Dane Cook: exclusive interview
Dane Cook is taking over America one city at a time and stopped his comic conquest to call us from the road.
A Boston boy by birth, Cook has been traversing the country for 19 years as a stand-up.
Cook's current Global Thermo stand-up tour is a phenomenal success and his movie career has been humming pretty loudly as well. The live CD, Isolated Incident, is currently the number one comedy album on iTunes and number three overall.
Amassing a legion of fans, Cook has found entertainment world success by doing his way, all the way. Never one to soften his humor, Cook is appreciated because of that raw honesty.
As an actor, Cook has starred opposite some of Hollywood's leading ladies including Jessica Simpson in Employee of the Month, Jessica Alba in Good Luck Chuck and his recent Kate Hudson hit, My Best Friend's Girl. His favorite actress will surprise!
Cook's parents recently passed away. He speaks to us exclusively about his appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show earlier this month. His Oprah appearance found Cook fulfilling a dream of his mother's.
Dane talks about his comedy, life in the spotlight and his secret to being one of comedy's biggest female draws. Oh, and his moisturizer advice is priceless!
Dane Cook: Hello Joel. It's Dane Cook.
SheKnows: Well, hello Dane Cook, how's things on the road?
Dane Cook: I'm very good.
SheKnows: Thanks for taking some time with SheKnows.com.
Dane Cook: Absolutely, top 10 sites for women in the world! It's really cool.
SheKnows: How you think being a stand-up influenced your acting ability in films and how acting in films aided your stand-up?
Dane Cook: Excellent question, certainly stand-up has informed film work in regards of once you've stood on a stage, especially for many years and been through that kind of scrutiny and the spanking machine of performing live, pretty much anything you do creatively is a little easier to get into the groove. I find when I'm on a film set, I find I have the confidence with having an idea and sharing it – whether my peers or the ensemble or director, it's informed my film career greatly. I think, in turn, when I take some time away from comedy and I do a film, even TV work, I find it's a great way to observe and absorb the world around you and it informs my stand-up. If you're living stand-up eight hours a day, then you're not living life – which is what you need to be doing in order to have thoughts and ideas that you want to share. So, breaking away from stand-up and doing films, seeing some great people and meeting different kinds of folks around the world -- that always brings new stories to the stand-up.
SheKnows: I see, on this tour, first congratulations on its success.
Dane Cook: Thank you!
SheKnows: I see you're looking to take it overseas. Have you performed your act overseas prior and if so, how is that a challenge for you with language and cultural barriers?
Dane Cook: I have taken my show overseas. Last year, for example, I took my show out with the OSU to Iraq and did shows for the troops. We went through Kuwait. Having been to say, Ireland, I was really overjoyed to find that more and more people because of the internet the world is smaller place, people can get the content with immediacy so that that wall – that culture gap that used to be there – isn't there. It's not like when people in Boston were wearing what people were wearing in California three years ago. Everybody's on the same page now, as I've been to Australia and around the world, speaking to fans on the internet in South Africa, never having performed there—now I'm going to South Africa. I'm also hooking back up with the USO and going to bases in Afghanistan and Germany, and Okinawa, Japan. Just see as much of the world and take comedy to places that my fans are requesting that I come to, but have never have.
Travel beauty tips
SheKnows: Whether touring or traveling to a film set, it's part of a job. But, do you enjoy travel?
Dane Cook: I do. I've learned a lot, especially from having five sisters. The one thing I've learned from women to travel – they know exactly how to prepare for flights. I've got all these creams and lotions that I put on my face, so I don't get too dry from the constant flying (laughs). There are certain waters that I'm allowed to drink (laughs). Just aesthetically, I know how to keep myself looking healthy from my female fans and tips I get through them, landing in a new city all the time on tour and knowing there's an arena with 10 or 20 thousand people that want to laugh. Nothing gets you more invigorated when you jump off a plane or wake up in a new city in a hotel room. There's a mass of people in this new place that I may be waking up in…that want to do one thing tonight – they want to laugh. It's the best feeling in the world.
The fanatic female fan base
SheKnows: You may have answered my question with your comment about having five sisters, but I wanted to address the fact you came up with a reputation as a "guy's" comic and entertainment presence, but all you have to do is look around in your audience and realize there are easily more women than men. What is that secret you have to appealing to women?
Dane Cook: You know what women respond to? They respond to when you don't placate or pander or work on them. The old-school getting lost in your eyes, the female fans that have followed me for years and reached out to me, they love that I take the real stuff about men and women and I don't candy it up. It's incredible, I'm the first person to admit, I'll go pretty hardcore sometimes and I've definitely put some stuff into my shows that I think, 'I have to say this because it's the thought that I have and I need to share it. I wonder if women will be turned off by what I'm about to say?' They come back for more and they appreciate the honestly. They really do, that's the best answer, and they appreciate seeing a guy in his raw form. The guy fans say 'you're a guy who I would hang out with' and the female fans say 'I appreciate that you don't candy coat it.' I think that's fair. I think that's part of the emoticon of the successful run that I've had.
Dane's favorite co-star
SheKnows: Of all the actresses you've shared time with, is there one or two even that were the most memorably for you and why?
Dane Cook: I am really so excited to talk about the friendship I have with Juliette Binoche. I worked with her on Dan in Real Life. Juliet is an incredible soul. She was really there for me on the film dealing with a critical time in my family life with my mom being sick with cancer and my dad also very ill at that time. I formed a friendship with her and an affinity on the film. After the film, most people tend to drift apart and you see each other at an award show or a banquet, but we kept in constant touch with each other. I'm really grateful for my friendship with Juliet.
SheKnows: Lastly, so many comics have celebrities that bear the brunt of their jokes. I can only imagine running into some of these people at parties and such, but Dane, you sat on Oprah's stage while she watched a clip of you lampooning her. Were you nervous at all?
Fulfilling mom's Oprah dream
Dane Cook: I got to tell you, Joel, I was not. I have dreamed about sitting on that show from the moment I was 15 or 16 when I told my mom my dreams. I told her what I wanted to be – I wanted to be a comedian and that I would go for the gold. I didn't want to just be another funny guy. I really want take it to the limit. She was so encouraging, my mom. She said, 'just do me one favor Dane. Just do Oprah.' (Laughs) She loved Oprah! My mother was Oprah obsessed. So you can imagine, Joel, for my 19 years of doing stand-up comedy -- 19 years -- I was willing it to someday sit on Oprah's show. My fear was never doing Oprah. When I was sitting up there, I just had to enjoy it.
SheKnows: OK, that was the look then. Because I thought it was completely bliss or utter nervous.
Dane Cook: I'm sure there was a little nervous energy finally being there, but she was so welcoming. It made it a breeze. She's just a unbelievable presence.
SheKnows: Thanks Dane, I don't want to take any more of your time, thank you so much and all the best for continued success. This was a true pleasure.
Dane Cook: Joel, it was a real kick. Thank you and yes, our SheKnows.com male bond (laughs) is complete!
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