George Lopez: Comedy & Clarity
More with WALKING WITH HERB star George Lopez! Risen talked with the actor about when he knew he was funny (and could actually make a living making people laugh), what changed his life completely, and the clarity that has come to him through the COVID pandemic.
Interviewed for Risen Magazine
Risen Magazine: When you grew up, were you always funny? When did you decide, or when did you think, I can make a living off of being a comedian?
George Lopez: Yeah. As a young kid, I would gravitate towards Cheech and Chong and I would watch The Tonight Show, The Partridge Family, all of these shows, Johnny Carson and you see these guys that are on there, Garry Shandling and I met in 1979 and all these guys, and Robin Williams was a friend of mine. And I think the odds of achieving anything is almost insurmountable, but the odds get bigger when you don’t work toward that goal. So I really just chipped away at it, and started to be around it, and started to be prepared and then in ’89 Arsenio Hall, who he and I are still very close, his show came out as the hottest show. I did 15 appearances in the five years that he was on. And then through the late nineties, a little dark period. And then I decided to clean my life up and make a change. And when I stopped worrying about what other people were doing and only worried about what I was doing, my life changed completely.
RM: I think it’s an interesting time right now, hopefully coming off the heels of quarantine and the world pandemic, as it’s had a lot of negative, but it’s also brought a lot of positive in the chance to kind of reflect on where we’re at and refocus, maybe decide if we’re living out passions or fine tune some stuff. For you, has the season brought any clarity around things you might’ve been questioning?
GL: Well, I don’t think that I would have ever taken a year off had this pandemic not happened. And it’s unfortunate because the climate of our society is very tense, very negative, a lot of people at each other for the color of their skin and the things that happened with the authority, the police and things. But you have to believe that as humans who will have the ability to change and to love, that from all of this, that we can get better. And this isn’t hopefully the way that our society is going to stay. I think eventually good will triumph over, and I wouldn’t say evil, but over negativity. And I think the love in people’s hearts is what we should be concerned about. Not whether someone belongs in a store, or someone belongs in a park, or someone belongs in this country.
WALKING WITH HERB premieres April 30, May 1, and May 3 for a three-night nationwide Fathom Events limited engagement.
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