When Larry met Ricky

Ricky Gervais interviews Larry David 18 May 2006

JERRY SEINFELD AND LARRY DAVID, CREATORS OF SEINFELD (1989-1998)

Anyone out there who is a fan of Ricky Gervais and Larry David – and I suggest the two would have very similar supporters – can catch an interview by one of the other on http://www.youcube.com.

Type Larry David in the search box and up come five approximately 10-minute segments of Gervais interviewing David at his Santa Monica office.

David, co-creator of Seinfeld (1989-98) and creator of Curb Your Enthusiasm (2000 -), is as relaxed and honest as the character he plays in the HBO success that has become a cult hit around the world. The show’s frank language probably precludes it getting a run on prime time television but, I believe, is the funniest-ever US-made sitcom. It is topped globally only by Fawlty Towers (1975-79).

Gervais, creator of the British success The Office (2001-03), itself loved and admired by a plethora of discerning comedy fans, was given the brief of touring the US and interviewing his heroes.

His mission takes him to David’s office and much of the interview is interspersed with clips from Seinfeld, Curb Your Enthusiasm and, to a lesser extent – because Gervais is the interviewer – The Office.

RIGHT HEEL: GERVAIS AS DAVID BRENT IN THE OFFICE

The two chat harmoniously, reveal their methods of developing comedy sketches and character and have a definite affinity as to interviewing styles of journalists.

Surprisingly, David says he isn’t the character that appears on Curb Your Enthusiasm, a man he is inside but cannot be in public. For all the bravura of TV’s Larry David, the real Larry David is more forgiving and doesn’t rush into conflict like his alter ego.

Both comedians also reveal a certain elitism towards their audience and Gervais says he looks at some people while he is doing stand up and is relieved when they don’t laugh even if the rest of the crowd is in stitches.

He feels this because he didn’t want these people to laugh at that bit, knowing they are the ones who will really appreciate it when he is really funny.

David goes further, admitting at one gig when he was young, he looked at the audience and walked off. He says I knew they weren’t going to like me.

Sorry if I’ve ruined some of it for you but you’ll get a lot more out of it.

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