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Episode 14 of 69

Eddie Murphy

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station description Present Company with Krista Smith is a weekly show bringing you dynamic conversatio... read more
Present Company
Duration: 42:21
Comedy legend Eddie Murphy joins the show to reflect upon his trailblazing career and to discuss his new film “Dolemite Is My Name,” directed by Craig Brewer (“Hustle & Flow,” “Empire”), and written by Emmy and Golden Globe-winning writers Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (“Ed Wood,” “The P
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Comedy legend Eddie Murphy joins the show to reflect upon his trailblazing career and to discuss his new film “Dolemite Is My Name,” directed by Craig Brewer (“Hustle & Flow,” “Empire”), and written by Emmy and Golden Globe-winning writers Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (“Ed Wood,” “The People vs. O.J. Simpson”). “Dolemite Is My Name” tells the true story of comedian Rudy Ray Moore and his tireless effort to make a film about his stage persona, “Dolemite,” a pimp with a cane and an arsenal of obscene fables. The film has a star-studded cast, including Wesley Snipes, Chris Rock, Keegan-Michael Key, Snoop Dogg, and a breakout performance from Da’Vine Joy Randolph. “Dolemite is My Name” will premiere at the Toronto Film Festival and be in theaters and on Netflix this fall.In this interview, Murphy shares his plans to return to to host SNL for the first time in over three decades. And he discusses hitting the road again for a stand-up tour when he will also perform music that he has otherwise kept from the public. He also reveals that he would still consider hosting the Oscars and shares why he chose to dedicate “Dolemite Is My Name” to his late, beloved brother Charlie Murphy.
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I began by asking him about his legacy and what Chris Rock had to say about him, which I'm going to paraphrase here. But essentially, he said, if he hadn't seen Eddie Murphy on SNL, he just be a funny UPS driver in Queens. Is that what he said? He said that you change the way you did things that no one had ever seen any African American actor do on screen or on stage. That's what Chris said. That's very nice of him. What are you asking me that I'm just asking you just when you think about, Do you ever think about it, your career in terms of that, like all the things you did and and I think about it in watching trading places that I watched so many times in 48 hours is you look at those movies and sometimes when we go back in retrospect, a lot of things are you know, you're like, Oh, we live in such a different time now in terms of some of the profanity and slurs that were used them. But what made you so incredible in those parts is like you turn the tables you were in control and basically an all white world, especially in 48 hours and then in trading places. It just it's still It's like my gone with the Wind is still one of my top favorite movies of all time. Yeah, you know, But you don't set out to be those things. Providence kind of just made those things happen. It was like, uh, the movie business was like They see it a certain way, and then every couple of years, something will happen and they'll go, Oh, you could make movies like that. Oh, they'll go see that Like when James Dean first came on the scene before James Dean. All the movies used to be about grown ups, and all the themes were about growing up. Somewhat grown ups were going through, and and James Dean was the first one that you know the team. He was moved movies about teenagers and teenage angst and all that. He's the one that made the filmmakers all you could make movies about young people and they'll go see him and it just opened up this whole thing. Well, with African Americans, it was like with the exception of the black exploitation era when it was his bum Russia stuff, it was like, kind of like one at a time. One black person at the time was getting on screen. It was always grown ups, and it was always a certain type of character that you were playing a sidekick or, uh, buddy or something. And then I show up and I'm cast it as a buddy in The Sidekick in 48 hours. But I'm kind of like the catalyst. It's like I'm on if you look at it on the buddy. But if you listen to what's happening in movies like What's our next move, Convict? Now where do we go now? Tell me what we gotta do now, what it's like. Let's go over here and do that. Let's go. So I'm kind of like the first African American actor to be in movies where I go into the white world and take charge and be funny in it, you know, So that that was, uh, that opened up. You know the door for this, You know, everything that followed afterwards from, you know, everything from Morgan and Denzel and Wesley and whoever all came after that, that was all just it opened up all of that. How did you learn to deal with that pressure of being Mr Box office and delivering things and kind of being the Joan of Arc in a way of, ah, you know, forging the path e. I never felt like I was forging a path. I was just being who I waas and I was, you know, I was reacting to I was, whatever. Whatever came, whatever blew my way, you know, I just adapted to it. What's that? Little Forrest Gump? That, uh, feather. It's floating. That's who I was. I was that guy. Was that, you know, whichever way the wind blew me, you know, like that's why I said I didn't set out to do any of those things. It was providence. It was I didn't set out to do any of that. It was I got put into a situation and I did what I had to do in this situation, and it turned into whatever. So when I was in the middle of it, I didn't feel like I was opening any door, or I was being broke ground breaking or anything. When you get back, you know years afterwards and you look back on it and be like, Wow, you know, same with stand up. It's like when I started doing stand up comedy. There's, like 10 black comics in the whole country, you know? And it might be 40 comics in the whole country. When I started doing stand up and after my success and stand up, it kind of opened up the like, Stand up stopped being this fringe thing. It became this mainstream, you know, stand up comics. Now that could go to sell out the garden that you never even guys that never had TV show. I've never been in a movie and Stella Garden out, and it kind of like that whole thing started after after my stand up stuff and with movies. It was this big ocean of black talent, you know, that all started after you know my stuff.
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