Hey guys, Tony Hale here. I'm a comic actor, and you might know from Netflix's Arrested Development and I'm currently on HBO's VEEP. Here's a fun Drunk History episode I was on that aired 2 days ago.

Anyways, I'm here to answer your questions for the next few hours before I head out to shoot the next season of VEEP in Baltimore. AMA!

proof: https://twitter.com/MrTonyHale/status/370594200879788032

Edit: Had such a great time chatting with all of you!! Thanks so much for the questions. So fun. Have a fantastic rest of the week.

Comments: 1145 • Responses: 85  • Date: 

Look_Alive1258 karma

I wouldn't expect too many responses; he is, after all, a Milford Man.

Tony_Hale849 karma

Good call.

Fossphate1096 karma

Heyyyyyy brother.

Tony_Hale1457 karma

Heyyyyy Reddit friend.

kroening2844 karma

Hi Tony, i think you're great in AD. how many takes did it require when Jessica Walter exhaled her cigarette smoke into your mouth and had you open the door and blow it outside?

Tony_Hale1627 karma

Not enough! I could have done that all day long.

Waffle_pancake536 karma

Want to come to my birthday party? I can provide unlimited juice

Tony_Hale775 karma

Don't tempt me like that!

ForeverAlone96487 karma

Will we ever see a Buster chicken dance on Arrested Development?

Tony_Hale1467 karma

Buster has entirely too much respect for chickens to make fun of them.

OneSup410 karma

Heyyyyy Brother! What is one of the funniest stories that you have from behind the scenes of Arrested Development?

Tony_Hale604 karma

Too many. My favorite thing to watch is the gag reel from each of the seasons because that's what I remember....the constant cracking up.

RyanCast1363 karma

How did your portrayal of Buster actually develop? Were you imitating any combination of actual mental disorders or somebody you've seen or did you just randomly play somebody who is just out of his mind?

Who's your favorite character other than Buster?

Tony_Hale655 karma

I lived in New York for 8 years and you see A LOT of fun subway characters. I think he's combination of a lot of folks. Hard to pick a favorite character...love em all!

fing3roperation351 karma

were you really naked in season 4 or was it a body-double?

Tony_Hale622 karma

You betcha! And I apologize for that image.

thegoldensalmon298 karma

"Alias is a show about a spy!" is one of the best line deliveries I've ever seen and your portrayal of Buster is just magnificent in every way possible. My question is what was the most fun scene to shoot on Arrested Development that you can remember?

Tony_Hale535 karma

Thanks. I would definitely say the cussing rant Buster had about his mother with Michael. Buster has A LOT of inner angst that needs to come out!!

caesar10022294 karma

How do you get into character for a guy like Buster?

Also, do you like juice in real life?

Tony_Hale966 karma

I overdose on juice boxes and watch 15 hours of Sponge Bob.

Charlesworths252 karma

Huge congratulations on the Emmy nomination and thanks for doing an AMA, I'm a huge fan of both Veep and Arrested Development!

In the Veep episode 'Shutdown,' Selina tells Gary to get something from the rubbish that is never revealed, but seems to horrify Garry. Will we ever find out what it was, or will it remain a mystery?

Also, do you think there would ever be a Veep and The Thick of It crossover?

Tony_Hale243 karma

Hi! I will never reveal those unmentionables...Selina would kill me! And I would love a Veep, Thick of It crossover!

Etab250 karma

Do you enjoy it when fans on the street parrot your characters' catch phrases back to you? How do you typically react in those situations?

Tony_Hale480 karma

I love it. They also remind me about things on the show that I've forgotten. I have a horrible memory.

ElSaboteur242 karma

Thanks for this! Huge Buster fan. What would be the first thing you did if you actually had a hook for a hand? Also, how does your relationship with your real mom compare to Buster's relationship with Lucille?

Tony_Hale518 karma

Thankfully my relationship with my mom is nothing like the one Buster has with Lucille. And if I had a hook...my daughter would definitely paint it pink and bedazzle it.

Etab219 karma

As someone who doesn't know anything about VEEP other than Tony Hale is in it, how would you, as someone involved with the show, describe the show to someone who has never heard of it?

Tony_Hale381 karma

It's a satire that takes a behind the scenes look at politics. We show these people, who daily make massive decisions, get insecure and have freak outs. Its hilarious. I have a lot of respect for anyone who wants to sign up for politics.

ThatGirlH219 karma


Tony_Hale447 karma

If it happens, we're definitely all on board. We love the writing and we love Mitch.

Alfred_Tomfoolery180 karma

Hey Tony, season four of Arrested Development was amazing! Out of all the long running jokes, which one is your favourite? Personally I think Tobias' blue man part was the best

Tony_Hale351 karma

I love the Blue Man, can't get enough of it! Any costume he puts on made me crack up.

darkmajki175 karma

Do you share any simmilarites with Buster?

Tony_Hale637 karma

Oh God I hope not. However, I did have a relationship with a Roomba once.

sunglassesintherain164 karma

Is it true the scene where you blow smoke out for Lucille was filmed using a real cigarette?

Tony_Hale613 karma

Can't remember...I was pretty high from that day.

DevinJet163 karma

If you could have done anything but acting, what would have it been?

Tony_Hale403 karma

Social Worker or Teacher.

supercore23148 karma

Just wanted to say that I loved your character on Chuck. I was totally shocked when they... y'know.

Tony_Hale228 karma

They took me OUT!

mks2000123 karma

Hey, Mr. Hale. Been a fan of you for a very long time. I was wondering two things-

  1. Both of your roles on Veep and Arrested Development are those of subservient men dominated by strong women that need him to pamper them, yet they are very different from each other. How difficult is it for you as a performer to keep them from blending together?

  2. Would you rather have toes for fingers or pinky fingers for toes?

Tony_Hale201 karma

The characters do have similarities but I think Gary is a high functioning Buster. Buster could use some therapy from Gary and Gary could use a hug. And I'm going to go for the pinky finger...I'd look like a Lord of the Rings character!

operation_hennessey117 karma

If there were to be a biopic made about your life, who would you want to play the role of Tony Hale?

Tony_Hale593 karma

Clearly a mix between Ryan Gosling and Pee Wee Herman. Are they available?

peanutismint116 karma

Hey Tony! Great to see a fellow Christian with a sense of humour. Do strangers ever give you awkward 'heyy brother' shoulder massages from behind??

Tony_Hale188 karma

I wish they'd do it more!

coolsteed108 karma

Hi Tony! What is your favourite type of juice?

Tony_Hale260 karma

Any and all...Jamba Juice is Buster's Happy Hour.

Sibbo94107 karma

Tony, what was the most interesting thing to happen between takes? Thanks for doing this AMA.

Tony_Hale266 karma

Laughing and eating the free food. I don't ever NOT get excited about free food.

koske14106 karma

Who would win in a fight, Buster or Annyong?

Tony_Hale330 karma

Season 1-3: Buster. Season 4: Annyong.

rew42089 karma

You are great Tony! How was it filming the smoking scene in the new AD episodes when your helping Jessica Walters smoke in the penthouse?

Tony_Hale210 karma

A.W.E.S.O.M.E! I love that woman and loved inhaling smoke out of her mouth.

FiremanMills88 karma

Can you send me a medal from army?

Tony_Hale228 karma

You don't have any stuffed animals?

patarbutler87 karma

Favorite AD memory on set?

Tony_Hale234 karma

Having lunch with Liza Minelli and hearing all of her fantastic stories.

justmeXXL86 karma

Mr. Hale just wanted to say you're my favorite character on arrested development. Please convince the writers to make buster marry lucille 2. Best wedding ever.

Tony_Hale184 karma

That would be THE BEST! No need for champagne...just tons of juice.

jabberwocky_84 karma

You’ve played opposite of many of my favorite comical leading ladies! Out of Liza Minnelli, Jessica Walter and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who is the funniest off-screen and why?

Tony_Hale102 karma

That's a hard one. The are all crazy talented and I feel very fortunate to have worked with them all. The crack me up in different ways!

ScarySpencer83 karma

I was listening to your episode of the Nerdist and, being from Alabama, it made me super happy to hear you went to Samford. Do you ever come back to Birmingham?

Tony_Hale141 karma

I do. I love Birmingham. And I love walking around that Campus. A lot of great memories.

dmol80 karma

How did you find your brief time on Community.

Tony_Hale128 karma

Loved it. Anthony and Joe Russo directed it and they did the pilot for Arrested Development.

eztarget89671 karma

how many hey brothers do you get in a day?

Tony_Hale269 karma

I make my family say it to me 113 times a day.

philwinkle67 karma

Do you feel that your character's roles are at conflict with your Faith, and how do you reconcile the two very different worlds?

Tony_Hale207 karma

Not at all. Life is chaotic and funny...not perfect. We gotta laugh more!

masterm1664 karma

Hi Tony! I'm a huge fan of your work. Keep up the great work. You are very entertaining :)

How did you get into acting?

Tony_Hale114 karma

Thanks so much! I started doing commercials and theater in New York and then moved to Los Angeles when I got Arrested Development.

Frajer61 karma

do you watch out for loose seals at the beach now?

Tony_Hale154 karma

Don't even mention that word. Loose or Seal...not good.

wkendwarrior59 karma

when i say Volkswagen.. you say?

Tony_Hale167 karma

Mr. Roboto baby!

awesomeman46257 karma

So how did that giant hand work? Cgi?

Tony_Hale126 karma

No. They made it for me. It was awesome. It was like a massive glove over my hand and I could move the fingers and everything.

fast_and_bulbous_47 karma

What's your favorite episode of AD? How are you in real life compared to your character?

Tony_Hale122 karma

Bringing up Buster. Hopefully I don't have that many similarities except I do love to give my wife a Buster-like back rub.

dantmaldo47 karma

Does the pecorino really taste as good as Dana says it is?

Tony_Hale53 karma


Choco-Paco46 karma

Hi Tony! You have worked with some great writers. Which do you think is more important in your comedy: the script, or the delivery?

EDIT: By the way, it was great to meet you in Pasadena a couple years ago at Providence Christian College. http://imgur.com/MzEuOlx

Tony_Hale68 karma

Great question. It always has to start with a solid script. If that's not there, the delivery can help but can't save it.

Skootchy46 karma

I have always enjoyed the show, your character is one of my favorites. What was it like when the show finally started back up after all these years? When are we going to see the AD movie?

Tony_Hale139 karma

It was very surreal. But the minute I heard Lucille's abusive, condescending tone...it was like riding a bike again.

antonehenry37 karma

Hi, Tony. Who came up with the idea of referencing your work in the VW commercial in Arrested Development? Thought it was brilliant.

Thanks for your work, VEEP is on my list of shows to watch before September. Very excited.

Tony_Hale63 karma

So glad you like Veep! I love it. The VW joke was all the writers. Those guys are crazy good.

likwitsnake37 karma

What was your favorite adlibbed moment on set?

Tony_Hale85 karma

Hmmm...this requires a good memory and mine sucks.

ddelrymple29 karma

I never thought I'd see you as anybody else but Buster, but I loooooooooove you on Veep! Is season 3 in the works? Will you and Selena ever hook up? In Gary's dreams maybe

Tony_Hale37 karma

Thanks! Gary's dream is that him and Selina will be married. Oh dear God, PLEASE!

Pepsiman3429 karma

Cannot think of a question but really enjoyed Arrested Development season 4.

Tony_Hale35 karma


thewoodsterix27 karma


Tony_Hale70 karma

I love anything Paul Thomas Anderson does. Punch Drunk Love is one of my favorite movies.

BinLaggin26 karma

Hi Tony! Are there any lines from the show that you catch yourself saying?

Tony_Hale56 karma

I have the worst memory but I do love Buster's "Motherboy Ball right?"

coolskier8924 karma

First off, you are amazing. I loved you in AD, but I also liked the time you had in the TV show Chuck.

When you did the scene in Chuck where you were hanging out with Jeff & Lester in the break room, you decline to drink their booze and pull out some juice. Was this something the writers added in as a shout out to AD? How was your experience working on Chuck and the most gorgeous Yvonne Strahovski?

Tony_Hale34 karma

I totally forgot about that. How funny. Good call! It was a great experience. I loved all those guys.

ProWayneJarvis21 karma

SPOILER ALERTS Hey there Tony, I was just wondering what your reaction was when you found out that Buster was going to lose his hand, and then your reaction to finding out you were getting one back in season 4?

Tony_Hale36 karma

Very very surreal. I was worried about the hand at first but then knew Mitch Hurwitz had a great plan about it. And he did.

amandajreynolds20 karma

Congrats on your Emmy nom! Who are some of your favourite television characters and why?

Tony_Hale41 karma

Anything Tim Conway or Bob Newhart played. They were huge inspirations for me.

uberlad19 karma


Tony_Hale116 karma

If you don't practice contentment where you are, you're not going to be content when you get what you want. Also, don't listen to the lie that things don't change...we are always in a constant state of change.

Katanae18 karma

You're a monster!

Tony_Hale19 karma


laminatedbunny18 karma

Hi Tony!

Arrested Development is one of my favorite shows. I cannot get enough of Buster.Which cast members are you closest to on AD? If you didn't go into acting, what would be your dream career?

Tony_Hale18 karma

Thanks so much. Everyone is great. Our schedules are all over the place but when we do reunite, it's always great to see everyone. And I think a teacher.

Nick169318 karma

What happened to that NBC short Ctrl? I actually liked that, and it was cancelled after one season.

Tony_Hale23 karma

Thanks I loved it too. We wanted to do another season but there were a lot of factors that kept it from happening. never know, maybe it will happen!

VelociMaxer17 karma

Did you learn how to massage for the "hey brother" scenes? Or is it all improv?

Tony_Hale61 karma

I worked with the Swedish Massage Institute for about 8 month for shooting. Could you tell I hope?

stripeysweaters17 karma

Thanks so much for doing this AMA! I quote Buster on a regular basis, and I feel like he's such a great character that you developed really well.

What was your fondest memory of shooting Arrested Development, and what was your favorite scene that YOU filmed?

Thanks again!

Tony_Hale54 karma

hmmm. Fondest memories are the trying to not laugh. Favorite scene was cussing out my mother and the long beep over the words. Awesome.

thegreatgreg16 karma

How did you like the new format for season 4 of AD? Would you want to keep it for any upcoming seasons or go back to a traditional episodic format (provided that was practical given the cast's schedule)?

Tony_Hale28 karma

Great question. i don't know. Pretty much whatever Mitch comes up with, I'm on board. He is crazy talented.

Bigsam41115 karma

Hey thanks for the AMA. Big fan of Arrested Development and starting to get into VEEP.

Anyway what was it like doing the smoking scene with Jessica Walters? That was a really awkward scene I would imagine.

Tony_Hale43 karma

Was it awkward or amazing? I'd say AMAZING!

gelmaster18914 karma

Tony! Thank you so much for taking the time to do this! I loved your work as Buster Bluth in Arrested Development! You are hilarious!!!

What was your favorite scene to film in Arrested Development as Buster?

Tony_Hale25 karma

Definitely inhaling smoke from my Lucille's mouth...I would have done that all day long!

KustyTheKlown12 karma

i just want to say thank you for buster bluth

any idea of a timeline for the next part of the AD saga?

movie or tv? netflix again either way?

Tony_Hale24 karma

Thanks so much. I unfortunately have no clue about what could happen but that's what I love about the show. Tons of surprises!

cash1nch3x928 karma

Hey Tony, you'd make my day if you could compare each character from the show to a character from game of thrones!

Tony_Hale18 karma

I just started watching it! i don't have the knowledge yet! sorry.

Dundermuffin6668 karma

How awesome was it to be on Chuck?

Tony_Hale11 karma

Awesome. Great people.

TheHatedAtheist7 karma

As Veep is vaguely based on The Thick of It, and is written by Armando Iannucci, I would just like to know your opinion on British comedy, and if you have have a favourite British comedy show?

Tony_Hale9 karma

I love working those guys. And I love that a bunch of British guys are writing a show about American politics. Of course I have to say "The Thick of It"

flappy_cows6 karma

Hey Tony, I loved your work in Veeb, but your work in Arrested Development was amazing. So what real life relationships do you have with your fellow AD actors/actresses, and did you stay connected with them after Season 4 was done filming?

Tony_Hale16 karma

We're all pretty busy, thankfully, but it's always so fun to reunite and catch up.

dangerproof3 karma

I've read that of all the AD cast, you get into your character the most and walk around the set in between takes pretty much as Buster. Is this true?

Tony_Hale8 karma

Definitely before I shot, I would have some "Buster time" alone. He is definitely on a different planet that one...a planet with a lot of argyle and pastels.

JeruTheClamaja3 karma

What's your favorite of Buster's lines?

Tony_Hale4 karma

So many. Of the recent season..."It's a Motherboy Ball...right?"

malaise923 karma

I'm instinctively reading all of your comments in Buster's voice.

Tony_Hale4 karma


Saytan_2 karma

What do you think a new season of AD will have in store?

Tony_Hale4 karma

Tons and tons and tons and tons and tons of surprises!

MaltesePanda2 karma

With the rise of such great tv over the past decade have you seen a shift in the way actors view tv opportunities vs films?

Tony_Hale4 karma

If an actor is being honest, a job is a job. We are all just thankful to be working!

lquill2 karma

What did you use for inspiration for buster's character? Did you base him off anyone?

Tony_Hale5 karma

A lot of crazy subway character from my time in New York!

dreamerkid0012 karma

Hi, Tony, I'm a huge fan. Buster is my favorite character. I was just wondering what it's like to work with so many other awesome stars on Arrested Development. Specifically, what's Mr. Tamboor like?

Tony_Hale5 karma

He's the best. Kind man. It's very overwhelming to work with such great talent. I'm very humbled to have the opportunity.

thewarehouse2 karma

One of my favorite parts of Arrested Development was the callback to the Volkswagen commercial, tied to the "Mr. Roboto" joke, etc. - in any of your work outside of AD have there been nods/callbacks/in-jokes referencing Buster?

Tony_Hale11 karma

My character on Veep, Gary, did say "No touching" a couple of times. I love a good AD callback!

pebbles8372 karma

1) If you had to choose a different AD character to be, who would you pick?

2) Were you in on the running gags in AD? Like all the hand references that led up to Buster losing his hand? Or did you discover the connection like we all did?

Tony_Hale3 karma

I love all of Tobias' costumes. So fantastic. I discovered the connection like you did. It was definitely a fun surprise!

TookThisName2 karma

Hey Tony. When you hit your head with the coconut, was that on purpose or an accident and then put in the show?

Tony_Hale4 karma

On purpose. poor Buster.

Pachyephalosaurus2 karma

Is it hard staying in character and not cracking up during the filming of AD?

Tony_Hale7 karma

VERY HARD! And of everyone, I do not keep it together well.

operation_hennessey2 karma


I just wanted to tell you that I think you are hilarious and that Buster is my favourite Arrested Development character. Which Buster moment did you enjoy filming the most?

Tony_Hale4 karma

So nice. Thanks. I'd have to say Buster's cussing rant about Lucille was one of my favorites. Definitely.

rpastorelle2 karma

Have you gotten much better at massaging since you began working on AD?

Tony_Hale7 karma

Oh yes. But Buster was always good at it...he just didn't get a fair chance after the seal stole a very important massage instrument.

chr_nicunderachiever2 karma

Hey Tony thanks for the AMA! Just wanted to know if you are as obsessed with Jessica Walters in real life as you are in the show, because she's pretty awesome!

Tony_Hale6 karma

She's AWESOME! So good at what she does.

Schwarzgerat2 karma

What sets Mitch Hurwitz apart from other writers/producers?

Tony_Hale4 karma

Completely thinks outside of the box. Doesn't edit himself with ideas. He's crazy good.

source24designs2 karma

Heeeeyyy Brother. Who is your favorite actor to work with on your shows?

Tony_Hale4 karma

hard to pick a favorite. I've been fortunate enough to work with some fantastically talented AND kind people.

TheRealAK1 karma

Hi Tony,

Can you compare how similar or different working on Veep vs Arrested Development have been? (re cast/crew/amount of improv/etc)? I've only seen one or two eps of Veep but am a die hard AD fan. Curious to hear how they compare esp since there's some actors who have been on both shows

Tony_Hale4 karma

Totally different. But equally good. We rehearse on Veep for 2-3 weeks before we shoot and play and improv. Really fun. On Arrested, the scripts have so many dense, hidden jokes that we keep to the page.

homelandsecurity__1 karma

Which actor you've worked with would you say you've learned the most from?

Also, how many times a day do people come up to you with a "Heeeey Brother!"

Tony_Hale5 karma

Both Jason Bateman and Julia Louis Dreyfus have taught me a lot. They brilliantly bounce off the chaos around them. It's awesome to watch.

uprope1 karma

Do you try to get roles for weird characters or does that just happen?

Tony_Hale11 karma

Just happens. What does that say about me? Hmmmmm.