Ed Begley, Jr. with Emerson College

Actor


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his one-hour interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Ed Begley, Jr. talks about being cast on St. Elsewhere, and recalls his father, Ed Begley, Sr. allowing him to make the choice to be an actor. He recounts realizing he had a flair for comedy at a young age, as well as his very first acting job on My Three Sons. Begley describes his early standup act with a young Michael Richards, and expounds on his philosophy of comedy, and on his style. He touches on his favorite comedians, as well as the importance of managers and agents in a comedian’s career. He outlines his long-standing environmental advocacy, and offers advice to aspiring comedians. Jenni Matz and Bill Dana conducted the interview on May 31, 2005 in Los Angeles, CA.

"The advice I give actors and actresses when they ask me, 'What do you think? Should I go in the business?' I always tell them, 'Absolutely not.' If you have to ask that question, the answer is no."

Highlights
Ed Begley, Jr. on being cast on St. Elsewhere
01:37
Ed Begley, Jr. on his comedic influences, and on his philosophy of comedy
06:34
Ed Begley, Jr. on his environmental advocacy
07:58
Ed Begley, Jr. on advice for aspiring performers
05:05
Ed Begley, Jr. on the creative team behind St. Elsewhere
01:36
Ed Begley, Jr. on using television and movies for social commentary or political messages, and on the healing power of comedy
05:39
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On starring on St. Elsewhere, and on his father's stance on his acting career; on appearing in films for director Christopher Guest; on his first acting job, on My Three Sons
09:22
On deciding he wanted to be a comedic actor, and that he had the ability to make people laugh; on his early stand-up act with Michael Richards, and on his early comedic style; on his comedic influences, and on his philosophy of comedy
14:33
On the "rules" of comedy, and on then-favorite comedians, and managers of comedians; on a performer or actor controlling his image or how he's seen by the public, and on improving as an actor or comedian; on his environmental advocacy
19:45
On actors and performers using their fame to advocate political causes, and how he handles that responsibility for his environmental advocacy; on advice for aspiring performers; on guest-starring on Maude, and on The Steve Allen Show being his favorite show
18:29
Shows

Maude

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Ed Begley, Jr. on guest-starring on Maude, and on The Steve Allen Show being his favorite show
01:18

My Three Sons

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Ed Begley, Jr. on his first acting job, on My Three Sons
01:36

St. Elsewhere

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Ed Begley, Jr. on cast members from The Steve Allen Show guest-starring on St. Elsewhere
02:02
Ed Begley, Jr. on being cast on St. Elsewhere
01:37
Ed Begley, Jr. on the creative team behind St. Elsewhere
01:36

Steve Allen Show, The (1956-61)

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Ed Begley, Jr. on cast members from The Steve Allen Show guest-starring on St. Elsewhere
02:02
Ed Begley, Jr. on guest-starring on Maude, and on The Steve Allen Show being his favorite show
01:18
Topics

Advice

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Ed Begley, Jr. on advice for aspiring performers
05:05

Creative Influences and Inspiration

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Ed Begley, Jr. on his comedic influences, and on his philosophy of comedy
06:34

Pivotal Career Moments

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Ed Begley, Jr. on his comedic influences, and on his philosophy of comedy
06:34

Television Industry

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Ed Begley, Jr. on advice for aspiring performers
05:05
Professions

Actor

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Ed Begley, Jr. on a performer or actor controlling his image or how he's seen by the public, and on improving as an actor or comedian
04:35
Ed Begley, Jr. on advice for aspiring performers
05:05

Comedian

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Ed Begley, Jr. on the "rules" of comedy, and on then-favorite comedians, and managers of comedians
07:06

Performers

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Ed Begley, Jr. on the "rules" of comedy, and on then-favorite comedians, and managers of comedians
07:06
Ed Begley, Jr. on a performer or actor controlling his image or how he's seen by the public, and on improving as an actor or comedian
04:35
Ed Begley, Jr. on advice for aspiring performers
05:05
Genres

Comedy Series

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Ed Begley, Jr. on his first acting job, on My Three Sons
01:36
Ed Begley, Jr. on guest-starring on Maude, and on The Steve Allen Show being his favorite show
01:18

Medical Dramas

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Ed Begley, Jr. on starring on St. Elsewhere
06:45

Talk Shows

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Ed Begley, Jr. on guest-starring on Maude, and on The Steve Allen Show being his favorite show
01:18
People

Ed Begley

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Ed Begley, Jr. on his father, Ed Begley, and on deciding to get into acting
01:28

Christopher Guest

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Ed Begley, Jr. on appearing in films for director Christopher Guest
01:01

Michael Richards

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Ed Begley, Jr. on his early stand-up act with Michael Richards, and on his early comedic style
06:17

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