Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Live From New York it's Saturday Night! Joe Piscopo Talks About His Days On Saturday Night Live

When you first start to talk with Joe Piscopo, you get a sense right away of just how talented and special he is. He's very engaging, a Jersey guy at heart. He's warm, friendly, polite, and he's one of those guys that reminds you of your oldest friends. Piscopo chats with you like he's known you his entire life.

Immediately, he makes it very clear that family is everything to him. He loves radio, he loves music. He plays a few different instruments. Piscopo is also quick to point out and pay tribute to those that are also legends, beside himself. When I first talk to him I immediately bring up one of my all time favorite comedy sketches in the history of comedy, his Jerry Lewis Thriller parody from his '84 HBO special. He's grateful, and we spend about ten minutes talking about Jerry Lewis, even sinking down into discussing Jerry's infamous unreleased film from 1974, THE DAY THE CLOWN CRIED.

Being who Piscopo is... He asks some questions about me. I tell him where I grew up. He gets excited. He tells me he's played "my home turf'" often under several circumstances, and loves it. He tells me my birthplace has great people, good food, fun places and beautiful women.

Piscopo is a freakin' legend. Starting out in radio and moving into improvisation comedy in his early 20's, he's been around the block. He with others, came up the ranks to become contemporary comedy juggernauts. Two generations later, and today everyone understands these guys are now the definition of comedy. Piscopo quite possibly had the most difficult job in television history when in 1980 he was hired for America's favorite television show, Saturday Night Live. He, alongside his friend and comic icon Eddie Murphy and others were brought on board to replace a cast that included Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Gilda Radner, and Chevy Chase. It didn't go so well. NBC canned everyone but Piscopo and Murphy. It was up to Piscopo and Murphy to save the show. Ever since that day Piscopo has been the stuff of legends.

Piscopo left SNL in 1984 to pursue film work. He went on to star in several comedy and cult film classics such as WISE GUYS (1986), JOHNNY DANGEROUSLY (1984), and DEAD HEAT (1988). A proud Italian at heart, he's got the Italian New Jersey mannerisms you'd expect. But what makes Piscopo so great, is that after a few minutes of speaking with him, you're in his world feeling very comfortable, and it makes you wish you yourself were Italian, and able to get away with saying "Forget about it" as he does.  Piscopo suggests that he'd rather be considered an entertainer over a comedian. The three heroes of his life: His father [a lawyer], Jerry Lewis, and the old man, Francis Albert Sinatra. Piscopo would become known for his dazzling and hilariously on-the-money impressions of Lewis and Sinatra. The later of which Piscopo continues to impersonate to this very day on stage all over the good ole' USA.

There's a famous story about the first time Piscopo met Frank Sinatra. It was during one of the Friars' Club Roasts in New York City in the mid '80s.  Piscopo walked up on stage at the Friars' Club. On one side sat Frank Sinatra. Piscopo confronted Sinatra in front of the audience. He expressed his admiration and impersonated him. Sinatra told the audience and Piscopo, "That's pretty good."  Piscopo then got brave and asked Sinatra, " Mr. Sinatra... Can I call you Frank?" Sinatra responded, "No." The audience exploded with laughter, and the moment has become the highlight of a now famous night of comedy. From here, Sinatra would dub Piscopo the "Vice-Chairman Of The Board".   TV Store Online spoke to Piscopo and here's how it went:

TV STORE ONLINE: Mr. Piscopo, can I call you Joe?

PISCOPO:  No...laughing...sure.

TV STORE ONLINE:  One thing I noticed immediately on your website was your bio. It reads and I'm paraphrasing here..."After a stint as a disc jockey and dinner-theater performer, Joe Piscopo turned to comedy?" I was curious to see how one turns to comedy? Weren't you born a comedian?

PISCOPO: No...I was a born wiseguy. I was a kid that was causing trouble. I was annoying the teachers. Back then, I wanted to really just be a blue collar entertainer, being up on stage and sweating it out, making money, and having fun! I had to figure out how to do that though. So I went to college down in Florida, and got a degree in radio. I love radio. I'm a junky for radio. Then I went up to Pennsylvania and got involved in dinner theater. I was doing four shows for fifteen dollars a weekend. Then I got a job in New Jersey on the radio, and I got involved in New York City improve. It was so exciting. I cut my chops in New York City doing stuff at the improv comedy club.

TV STORE ONLINE: You being a comedy legend yourself... Didn't you come up the ranks with a bunch of others?

PISCOPO:  Larry David was hanging around, Jerry Seinfeld was hanging out. Robert Klein was there. Robin Williams was just breaking. Rodney Dangerfield was getting really huge. They need to make a movie about this time. It was the stuff of legends, let me tell you. Richard Pryor was coming in and checking it out. Andy Kaufman was around. Kaufman was a genius. Bette Midler, man.. I got to play piano for her once. It was really really wild. I mean I'm a kid, twenty-four years old, trying to get a break. It was crazy. It was rock n' roll.

TV STORE ONLINE: How did you get interested in playing music?

PISCOPO:  My mother. She really pushed me to play the piano when I was a kid. I gave her a hard time. I was kid, and all I wanted to do was be out at Yankee Stadium watching baseball. But I stuck with it, and I'm really thankful to my mom for it.

TV STORE ONLINE: Growing up did you have any musical influences as you progressed in music?

Eddie Murphy & Joe Piscopo
Saturday Night Live

PISCOPO:  Frank Sinatra of course. That comes from my dad. At a young age, I knew who Frank was, and Tony Bennett. I had no problems telling the difference between the voices of Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett on the radio. You can't mistake the old man's voice. But I loved rock n' roll as well. For me it was Jimi Hendrix all the way. What a genius. I loved the Animals, and The Beatles, and a lot of those hardcore male blues voices as well.

TV STORE ONLINE: Do you remember your very first film role?

PISCOPO:  Well...I'm not sure what you're getting at! Are you talking about that really really bad movie I did up in upstate New York...What was that called again?

TV STORE ONLINE:  Well, I was trying to steer you towards your walk on role in the 1976 Dino De Laurentiis produced KING KONG...

PISCOPO:  Yeah I know...laughing...Oh my god! I can't believe we're talking about this... Let me just say, that I love the 1933 KING KONG. I had heard a rumor from a friend about it. So my friend and I decided to go upstate for it. It was funny. Cause for a little while I was putting it on my resume. People would ask me, "What did you do in KING KONG?", and I'd say, "Well I had just a small role...." laughing...I just ran down the street in one scene...laughing...I don't think you can even see me...laughing

Joe Piscopo on SNL
TV STORE ONLINE:  Moving onto SNL.... I was curious to see if you or the cast coming in with you had any concerns that you wouldn't be as good as the cast you were replacing? I mean you guys were replacing Aykroyd, Belushi, and Radner.

PISCOPO:  I had this friend who was working on SNL as a lighting grip or something. He got me a audition for the show. I was cocky back then man. I mean, I was doing pretty good. I was a working actor acting in commercials. So I auditioned and got it on the spot. It was wild man. I was so cocky. So when I found out how much money they wanted to pay me, I lost interest. And then I started thinking, how do you replace someone like Gilda Radner? You can't. I mean, I was already making more money than what they were offering me, just by doing commercials. But after a few discussions with my friend, he convinced me to just do the show.

And let me just tell you, those first ten freakin' shows were just brutal. I wouldn't wish that experience on anyone. The cast, including myself, well we all thought we were killing America's favorite TV show! And then, they stopped the show. They fired everyone, but myself and Eddie Murphy! The show got some restructure. Michael O'Donoghue came in to shake it up. Bill Murray came in, and we started to battle our way back little by little.

Piscopo  (Center)  and SNL cast

TV STORE ONLINE:  What's your writing process? How do you write a sketch or joke for Saturday Night Live?

PISCOPO:  I have to find something that intrigues me. But I'll tell you what...I tried to take ideas from television and exaggerate them. I understood television. I used to write a lot with Eddie Murphy. We would riff our ideas off of each other. Eddie is a genius. So we used to flush a lot of stuff out, sometimes it was like starting from a blank canvas, and that's hard to do. But we'd come up with something, and then start bouncing it off of other in the office. You learn it as you go.

TV STORE ONLINE: Was the SNL process comfortable to you? The writing style, the approval process, the 9pm rehearsal, then the live show at 11:30 pm?

PISCOPO:  Yeah, totally. I came from improv. I'd been improving on my feet for a while by then. When I first started...I can remember being on stage for a room of half sleeping drunks. So it wasn't a difficult process to handle. I actually live for it. You do it last minute. Do or die. A sketch you think that isn't gonna be included in the show during the rehearsal, all of sudden is now gonna be in the live show, and you just have to get through it. It's all last minute, on your feet stuff. I live for that type of stuff. My whole life is like that too. My children... My ex-wives...laughing...It's all been last minute and spur of the moment. 

TV STORE ONLINE:  Of all the characters you did on Saturday Night Live do you have a favorite?

Joe Piscopo In Saturday Night Live era
PISCOPO:  The sports guy. I'm a sports fan, so it was just fun. I also loved doing the music with the band, as Frank Sinatra. I mean, C'mon... I'm like twenty-four years old and playing with the Saturday Night Live band, doing the music of the old man.

TV STORE ONLINE:  In your Saturday Night Live days... Who was the best guest host you ever worked with?

PISCOPO:  That's easy. I'm a television baby you know. So when Jerry Lewis hosted, that was it. Robin Williams was great too. Especially great. Robin Williams, even Eddie Murphy would do this... These guys would open up for you, and let you do your thing. Those guys are comic geniuses. Robin and Eddie. Working with Jerry Lewis was wonderful. All week he was there with Eddie and I, it was a love fest.

TV STORE ONLINE: Doing Sinatra...Can you remember the first time you heard that he was a fan? What goes through your mind when you find something out like that?

PISCOPO:  Well, I had been doing little bits of the old man at the improv. Saturday Night Live asked me to do the character and I told them, '"No Thanks." But they started to bug me about it . I just didn't wanna do it, out of respect to him. He was my father's hero. So I got offered to do this comedy type music album as Frank. So I did that. Then I sent him a copy of the album, and wrote him a big letter expressing my admiration. But I never heard back on it.

Joe Piscopo as Frank Sinatra
on Saturday Night Live
A little while after that, I got invited to the Friars' Club for a roast. I was so nervous. I've got the old man on my left, Dean Martin on the right. Milton Berle was there. Dick Cavett did the introduction. I'm just a kid up there. So I'm up there, and I said to the old man on stage in front of everyone, "My favorite song of yours is "I Don't Stand A Ghost Of A Chance With You..." So I started to sing it to the old man in his voice. After I get through the line, Sinatra says to everyone "That's pretty good." So into the mic I said "Mr. Sinatra, can I call you Frank?" He looks at me and says, "No." I swear to god the room erupted. It got the biggest laugh of the whole night. You can't mess with the master. It was just amazing.

Then his people would call me up randomly. And they'd say to me, " Mr. Sinatra needs you to go here or there." So they'd pick you up and in luxury too...You'd go to promote whatever it was for him because you wanted to be in his presence.

We'd talk sometimes too. But I was always just really in awe and scared of him.  So I ended up usually, just telling him how great he was, or thanking him for whatever. And he always just said "Don't mention it pal-eee." I heard from friends of his, that he considered me the Vice-Chairman of the Board. I swear to god.

Another friend of his told me once, and this was before I had met him...Sinatra was playing at Caesars. He was sitting in his dressing room, and Saturday Night Live comes on the television, and Sinatra saw me doing him on television. So his friend says to him, "What do you think Captain?" Sinatra turns to him and says, "He's pretty good...the little prick." I swear to god, true story...laughing....

I met Sammy Davis Jr. through Frank too. I loved talking to him. He was a performer. All those guys were amazing. I could never figure out how they got their energy. I mean, C'mon, those guys would stay up all night smoking, boozing and partying with broads. I asked Sammy once. I said, "Sammy how do you get the energy to do it all?" He just said, "I just do it man." It was amazing.

TV STORE ONLINE:  What's your favorite Sinatra album?

PISCOPO:    Sinatra At The Sands (1966). I love it. I always go back to it for reference.

TV STORE ONLINE: Whose Sinatra character/impression was better... Yours or Phil Hartman?

PISCOPO:  For the record? I never knew Phil Hartman. I am really protective of the Sinatra character. So I will say this...Asking Phil Hartman to do the Sinatra character is like someone asking me to do Eddie's Buckwheat character...laughing...God rest his soul though...Phil Hartman... I just didn't think his version was respectful of the old man.

Piscopo on Saturday Night Live
TV STORE ONLINE: With everything that's been written about the excess of the Saturday Night Live cast of the 1970's, was there any type of that stuff going on in your era? Where are the cocaine-fueled behind the scenes stories of the early 80's Saturday Night Live?

PISCOPO:  Well, when Belushi passed away, that killed all of that. Everyone realized that if a great force like John Belushi could be taken away, any one of us could. So that was that. Our cast was really clean too. I've said on the record before...Eddie and I never touched anything, but, and I won't give you a name, because I'm Italian, and I don't talk... But there was this mid level producer at SNL... You'd go in to pitch your material, he'd pull out a little baggie and snort lines of coke during your pitch. At NBC! Then, after that, he'd smoke a joint in front of you. You'd be pitching an idea, and he'd be trying to inhale, going " THHHHATTT'S NOT FUNNY MANNNN!"

TV STORE ONLINE:  Why did you leave the show in 1984?

Saturday Night Live "Mr. Bill" T-shirt
Available at TV Store Online
PISCOPO:  Well, I had film offers. I was burned out. My friend Eddie Murphy was leaving. The show really didn't need me any more. Lorne Michaels was bringing in new cast members: Christopher Guest, Billy Crystal, Martin Short. What was I gonna do with those guys coming in? So I just decided to move on.  But let me tell you this. I am so indebted to that show. I say this with the greatest humility because I'm not sure that I really belonged there. 

For me, being on that show was a once in a lifetime opportunity... Like the same thing as playing baseball for the New York Yankees. I knew by the grace of God, that I was lucky to be there. It was Lorne Michaels. I owe everything to him. He's allowed so many to just do what they wanted to do, come in, and have fun and work. I never wanted to be star, I just wanted to work. So you make your mark, and then you move on. Things have come full circle. I'm currently working on a pilot show for NBC, called After Dark with Joe Piscopo that I'm hoping to get Lorne Michael's to produce.

Piscopo as Ted Koppel
on Saturday Night Live
TV STORE ONLINE:  Do you currently watch Saturday Night Live? Do you think the show is still funny?

PISCOPO:  Over the years I've watched for sure. There have been some amazing performers on that show. I loved Dana Carvey. What a talent. Then Michael Myers. Wow. That guy. He was one of those scary good guys, that makes you ask yourself "Where are you from, brother?" He was the first to transition something from the show into a commercial success. I loved Kristen Wiig on the show. She was just as good as anyone thats ever worked on that show. And Fred Armisen. When he does "Governor David Paterson", that's it...That's the one. The funniest thing with Fred doing that...He nails it... As he floats in front of the camera. But what amazes me most about Fred is how he can read the cue cards with his eyes sealed...laughing...Some people in my generation have said that the show isn't what it used to be.  But C'mon, it's still great. I mean there are some truly genuine funny moments going on there yet.

My favorite of all time though is, Dan Aykroyd. He's the captain of the SNL star ship. He did characters with no make-up, no prosthetic  He just had that mustache. He'd go out there and do Nixon, Jimmy Carter and  The Blues Brothers. I've always been in awe of his execution of character. And if you talk to him...He's like a SNL expert. He knows every single SNL cast member from every season. It's like a fraternity or sorority. Just an amazing mind and a super smart guy on all fronts.

Piscopo's "I Love Rock'n Roll" LP
TV STORE ONLINE:  You're a cancer survivor? Can you share what was going through your head during that time? Did it change your life perspective?

PISCOPO: Yep, it  was during Saturday Night Live. It was in 1981. I found out about it and then went through with the show. In fact... I still remember the show. Bill Murray hosted. It was the first show that we convinced Eddie Murphy to do Muhammad Ali in full make-up. Ali had just had this huge fight. So we did the "Weekend Update", where I was the sports guy, and Eddie came out as Ali in full prosthetic. I wrote that whole sketch alone. And Eddie knocked it out of the ball park man. It was just genius. It was a great show. Sunday morning I woke up and went to the hospital for surgery. It was a tumor in my thyroid. It was a pretty aggressive form of cancer, but we caught it early. So I was really grateful for that. I actually didn't get a full remission until 1991. It changes your life. After that, all I cared about was my family. You realize that when you die, no one cares really about your work. All that is important is your family.

Funny thing... I never told anyone at Saturday Night Live that I had cancer except the producer Dick Ebersol, and Eddie Murphy. So after my surgery, the phone rings while I'm in the hospital, and I pick it up, all bruised and swollen, I've got these stitches, and it's Eddie. And he immediately starts going into these jokes, and I swear to god I was laughing so hard the stitches were coming out.

Joe Piscopo steals the show as "Danny Vermin" in
TV STORE ONLINE:  One of my very favorite films of all time is JOHNNY DANGEROUSLY. How did you get involved in that project, and what was the experience like for you?

PISCOPO: It was great. The funny thing about that film. It opened up OK. But over the years it's become this cult thing. Young kids, like 20 year olds are coming up to me telling me how much they like it. It was an amazing experience. They're turning it into a Broadway show actually. I mean, C'mon... I'm working with Danny Devito, Michael Keaton, Peter Boyle, and Dom DeLuise. Amy Heckerling directed it. She did it brilliantly too. It was the very first time I got to stay for an extended period of time out in California. The production was smooth. It was fun and easy. Norman Steinberg... The writer...He is working with me now on my new movie, JOEY BENEFIT. Michael Keaton was a joy to work with. He drove that whole picture. He was just hilarious. Overall it was just a super fun and super amazing time.

TV STORE ONLINE: Were you allowed to improv on JOHNNY DANGEROUSLY?

PISCOPO:  Yeah, totally. It was hard though because we all had a very difficult time not busting up during takes. The script was actually funny too. My whole "Once" thing was improvisation. That scene where Keaton hangs me on the hook? We decided we needed to do the "Once" thing in threes. So myself, Amy Heckerling, and Michael Keaton just sat down and figured out where we'd place those and then we decided we'd recall the gag near the end. It was just a blast.

TV STORE ONLINE:  One of my favorite lines in the film is where you pull out that giant gun, and say "This is an 88 magnum. It shoots through schools!" Script or improv?

Joe Piscopo, Michael Keaton and Marilu Henner

PISCOPO:  You know what? That was just so unbelievable. It was in the script. You gotta think... I mean... I've got kids! Then now with the whole school shooting thing..Back then we're endorsing guns in a movie that kids are gonna see...laughing...

TV STORE ONLINE:  Growing up as an HBO kid I got exposed to your HBO comedy specials as well. One of my all time favorite moments...And this has got be in the Top Five comedy sketches of all time I think...Its your Jerry Lewis / Michael Jackson Thriller parody from 1984. How in the hell did you come up with that concept?

Eddie Murphy, Jerry Lewis and Joe Piscopo
Saturday Night Live (1980)

PISCOPO:  Oh thanks, man! That means a lot. What's funny about that. I had pitched that idea when I was at Saturday Night Live right before I left. They hated it. So when I got to do the HBO special, I made it the centerpiece. SNL didn't get it, and I won all sorts of awards for it. I was kinda grateful that SNL passed on it. The best thing about it... We shot it in the exact same location Michael Jackson shot Thriller. We used some of his same dancers even. It was a blast.

I came up with it just cause I admired Jerry. And Thriller was huge at the time. So I was thinking about it and making myself laugh about it...laughing...I mean...I turn into Jerry and we have this collection of Jerry Lewis character's dancing. These people were Broadway caliber dancers too. I had to teach the dancers the Lewis moves, the Lewis steps...laughing...Jerry actually saw it, and he LOVED it!

TV STORE ONLINE:  Did you have any creative input into the writing of those Miller Lite Beer Commercials you did that were so huge in the mid 80's?

PISCOPO:  That's a good question. I did not actually. They were all tightly scripted. They were really well written. They were great concepts and I loved doing them. They were super funny. I was kinda wowed. Those commercials actually turned out to be the most watched spots in the country that year. We really had fun doing those. And we shot like two commercials in one day. I am so proud of those because those gave me a ton of exposure, and they helped fill more movie theaters for me than anything I've done.

TV STORE ONLINE:  I'm a huge fan of DEAD HEAT.  Are you aware of just how much of a cult film that has become?

Joe Piscopo in DEAD HEAT (1986)
PISCOPO:  Oh my god! Thanks! Listen, when we shot that film...First off, Treat Williams is amazing. Treat and I thought we were making a comedy or a parody of bad Sci-fi movies. And we were excited because it was just so cool to work with Vincent Price. Ultimately, just like how the character in the film died and came back to life...In that sense the film tanked but it has this following now. I really didn't see it's impact until I was overseas doing something in Japan, and I've got all these fans coming up to me, and they just won't stop talking about DEAD HEAT. 

Forget about it! They knew the film inside and out. Then I experienced more of that when I did this thing down in Mexico, and then Canada as well. It may be a bigger film in Canada than it is here in the United States. Canada loves DEAD HEAT. But even more, they love that episode of Star Trek I did. So you never know who's watching this stuff.

TV STORE ONLINE:  Working with Vincent Price.. Was he a giving actor to work with?

PISCOPO:  He was just a sweetheart. He's the master of Sci-fi and of the theater. I didn't get to spend too much time with him actually, but I was in my glory in his presence. When I was a kid, I saw THE FLY (1958) and THE TINGLER (1959) in the theater. And THE TINGLER scared me when I was a kid. So I was really thinking about that, and I was totally in my glory working with Vincent Price. Vincent Price was THE guy.

TV STORE ONLINE: How did the production of the film go for you?

PISCOPO:  Well, I was in a different frame of mind in those days. It was the late 80's. I was really into working out. I was doing the bodybuilding thing. I got interested in that because of my cancer.  I was having fun. I had my motorcycle. I was working out, getting bigger, and having fun with Treat Williams. The shoot went completely on schedule. I was outta my mind some just from having fun. I didn't realize what I was doing then or the impact the film would have now. I'd just go workout, hop on my motorcycle, then go onto the set and shoot up monsters.

Piscopo in SIDEKICKS (1992)
TV STORE ONLINE:  Were you disappointed when you  didn't get nominated for an Academy Award for your performance in SIDEKICKS (1992)?

PISCOPO:  laughing...I was so proud to be working with Chuck Norris! To be trained by Chuck Norris... Man, C'mon. I'd proud of that film. It's a film that my kids can watch today. It was fun to do. We did it down in Texas. I loved it because I could be bigger than life. It did pretty well at the box office too. I was so sad when the kid, Jonathan Brandis, took his own life. He was a sweetheart. It was senseless and a shame.

TV STORE ONLINE:  You've been labeled a conservative Democrat. How do you think Obama is doing?

PISCOPO: I'm a Kennedy Democrat. They call me a blue dog. That means that I'm strong on people's rights, but at the same time if someone messes with you, you kick their ass. I think Kennedy understood that. So I'm what they call a blue dog Democrat. I'm very disappointed in Obama. It seems like someone forgot to tell him that people don't have jobs. Someone forgot to tell him or he's not listening. Things are not easy. We need to become isolationists. We need to manufacturer everything within. Celebrities with big money are making these clothing lines in countries that we can't pronounce the names of. Why can't those celebrities bring those manufacturing jobs to the United States?  I'll tell you what... You bring those jobs to Newark, New Jersey, or  to Detroit, or to Little Rock, Arkansas... You'll see a decrease in gangs, violence, and crime.

Turning this country around is all about jobs. Why doesn't Obama get this?  Why not do something simple, like bring jobs back. Why can't Americans manufacturer something as simple as the case that an Ipod or Iphone comes in? A couple years of that and this country will be back big time.

No more cutting teachers pensions, or police or fire fighters pensions. Those people are essential to community. If the government is gonna cut someone's pay...Cut the pay of the guys who are counting the votes! Don't get me started on this!

TV STORE ONLINE: Being from New Jersey.... What's the best Jersey joke you've ever heard?

PISCOPO: Well, the catch phrase is (and I wrote it) "What Exit?" In a nutshell, we're a series of exits. The road system is...and I'm being kind...not the greatest. The phrase, "You can't get there from here", comes from New Jersey. I do actually get insulted when I hear people or see people on television making jokes about Italians, or Italian stereotypes, or jokes about how dirty New Jersey is and they aren't from New Jersey. That upsets me. If you're from New Jersey or Italian its OK though.

TV STORE ONLINE: What are you working on now?

PISCOPO:  Avellino Productions, my production company. We just started it. We're doing the pilot for NBC, After Dark with Joe Piscopo. It looks great. It's in the spirit of the old television show Playboy After Dark. A late night jazz comedy show. It's so hip man. We got Dan Aykroyd, Father Guido Sarducci himself  Don Novello is involved too... What a funny cat!

Then we're doing a new film, JOEY BENEFIT. Which is a comedy written and directed by Norman Steinberg. It's about one of those charity guys... You know... You got a charity, I got a tuxedo. I come early, I stay late... You know?  It's about ONE of those guys. It probably won't be out until next year, we're shooting it soon.

Then we've got another film we're working on, BLOOMFIELD AVENUE. I've been pushing it. Queen Latifah is co-producing it with us. We're really excited about that.

And of course, check out the live show on the road, coming to a town near you. I mean, this is all stuff I should've been doing 20 years ago. I'm a slow learner. I had to make sure my kids were OK. Family comes first. I'm really focused right now on this stuff. But I'll probably keep having kids!  I'll probably have a few more...laughing... Maybe one at every exit...laughing

Please visit his official website at www.joepiscopo.com
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