Will Forte on 'SNL' Sketches: "You Go In Knowing There's a Chance of Total Failure"
"You do something called 'Fart Face,' you're not expecting it's going to win any artistic awards."
"The hardest thing was to have [executives] buy into long stretches of time with no talking," Will Forte told The Hollywood Reporter during its Comedy Actor Emmy Roundtable, discussing the development process for his Fox show, The Last Man on Earth. "We were very honest about our intentions from the beginning. The nerve-wracking part was just thinking that, at some point, they would force us to go against their promises of letting us do what we wanted to do."
The biggest notes the show's makers were given included: "have more talking [and] don't show a dead body" — the presence of the latter being something Forte thought was important for a story set in a postapocalyptic world.
The Saturday Night Live alum also spoke about some of the worst sketches he created while on the show, saying, "We would do some weird stuff, so I think you go in knowing there's a chance of total failure." He referenced one piece in particular that he did with Bill Hader and Josh Brolin, called "Fart Face." "You do something called 'Fart Face,' you're not expecting it's going to win any artistic awards."
Before Forte got his start in comedy, he was doing what his dad did: working as a financial consultant. "It was just really tricky because I started thinking I wanted to go into comedy, but it was really scary to break away from what I had thought I should be doing with my life and go for this crazy thing."
He recalled the support he received from his dad once he broke the news to him, with his dad saying, "I don't know why you were trying to do [financial consulting] in the first place."
Forte joined fellow comedians Thomas Middleditch (Silicon Valley), Jordan Peele (Key & Peele), Ricky Gervais (Derek), Fred Armisen (Portlandia) and Don Cheadle (House of Lies) for the roundtable, where the actors discussed how they developed their humor and how they use it today.
The full Comedy Actor Roundtable can be seen on Close Up With The Hollywood Reporter when it premieres Sunday, Aug. 23, at 11 a.m. ET/PT on SundanceTV and HollywoodReporter.com.
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