performance artist "Yeah, well, what I do is very odd. I do screw with people. I screw with their brains and that's what drew me to Andy Kauffman in the first place. I don't think people have the capacity in their brain, in their emotional and mental capacity to do what I do. But now I'm getting the sense that there is this space that I fill."
"And lately I've been wanting to work again and I actually did take another TV gig. I'm now going to be doing a show on VH-1. I'm going to produce my own show. I've just decided that I really do want to work now, that I'm in a really good place."
Tell us more about this VH-1 project "It's a little secret right now. But there are just four episodes and if the people like it we'll continue to do it - and if like it! It's gonna let people in and they will see everything. How difficult it is to struggle with addictions, how fun it is to live my life. I don't want to bring my kids into this show too much as that could be hazardous to their mental health. But I do want people to see that side of me ... that I am a dad."
"And it's a side I didn't want people to see because I wanted to be more punk rock. I wanted people to be afraid of me and I wanted to be a rock star - to have that comedy rock star persona. And now I'm thinking that's maybe it's not working," he laughs. "It's like when you see Alice Cooper ... you know, it's 'straight from hell Alice Cooper' with all that make up on ... when he's out on the golf course playing golf like a normal old Jew! Because that's what he is," he laughs.
"Sometimes I just wish I was boring, but I'm not."
Do you have a title for the show yet? "No, I've got some mulling around in my head like 'You Don't Know Dick!' I have them in a little note book, because that's the last thing you think of."
When can we expect to see it on VH-1? "I don't know as I've never worked with VH-1. Sometimes they put it right up, but it'll be fun though."
In the 'Danny Roane' Cleopatra sketches you looked like Kathy Griffin … intentional or pure accident?! "Oh yeah, I hear that a lot. Every time I dress up as a woman - and I have this character called Daphne Aguilera which another movie that I'm actually working on - I look like Kathy Griffin. Which is more sad for her, I think<" he laughs. "I love that Cleopatra sketch. I just loved it."
"I haven't even seen my own movie in about six months," he laughs again. "It took a long time for it to come out. Isn't it a fun movie?"
Oh yes, from the media's perspective it's an open house to the wonderment that is Andy Dick! "Thank you ... and what a perfect quote," he laughs for the last time. "I think I’ve gotta start to quote you from now on!"
Is it true that the internet found out your home phone number and posted it back a year and a half ago?! "Yeah, that's an old one. And as soon as it happened I just left it on but turned it physically off and put it in a drawer. I actually left it on because I'd bought a plan that would cost more to turn it off. So then every once in a while I would check the messages or turn it on and just sit there and answer calls. It was fun. Sometimes I f**ked with them. There were times, and I felt bad about it, but there was one time that I literally had a girl crying! I scared her!"
Being that you are a childhood friend of actor Anthony Rapp was that the friendship angle you took to get him into this movie?! "He's a very good friend. We are extremely close and we lived in the same town. We did the same plays together. And I used to do short films with him. That was back in the day when video cameras just came on the market and this girl I was dating; her dad was a doctor and he was the first one in town to have a video camera. And it was the kind where you had to carry along the big machine next to you that attached to the camera."
"And so me and Anthony made a bunch of short movies. I also made Super 8 movies with Anthony. I still have those. I should post those online. There's one called 'The Lawnmower' where a lawnmower gets out of control and runs Anthony over! It was just silly, silly, silly stuff. But we did a lot of them ... we were working it. And he was a very successful child actor. By the time I already knew him he was already on Broadway like five times."
Will the band Andy Dick and the Bitches of the Century ever record again? 'Yes, there is one that's all done. I didn't like how my last one was handled. It was called 'Do Your Shows Always Suck?' which is two lives show: one of them I was drunk and one I was sober. You'll have to decipher which is which! It's a fun album, but I'm gonna distribute the next one on my own and really give it a good push."
"I've only bled out one of the songs on my MySpace website. It's called 'Murder Love Ballad #12.' It's deep but more fun loving. It's fun and poppy. Like you would picture Tom Waits being poppy, which he can be. So go to my MySpace website, the music MySpace ( www.myspace.com/andydick
) and listen to 'Murder Love Ballad #12' and you'll get a sense of me. But that's just one song as it's gonna be a very eclectic album. So yeah, thanx for asking."
Interviewed by Russell A. Trunk
Part II of the Andy Dick Story
'Danny Roane' DVD Purchase Link
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