Fourteen profiles of and conversations with the well-known American actor, director, and screenwriter
Albert Brooks: Interviews brings together fourteen profiles of and conversations with Brooks (b. 1947), in which he contemplates, expounds upon, and hilariously jokes about the connections between his show business upbringing, an ambivalence about the film industry, the nature of fame and success, and the meaning and purpose of comedy. Throughout all these encounters, Brooks expresses an unwavering commitment to his own artistic expression as a filmmaker and a rejection of mainstream conventions. With his questioning and critical disposition, nothing seems certain for Albert Brooks except for the integrity of art and the necessity for a wry skepticism about the incongruities of everyday life in corporate America.
Brooks is neither a Hollywood insider nor an outsider. He’s somewhere in-between. Since the early 1970s, this inimitable actor-writer-director has incisively satirized the mass media system from within. After initial work as an inventive comedian, both live and on network television, Brooks contributed six shorts to the first season of Saturday Night Live, which earned him a cult following for their avant-garde form and sensibility. These were followed by his feature debut, Real Life, the first of only seven films—including Modern Romance, Lost in America, and Defending Your Life—that Brooks has directed to date. His limited output reflects not only the difficulty in financing idiosyncratic films, but equally the exacting seriousness which Brooks has in making audiences laugh and think at the same time.