I made a leetle movie for Netflix, a labor of love known as GIRLFRIEND’S DAY (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2L0100_Yp4) - it PREMIERES ON VALENTINE'S DAY! So, let's discuss! And I'm happy to tell you nothing substantial about Better Call Saul or W/Bob&David or anything else as well. LET'S NOT ARGUE ABOUT POLITICS! Unless, of course, you want to - but this movie is about love, romance, and anger - let's try to stick to those topics.

Proof: https://twitter.com/mrbobodenkirk/status/830486775386607617

EDIT: Thank you so much for the great questions. I hope you’ll all watch my little movie Girlfriend’s Day at some point in the next year. It’s not going anywhere; it will be up on Netflix. See you on April 10th with a new season of Better Call Saul!

Comments: 1098 • Responses: 31  • Date: 

imissbreakingbad973 karma

Hey, do you have change for a dollar?

BobOdenkirk1915 karma

Uhhh...dit dit dit....teh teh teh...shhhhhhhh...ding ding dinga dong...eeeeeeeeeeee, let me check with my supervisor

AlexChatzo844 karma

I'm a huge fan of yours! I love so much your performance as Jimmy McGill/Saul Goodman, you're just astonishing and underrated actor! Can you tell us anything about Better Call Saul season 3? Will S3 be the best yet?! Greetings from Greece!

BobOdenkirk1645 karma

Hi! Thank you! BETTER CALL SAUL season 3 is just wrapping filming. I finished up on Friday last week! It comes out April 10. VERY SORRY ABOUT THE WAIT, everyone. But the writers needed a break this year, they were exhausted. So, they took a month or so off, and then we had the holiday break during filming, so...we're a few weeks later in premiering, but I promise it's GREAT STUFF! I can't wait, myself!

klamonic1713 karma

Hey Mr. Odenkirk, if you could star in the remake of any classic film, which film would you choose?

BobOdenkirk1497 karma

Good question. Hmmmmm (me, thinking) What about "to Kill A Mockingbird" and I get to be a far more conflicted Atticus Finch? Or the Maltese Falcon, only with a twist - it's a chocolate Santa instead of a falcon - something worth killing someone for.

suaveitguy509 karma

Could someone start a comedy career at 50?

BobOdenkirk1484 karma

Yeah, it could happen. Are you suggesting I start being funny? I get it. No...but seriously, you could. It would help an awful lot to have that self-awareness in it. Now...a "showbiz" career...like, full on - move to LA and dig in..? I don't think so. It takes years to establish yourself here. BUT if you just wanted to write funny stuff and find somewhere to put it up, you could do that and you could develop if you had an open mind and approached it seriously. But not too seriously, it's friggin comedy

fuckswithducks458 karma

In your movie, Let's Go to Prison, Chi McBride's character professes a love for ducks and hits on Will Arnett's character in the prison showers with a rubber ducky. As a director, what kind of direction do you give to your actors when creating ridiculous characters within a comedy setting?

BobOdenkirk279 karma

Play it seriously. But with Chi I didn't need to do that, he owned that role and got it right from the start, same goes for everyone in that film and Michael Shannon sure played it straight, huh? Great performances. GIRLFRIENDS DAY, which shows starting tomorrow on Netflix is the SAME thing. VERY SILLY script and scenario (I helped write it), but the only way it "works" is if you play it serious as can be done. Everyone does that here.

goofylovechild414 karma

Hi Bob! I'm doing stand up and writing half-hour specs but I live in Florida. I know I have to move but which city is best for pursuing a career in comedy? Chicago for its improv? New York for its stand up? Or LA for literally everything?

BobOdenkirk1694 karma

Chicago. More options, more places to practice in different modes of comedy. Get there. Now. Also, don't write half-hour specs. Write original comedy to start and get it ONSTAGE. Go take classes and perform at Annoyance Theatre, UCB, Second City, ImprovOlympic. Also, do stand up at alternative spaces. Get to work

suaveitguy368 karma

What was the Rosebud that drove Chris Farley?

BobOdenkirk598 karma

Making his Dad laugh, I think.

Ed_Sullivision314 karma

How can I learn to say "Goddamnit" as hilariously as you do?

BobOdenkirk788 karma

Hide a little genuine anger in it.

E-raticMenace232 karma

I've noticed that you've spent a lot of time in Chicago. As someone from Chicago, I was wondering if there is anything you really like about it? Thanks for your time!

BobOdenkirk563 karma

I love Chicago. Chicago has nice people, beautiful architecture, mood and character, great food, weather (when you live in LA you miss "weather", y'know?)... I loved it when I lived there, too...because of the awesome theatre and improv scene. So many theaters, so many people doing interesting stuff. And very little of the bad influence of the larger industry around you. More pure artistic efforts.

hypergenesb121 karma

How do you differentiate Jimmy McGill and Saul Goodman in your head, scene to scene? When are they the same, when are they different?

BobOdenkirk390 karma

Saul is pretty shut down, emotionally. Jimmy is an open floodgate of emotions. But life is battering Jimmy down, and he is getting colder, harder, more defensive. Soon he'll be Saul, a misanthropic manipulator who views people as pawns in a game he's trying to "win" - remind you of anyone?

suaveitguy120 karma

Were you apprehensive about Fargo? The baggage that came from it being a 'TV version' of such an iconic film must have been intimidating, though it ultimately (and quickly) transcended that you couldn't have known that up front?

BobOdenkirk257 karma

Hell, yes! But I would say I was even more apprehensive about SAUL. Look, the biggest fear with Saul was that I would taint people's justifiable love for the great and awesome Breaking Bad. Fargo, the movie, is fantastic, but it was years in the past and I could see that the TV show, so smartly created by Noah Hawley, didn't connect up overmuch with the specifics of the film. It just utilized that wonderful mix of humor, character, and violence that is so unique and so entertaining. I knew by the time I'd read page 9 of the script that it was super fun

suaveitguy107 karma

If you were starting out today, how would you approach YouTube etc...? Seems like the easy access to a worldwide audience could ratchet up the pressure to prove yourself, without the opportunities to apprentice.

BobOdenkirk271 karma

True. But if I think back on what made me better at what I do I think of working ALONGSIDE Robert Smigel, Jim Downey, Al Franken, Conan O Brien, and then Adam Resnick and of course, David Cross...among others. So, while it's great to be able to simply make stuff and get it out there, it's also important to have that front row seat to other minds with better skills than yourself, working. There is an apprenticeship aspect to that that is very worthwhile

suaveitguy93 karma

What is the best way to hone creative instincts?

BobOdenkirk327 karma

Interesting question. The obvious answer is Work Work Work. Put them to the test. Write stuff, create, then think as deeply as you can about what you did, what worked, what didn't. The thing is, how "honed" can these instincts be? After 40-some movies shouldn't every single Woody Allen film be absolutely perfect? But it isn't, and it never will be. This is because it's still a creative endeavor, and uncertainty is your partner in it, and you have to use your instincts and skills but know that you will need magic to be "great" and you can't count on that magic, you just have to do your part and hope it shows up

Mrkingofstuff92 karma

Hi Bob, thanks for taking the time to answer random internet questions - as an American transplant, I find Saul’s character incredibly accurate in its representation of the idiosyncrasies of U.S culture (Always hustling, doing morally grey things for purportedly right reasons - or maybe that’s just all humans?) It’s entertaining as hell, so thank you for doing what you do.

  • Girlfriend’s Day is coming out on Netflix tomorrow - compared to working with traditional studios, was the process of working with Netflix any different? Is there more creative freedom, is there less financial uncertainty?

  • You’ve been in entertainment for an incredibly long time (shout out to Mr. Show) - do you see your career split as before Saul/after Saul, or is it just another character for you in a long career?

  • Do you have any advice to give to young people, who may feel lost and unsure what to do with their life? (Totally not me..)

BobOdenkirk283 karma

THREE QUESTIONS... THREE ANSWERS, below... * Thanks for asking about GIRLFRIENDS DAY. I love this little movie the same way I love Mr. Show. I know that it won't be everyone's cup of tea, but it's a cup of tea I will personally be sipping with joy for years to come. Netflix is the ONLY place that could host such a quirky endeavor and get it to the audience of smart and curious brains that will appreciate it. Plus it's only 65 minutes long, so...wouldn't really play in a traditional format. IT'S FUN, DARK, SERIOUS, FUNNY, RIDICULOUS, and I swear in it a bunch. * I don't see my career as being divided as clearly as it seems from the outside perhaps. I still write comedy and work on comedy projects. SAUL certainly has opened up doors for me in the drama world, and that's great and new, but it's all a big kitchen-sink mess of a career to me. I like it that way and I will say I am "blessed" although, according to Wikipedia, I am an "atheist". Who gets to decide that? * My advice to young people who are trying to find themselves is...keep trying. Make no mistake, outside of some patches of life that lucky people like me run into, everyone is, every day, trying to "find themselves". Maybe the dalai lama has it down, but everybody else is working on it, every day. But as a younger person take note that you can take more risks than an older person can - move to a fresh city - try something new and really commit to it - and then, also, I would add, try to dissemble your experiences smartly - try to notice what you contribute to a project or effort. You may want to be a comedy writer, but if you work on a project, find that you are a better director, or producer...if you can be honest about what your contribution actually was. I was surprised that I felt more impactful and connected in dramatic acting than my first love, comedy. But I am going to take that cue from life and pursue it now, see how far it goes.

Amber239188 karma

How do you become at better at improv? I can think of funny stuff to say. Just not on the spot.

BobOdenkirk242 karma

Stop trying to think of funny stuff to say. Just say what comes in to your head. IMPROV is not a CLEVERNESS CONTEST if done right. Try to see the show "TJ AND DAVE" in the theatre in New York or Chicago (they play in both places all the time). That's a great example of improv done right. Also the GROUNDLINGS, while hilarious, are also doing great improv, especially in their THURSDAY night alumni show.

cracka_azz_cracka83 karma

Aside from all your kick-ass starring roles, you've done a ton of bit parts and cameos. What was your favorite? Which do you get recognized for most often?

BobOdenkirk372 karma

"How I Met Your Mother" was a "bit part" I did, over a few episodes, maybe 6 or so, and for some people it is the ONLY thing they've ever seen me in. Can you imagine that? A person who knows the bit players from "HIMYM" but has never seen Breaking Bad or Fargo or Mr Show? Well, start imagining it - because it's happened, more than once.

samwise091277 karma

On a more personal level, what are some of your favorite films?

BobOdenkirk248 karma


suaveitguy76 karma

What did Jim Downey teach you?

BobOdenkirk170 karma

Jim Downey was the head writer at SNL when I worked there. He oversaw everything, and seemed to contribute to stuff that he liked - which is to say he didn't put his hands on everything. But he wrote a piece called "CHANGEBANK" that made me notice that you could really make a comedy meal out of riffing on the TONE of something; in this case banking commercials. Obviously, there's a funny comedy idea there; a bank that only makes change. But the best part of the humor is the presentation and riffing on the kind of low-key commercial that was, at the time, fresh and prevalent. A keen observation on his part, and he made something classic out of it.

imissbreakingbad74 karma

Would you hire Saul as your lawyer? Why / why not?

BobOdenkirk227 karma

No. The ethical slipperiness would just scare the bejesus out of me. Now...would an "atheist" believe in "bejesus"...I don't think so.

dajaje73 karma

What is the set like between takes on Better Call Saul, given that all of the actors are all so serious by nature?

BobOdenkirk253 karma

We are truly great friends. Mando, Seehorn, Fabian, McKean, Banks...we hang out together, go on hikes, go to dinner all the time, go on bike rides (there are 400 miles of bike trail/street lanes in Albuquerque!!) It is an amazing family of actors.

KratosAur69 karma

One of my favorite guilty pleasure movies is Run Ronnie Run. I read an article about how you all hate the movie so much and took your names of it. Can you elaborate on the process of creating the film and your feelings toward it?

BobOdenkirk151 karma

It would take too long to get into this. There is still so much I love about Run Ronnie Run. So many funny lines and performance moments. I feel bad that the movie doesn't hang together very well. Basically, David and I got cut out of the finishing aspects of the film. I am not saying we could have made it sing, but if we'd been able to continue working on it, we could have made it hum, at least.

harione9665 karma

First of all, thank you for doing this. Big fan!

I have two questions, if I may.

1) What do you do in your spare time? To take the edge off?

And 2) which Breaking Bad character would you have loved to have played had you not been Saul?

BobOdenkirk186 karma

  1. Go to the Dog Park with my amazing dog, Olive.
  2. I want to have a run at Walter White, of course. Aim high, right? No one could ever be better than Bryan, though.

suaveitguy47 karma

Do you know any centered, together, grounded, content but hilarious comedians?

BobOdenkirk166 karma

Well, first of all, I don't know many people who are centered, together, grounded and content in ANY career. Right? But yeah, I know some people who are pretty solid. Sarah Silverman seems to know exactly what she's about, Patton Oswalt, Zach Galifianakis, Paul F. Tompkins...those are names of people I think of as being solid individuals who know themselves and seem pretty happy. But what does anyone know about what's going on inside others? I think the answer to your bigger question is; are all comedians f-ed up inside? And my answer is, no more than other people. That's my gut feeling on it.

89Wrangler32 karma

Mr. Odenkirk! I love pretty much everything you've ever worked on.

Are you going to be in any of the new Tim and Eric stuff coming out?

BobOdenkirk94 karma

No. Love those guys. Can't wait to see the new season of DECKER!!! When is it on? Do YOU know??? But I am in GIRLFRIENDS DAY - Premiering TOMORROW on NETFLIX. Watch it anytime you like - it's on Netflix! No rush. hope you like it.

suaveitguy32 karma

You are a sort of Forrest Gump/Zelig of comedy, a big difference being that you outright earned your opportunities. Second City, SNL, Conan, Tim & Eric, Ben Stiller/Judd Apatow universe, etc... Is there a common thread that makes these standout? Same rules apply to Fargo/Breaking Bad/Better Call Saul?

BobOdenkirk80 karma

I am most comfortable on the fringe. Something that has a risky and uncertain vibe accompanying it. Maybe that is just a protective maneuver. After all, if you're trying something fresh and uncertain then you can always blame failure on that aspect of it - playing with fire you can get burned and just shrug - what did I expect? GIRLFRIENDS DAY - this little movie that plays on Netflix starting on Valentine's Day, and YES, that is what I am on here today for - because I want people to know about it and give it a sampling, well, this is RIGHT IN THAT CATEGORY. It's an oddball. What's it like? Sort of Coen Brothers-ey, like a pulpy BEING THERE, comic, with everyone playing it straight, loony, but somehow grounded. A risk to try to get it right, but again, that risk is a big part of what attracts me

darnfino26 karma

bill maher or john oliver?

BobOdenkirk104 karma

Both great. I go slightly with Maher because he really confronts bullshit in a pretty direct and unironic way and, right now, I'm afraid we all need to be that serious about this craziness

mrshatnertoyou25 karma

What was the genesis for Girlfriend's Day?

BobOdenkirk51 karma

Eric Hoffman was a writer on MR. SHOW WITH BOB AND DAVID. He wrote the initial draft of GIRLFRIENDS DAY with Phillip Zlotorynski. Eric shared the script with me and I fell in love with the pissy, hilarious, main character RAY WENTWORTH; a romantic-greeting card writer who has NO LOVE for anyone and hasn't written a good card in years. The script had one hilarious incident/character after another, a truly unique scenario, and many allusions to the story of CHINATOWN, possibly my favorite film of all time. So, I started working on it with them. Over many years we wrote on it, set it aside, tried to get it made, set it aside, wrote some more, etcetera. Finally, Netflix was cool enough to help us make it; because it's just so offbeat. Only a platform like Netflix could offer it - there's so much variety they are interested in giving their subscribers - that a fringe effort like GIRLFRIENDS DAY could belong there and find it's fans.

nontoaster23 karma

Favorite actor to work with? Actor you want to work with most in the future?

BobOdenkirk57 karma

I hope to get to work with Jon Voight one day. I just like the guy. Loved working with Bruce Dern. Also wouldn't say no to sharing the screen with Nicholson, but what are the chances of that?

Schabizzle20 karma

Mr. Odenkirk,

I'm a big fan, thank you so much for doing this AMA!

I'm really looking forward to watching Girlfriend's Day tomorrow! I watched the trailer this weekend, and I must say, I was shocked with the turn it took. So my question is how did you guys come up with the premise for this movie?

PS I'm counting down the days until Saul returns!:)


BobOdenkirk26 karma

I wrote this film with the two guys who originally thought it up; Eric Hoffman and Phil Zlotorynski. While I am proud of my writing contribution, the tone - very unique, came from them! They wrote something unlike pretty much anything I've ever seen. FUNNY AS HECK, but also with a murder and weirdness and even a sweetness mixed in. You may not like it the first time you see it. But it'll grow on ya. Be prepared for something special.

suaveitguy16 karma

Did you enjoy working with George Meyer?

BobOdenkirk40 karma

George Meyer is one of the greats and a legend of comedy writing. He worked on The New Show, Letterman, SNL, and many years on The Simpsons. He is responsible for wonderfully funny sketches and great Simpsons episodes. He wrote "Big Red" for SNL (sooooo funny), and "Food Repair" for The New Show, and that scene where Joe Montana as a guy whose thoughts and what he tells people are exactly the same thing. Brilliant sketch on SNL. Although I have been in the same comedy writing room with him, I haven't exactly worked "with" him. Just admired his excellence from some proximity. OH, and ARMY MAN, let's not forget ARMY MAN...look it up

Terry_Carlton6715 karma

What's your favorite Del Close memory?

BobOdenkirk31 karma

In a class at CROSSCURRENTS (club now gone) he talked about improvising in the say that children can play cops and robbers; how they establish a game that keeps going, by supporting each others choices. Interesting. I had a lot of little brothers and sisters and so I knew what he meant. ALSO, one time he JOINED THE IMPROV that was happening, and he was the BEST actor I'd ever seen at that point in my life and it really impacted me. He brought a whole world with him on stage.