Actor and comedian Joel McHale will be in Calgary this weekend for a series of standup comedy performances at The Laugh Shop.
Arguably best known for his role on the NBC sitcom Community, McHale is by no means new to standup.
“I’ve been doing it 15 years. I guess some people don’t know. Or maybe it’s because I’m not funny. It’s either one,” he joked while appearing on Global Calgary on Friday. “I’ve done it consistently throughout the years because I really like money and I had an eye on a pool for a long time. I live in southern California, so you need one.”
“My goal was to never have to get a real job,” he added. “As a teenager, I was like ‘I’m just going to try to keep doing this until someone stops me,’ and strangely my parents were encouraging.”
“My philosophy was like, keep working and try to do stuff that seems interesting – if someone will allow you and then pay you.”
McHale’s most recent project was CBS sitcom The Great Indoors, about an adventure writer forced to work with a group of Millennials after he moves back to Chicago. The show was cancelled after one season, which McHale made light of when appearing on Global Calgary.
“It’s like a fine wine – they only make a few cases,” he joked.
McHale admits he doesn’t have a great “divining rod” for determining which of his projects will be successful.
“With The Great Indoors I was like ‘this seems to be going well’ and then, then they said ‘no it’s not.’”
“Community, every year we thought we were going to be cancelled and then we were brought back, like a disease.”
McHale says he will probably try to get back to television in the next few months.
“I’ve been working on a couple of movies and shows as guest stars and appearing in them so we’ll see.”
One of McHale’s most recent roles was playing his former Community co-star Chevy Chase in a not-yet-released Netflix biopic about the life of National Lampoon co-creator Doug Kenny who died suddenly in 1980.
“Chevy was one of the last people to see him. They were best friends and it was a tragic story – but the guy changed comedy in about 10 years. He changed comedy in the 70s forever.”
“I play a young Chevy Chase – I hope I play a young Chevy Chase, because Chevy could play an older Chevy Chase no problem.”
The movie, A Futile and Stupid Gesture, also features Emmy Rossum, Seth Green and Will Forte.
McHale performs at The Laugh Shop on Friday and Saturday.
“We’re doing 19 shows,” he joked. “We’re going to do about 48 hours of comedy.”