Alec Baldwin and Jerry Seinfield Give Startup Advise

Well, not exactly.

But that’s how I interpretted this awesome interview from Baldwin’s Here’s the Thing podcast (h/t to Peter Slutsky for clueing me in to this awesome podcast many months ago, but that is now sadly being ended).

A couple of choice exchanges.

Here’s one on owning your craft and being involved with every detail:

Jerry Seinfeld: You want to be on the water? How do you want to be on the water? You want to be on a yacht? You want to be on a surfboard? I want to be on a surfboard. I don’t want to deal with a yacht. That’s a yacht.

Alec Baldwin: And you just also thought –

Jerry Seinfeld: Some people want a yacht to say, ‘See my yacht.’

And another exchange on focusing on the work, not the other stuff:

Jerry Seinfeld: Whatever it is. Yeah. Whatever it is. Let me tell you why my TV series in the ’90s was so good besides an inordinate amount of just pure good fortune. In most TV series, 50 percent of the time is spent working on the show, 50 percent of the time is spent dealing with personality, political, and hierarchical issues of making something.

Alec Baldwin: Mm-hmm.

Jerry Seinfeld: We spent 99 percent of our time writing, me and Larry. The door was closed. Somebody calls, we’re not taking the call.

Alec Baldwin: Right.

Jerry Seinfeld: We’re gonna make this thing funny. That’s why the show was good. I didn’t want to go from that to some H.G. Wells contraption machine –

Alec Baldwin: Right.

Jerry Seinfeld: – of trying to control the weather. That’s what these deals are. That’s what making a movie is. What’s a movie? It’s this giant machine. It’s this giant ship and everybody gets on it and they shove off, and nobody knows where it’s going.

Alec Baldwin: No. They don’t.

Jerry Seinfeld: And the captain is doing – where’s the captain?

Alec Baldwin: Yeah.

Jerry Seinfeld: He’s getting high and sleeping with the first mate.

Alec Baldwin: Yeah. He’s asleep, period.

Jerry Seinfeld: Yeah. So it’s too much time and energy spent on that is not the juice, the really good stuff is a great line.

I highly recommend you listen to the podcast or read the full transcript over on wnyc.org.

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