Writer-director Kevin Smith has always stolen the spotlight in his own movies, casting himself as the taciturn, chain-smoking Silent Bob in indie hits such as "Clerks" and "Chasing Amy."
His recent foray into mainstream filmmaking, the Bruce Willis comedy "Cop Out," was a flop, but Smith isn't sulking: He's busy co-hosting his popular online "Smodcast" and going on tour as a one-man show, holding profanity-ridden Q&A sessions. Before coming to Long Island for "An Evening With Kevin Smith: Silent Bob Speaks," he spoke with Newsday by phone from his home in Los Angeles. An edited, family-friendly version of the conversation follows.
What's the occasion for this show?
Jeff Hyman is the guy who books all my gigs, and he said, "Are you up for the Westbury Theatre?" I said, "Is that the Westbury Music Fair?" I was enchanted, because, growing up in New Jersey, I would always see these ads for events that were never in my hometown. And one of these magical places was the Westbury Music Fair. Does the stage still rotate? If it rotates for me, that's double bang for the buck: I love trying to be funny in front of people, but I also love getting a workout.
You tend to be fairly candid for someone who works in the film industry. Have any of your remarks come back to haunt you?
One time, Ben said, "Dude, would you stop talking about me in your Q&A's?" I said, "I say a lot of loving stuff!" He said, "You say all the nonloving stuff, too. You say the loving stuff so you can get away with the nonloving stuff!" And my wife, too, has gotten ticked from time to time. She said, "I can't believe you told the story about the first time we had sex." I didn't have the heart to tell her it was already on the DVD, and people had heard it for years.
You've said you're taking a break from filmmaking because you like doing your podcast so much.
I get to generate on a regular basis, and I can just put stuff up there. There's no pressing need to do a two-hour movie, it's instant gratification. People are like, yeah, but that don't pay. I'm like, I don't do anything for the money! If that were the case, I would have done a lot more movies like "Cop Out."
WHO Kevin Smith
WHEN | WHERE Sunday at 8 p.m. at NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd. Find available tickets