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Brian Posehn Thinks 'The Sarah Silverman Program' Is Done

by Nick Zaino, posted Apr 13th 2010 2:03PM
Brian Posehn on 'The Sarah Silverman Program' Brian, one half of the gay couple Brian and Steve on 'The Sarah Silverman Program,' is a big fuzzy nerd. Which is okay, because that's also the personality of the man who plays him, Brian Posehn.

Posehn is a zombie-loving metalhead, a fan of cartoons and comic books, and a hilarious stand-up comedian. His new album, 'Fart & Wiener Jokes,' is out April 27th, featuring a shirtless, buffed up Posehn on the cover in a heap of comedy carnage (he says he wanted it to look like a Man O' War album).

We almost didn't get to see Brian and Steve again this year. Silverman and Comedy Central were at odds over the show's budget, until the LOGO network came in and threw in more money to make the production possible. Posehn isn't sure there will be a season four, but he's got plenty of other projects on tap (a possible spinoff for Brian and Steve, a faux reality show with party rockers Steel Panther, and a new Cartoon Network show).

I caught up with him by phone last week.

Brian Posehn's Fart & Wiener JokesOn the cover of the new album, you're standing Molly Hatchet-style amongst the severed heads of a bunch of comedians. Whose idea was that?

It was mine. And it's just me, I'm not taking myself seriously. I don't think I'm better than any of those people. I came up with the title first. Right away I knew it was going to be 'Fart and Wiener Jokes,' and it made me laugh. Obviously, I think I bring more to the table than fart and wiener jokes, but it was sort of a self-deprecating swipe at myself. Having them draw me full of muscles with a flag in the air on a pile of dead comedians, I laughed as soon as I thought of it.

I was glad to see you reading 'The Walking Dead' on the coach on 'The Sarah Silverman Program.' Are you looking forward to the TV show?

Oh, for sure. I've been a fan of that book since it came out. I'm friends with ['Walking Dead' writer/creator Robert] Kirkman. He was very happy to see me reading his book on the couch. One of the great things about the producers on 'Sarah,' is they really let my character kind of blur with who I really am. They've let me bring so many of the things I'm actually into, into my character Brian. Really the only difference now is that I sleep with this tiny blonde lady that's my wife, and on TV, Brian sleeps with this big guy that looks like him named Steve. Those are really the only differences between me and the character Brian.

I was going to ask if you and Steve [Agee] were both kind of playing yourselves.

We are, yeah. And that came from Sarah being great friends with us and knowing what we do. Neither one of us had to audition for the part. She asked us to do the pilot. And, of course, she cast her sister as her sister. I think she was just going for that. I think it pays off. I think it comes off in the show that we're all really good friends. When they cast our show they knew that we would all get along, they knew that we would all play well on each other because we do in real life. Nobody makes me laugh like Sarah.

Considering that this season almost didn't happen, was there a sense of urgency about writing and shooting this season?

I feel like, if anything, we all went, you know what? We're lucky to have this at a certain point. Let's just do what makes us laugh even more than season one and season two. And I feel like it gave us freedom - because I actually was involved in the writing process this year, I wrote the last episode of the season. And it's sort of, in a crazy season, I wrote the craziest episode. We broke a lot of rules we had for season one and season two. I love that about the show. It reminded me of working on 'Mr. Show,' where, any rules that other shows go by, we don't go by. Whatever's funny, if we like it today, we like it at the end of the day, and we like it again tomorrow, that's what's going to stick.

Steve Agee and Brian Posehn on 'The Sarah Silverman Program'After the "robot baby" episode, do you see you and Steve making any more attempts to have a kid, or moving to a state where they can be married?

Well, I think we're probably done with the show. But if we do a spinoff, which is something that's been talked about, I think it would be something that would come up again. Bringing it back to life, you know? It lived once, it's not impossible that it could live again.

Those are the rules of horror movies. There has to be a head somewhere buried under the shed. You can just see the lights come on again.

Right. Or even the hand. We'll let Wes Craven produce 'Bri and and Steve, The TV Show.'

Do you feel like this is the last season of the show, then?

Yeah. Yeah. But we felt that kind of going in. Just because it was so tough to get them to give us the money to do the third season, we had to jump through so many hoops. I don't know. I'm also a negative person. I'm not going to be the blue sky-er, you know. I feel like we're lucky to have done what we've done, and I would be very happy to come back and do a season four. But I'd also be completely surprised if it happened.

Do you enjoy working as a character actor? Is it something you'd like to break out of at some point?

No, I mean, I definitely enjoy it. I feel very lucky that I've been able to carve out any niche at all in this business. It's so hard to get into. And I feel like parts like Brian are so much better than the parts I was offered five years ago.

The fact that my character has a name - I've been "creepy clerk working at the porn store" in a movie, whatever it is, or just "priest" - so to get a name, and to be able to actually carry a story like I do on 'Sarah,' that's been one of the best acting jobs I've had. I think it's a great jumping off point, I'll be able to do more things where I get to stretch a little bit and actually act.

Sarah Silverman and Brian Posehn of 'The Sarah Silverman Program'Do you have any other movies or TV work lined up?

No, just stand-up. That's my main thing. If we don't shoot this summer, if we don't shoot this fall, I'll just stay on the road and then look for other shows that I fit into or create my own thing, which is a possibility. Also, I'm producing a show that I'm not in. I'm in the middle of doing that, a pilot for Comedy Central. I've always been really good at staying busy. Even while I'm working I'm looking at what the next thing is.

What's the pilot?

I'm doing a pilot for Comedy Central with the band Steel Panther. They're faux heavy metal. They started as kind of a tribute band out here, or a cover band, and they're funny guys, and they just sort of morphed into their own thing. I shot a video for them last year called 'Death to All But Metal,' and I have a pilot with them [see the very NSFW video here, with a cameo from Sarah Silverman].

It's going to be like a fake reality show of this band that's like a fish out of water, they're stuck in the '80s still, but it's 2010, or 2011, by the time we get the show out. It's kind of what comes from these guys who are trying to bring heavy metal back. Not that heavy metal doesn't exist, but they're trying to bring party rock back.

I've [also] got a new show that I'm doing a voice on for next year. It's a new Cartoon Network show by Genndy Tartakovski who did 'The Clone Wars' and 'The Powerpuff Girls,' he created this new show called 'Symbiotic Titan.' I guess I am typecast, I'm playing a robot again. But this one's not horny. It's still a fun robot character to do. It's these teenagers who come from this other planet with the robot and they're forced to go to a high school and sort of fit in. And the robot goes with them to this high school and pretends to be a nerd.

I suppose that's played more for comedy than action.

It's both, it's actually more of an action show where the comedy is sort of secondary. That was a lot of fun to record.

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Thank god, this tv show is god awful.
electronic cigarette

April 15 2010 at 2:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

If Posehn wasn't the man before putting out a Manowar mock-up cover then he is now. I'm bummed to hear that the show's coming to an end tho. Sarah Silverman is tied with Ellyn Daniels for my favorite female comedian. Oh well, I'll keep my fingers crossed for a Wes Craven produced show with Brian and Steve fighting zombies.

April 15 2010 at 1:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

oops that should be CC no CS

April 13 2010 at 9:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I still thought the show was funny but kept forgetting it on since CS moved it to midnight with only one airing and no repeats like everything else on the channel

April 13 2010 at 9:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This is the guy that was so funny in "Just Shoot Me"?

April 13 2010 at 3:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

SSP done? i feel sorry for the actors/comics, as i they are all brilliant. i think that show had so much potential, but lost its way some how. i'm disappointed in the eps i've seen of Season 3.

April 13 2010 at 2:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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