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Seth Rogen

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SethRogenPremiere

Seth Rogen at the "Zack and Miri" premiere.

Seth Rogen (born April 15, 1982) is a Canadian actor, comedian, writer and film producer. He plays Zack Brown in Zack and Miri Make a Porno.

Zack and MiriEdit

Kevin Smith saw Rogen in The 40-Year-Old Virgin and was so impressed that he tailor-wrote the script of Zack and Miri Make a Porno for him. He was thrilled when Rogen agreed to play the part; Rogen was equally thrilled:

"I just loved it. I thought it was great, I thought the idea was really funny, I thought it was sweet, and I thought the romance of it worked really well."[1]

It was Rogen who suggested Elizabeth Banks for the role of Miriam Linky, having worked with her previously in The 40-Year-Old Virgin. Rogen claims that his favorite scenes to shoot were ones where he and Banks were walking and talking together[1]. Other friends working in the film include Craig Robinson, Gerry Bednob, and Ricky Mabe. Rogen also thought of having Brandon Routh and Justin Long play a gay porn couple.

Rogen's improvisational background is constantly present in his acting, and he tends to improvise during shooting. Smith is known for wanting his actors to go by the script. The two discussed the matter and each tried to be more flexible, with the result that some of the final movie is improv on the part of Rogen.

Rogen has said that his first experience with porn was finding a few pages from a porn magazine in a gutter in Chinatown.[1]. At Comic-Con 2008, he claimed that his favorite Kevin Smith film is Clerks.[2]


Early lifeEdit

Rogen was born and raised in Vancouver, British Columbia to Sandy, a social worker, and Mark Rogen, who works for non-profit organizations and as an assistant director of a Workmen's Circle. He has described his parents, who met at an Israeli kibbutz, as "radical Jewish socialists". He has one older sister, Danya, who is a social worker. Rogen attended a Talmud Torah school and Point Grey Secondary School, incorporating many of his classmates into his writing. He was also known for the stand-up comedy he performed at Camp Miriam, a Habonim Dror camp.[3] Rogen got his start in show business at age 13 after signing up for a comedy class. With his trademark deadpan humour, he placed second in the Vancouver Amateur Comedy Contest at 16, then headed south of the border to continue stand-up and acting.

CareerEdit

Early careerEdit

Rogen's first exposure to the entertainment field began with commercial work in Canada at the age of 13.[4] After trying his hand as a standup comic, Rogen snapped up his first starring role in the series Freaks and Geeks (1999-2000) with only two auditions. He played cynical, acerbic "freak" Ken Miller. Judd Apatow, the show's coproducer, was very impressed with Rogen's improvisational skills.[5] After the show was cancelled in the middle of its first season, Rogen was cast in a similar role in Apatow's second, also short-lived series, Undeclared (2001-2002), and went on to write several episodes. In 2001, Rogen also had minor roles in Donnie Darko (playing Ricky Danforth) and Dawson's Creek, in an episode he claims he never saw.[6] Following the cancellation of his second series in 2002, Rogen developed a soured attitude toward television, not wanting to act on another show unless Apatow was involved.[7]

Writing careerEdit

Rogen's first major writing job was for Apatow's second short-lived television series, Undeclared, for which he was hired as a writer before he was offered an acting role.[8] During the show's run, Rogen wrote one episode by himself and co-wrote four others.[7]

Rogen's experience with Undeclared paid off when he and his writing partner, Evan Goldberg, joined the writing staff of Da Ali G Show for its second season. In 2005, the Ali G Show writing staff, including Rogen and Goldberg, received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination in the Writing For A Variety, Music Or Comedy Program category. As it turned out, Rogen had signed on to the show for what became its final season; Da Ali G Show ended due to the creative decision that its mode of "surprise" comedy would become unsustainable if the show continued much longer. Rogen's association with the show's star, Sacha Baron Cohen, who had belonged to the same Jewish youth group, was not over, however; in a recent interview with Tokion (#55), Rogen claimed to have made uncredited contributions to Cohen's film version of Borat.

In 2008 Rogen won the Best Writing (Film) Canadian Comedy Award for Superbad. He had written the script for this 2007 comedy years earlier, as a starring vehicle for himself. The Superbad team then looked for "an 18-year-old version" of Rogen and chose frequent Rogen collaborator Jonah Hill (who is slightly less than two years younger).[9] Rogen also wrote the screenplay for the Owen Wilson vehicle, Drillbit Taylor, which is based on a 70-page scriptment written by John Hughes.[10]

Recent projectsEdit

Rogen returned to the big screen in 2005 with a major supporting role in Apatow's directorial debut The 40-Year-Old Virgin alongside Steve Carell. The film was a massive success, grossing $109,449,237 domestically ($177,358,395 worldwide).[11] Apatow then cast Rogen as the lead in the 2007 film Knocked Up.[12] Upon completing The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Apatow had approached Rogen about potential starring roles, but the actor suggested many high concept science fiction ideas. After Apatow insisted that Rogen would work better in real life situations, the two agreed on the accidental pregnancy concept that became Knocked Up[13], for which Rogen was nominated for Best Actor at the 2008 Canadian Comedy Awards, losing to Michael Cera for his role in Superbad which was written by Rogen. Cera had also been nominated for his role in Juno.

In USA Today's recent profile of the so-called "frat pack" group of contemporary actors, they mention those actors' rising salaries makes it financially wiser to cast newcomers like Rogen as supporting characters, citing his roles in Virgin and Dupree as successful examples.[14] When asked in an interview if he is in the group, Rogen has stated that he is not sure.[6][15]

Rogen and Apatow were behind the 2007 teen comedy Superbad at Sony Pictures. Rogen and Goldberg wrote the film, with Apatow as one of the producers. While Rogen did pen Owen Wilson's Drillbit Taylor, he did not appear in it since the script mostly involved high school students. Freaks and Geeks co-star James Franco reunited with Rogen for the Rogen/Goldberg-written comedy, Pineapple Express.[16] Rogen hosted Saturday Night Live on October 6, 2007.[17]

Rogen's next release is Kevin Smith's Zack and Miri Make a Porno, in which he costars with Elizabeth Banks[18]. He recently wrapped production on the Jody Hill-directed mall cop comedy Observe and Report.[19] He is set to costar with Adam Sandler in Apatow's third directorial feature, Funny People. Rogen will play a young, inexperienced comic while Sandler will play a mentor of sorts to Rogen's character; the film will have more dramatic elements in it than Apatow's previous directorial efforts.[20] Other co-stars include Eric Bana and Apatow's wife Leslie Mann.

In April 2008, Empire reported that Rogen and Evan Goldberg will write an episode for the animated television series The Simpsons. He will also voice a character in the episode.

After years of speculation, a feature film adaptation of The Green Hornet will be handled by Rogen and Evan Goldberg with a theatrical release of 2010. To prepare his role, Rogen's physical appearance and attributes will be changed through fitness routines. Rogen is also set to produce and take a supporting role in the film I'm With Cancer, from Mandate Pictures. Cancer is based on an autobiographical comedy script by screenwriter Will Reiser.[21]

Pineapple Express co-star James Franco has hinted about Rogen and Goldberg planning a crossover sequel to both Superbad and Pineapple Express.

ImprovisationEdit

Though Rogen has penned scripts for both film and television, his comedic stylings tend to rely heavily on improvisational dialogue. Apatow noticed this improvisation talent on the set of Freaks and Geeks, which influenced his decision to have Rogen write for Undeclared and pitch jokes for The 40-Year-Old Virgin.[5] As with most Apatow projects, the dialogue in Rogen's films is usually not what was on paper.[13] Rogen says he prefers improvised dialogue because it captures the essence of real friends spouting jokes.[22] Because Apatow never stops rolling after takes, allowing his actors to improvise differently each time, Rogen's three largest film roles to date (The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Knocked Up, and Pineapple Express) all achieved the rare milestone of shooting over a million feet of film, almost unprecedented for comedies.[13]

InfluencesEdit

Rogen has described the shock of being thrust into an industry where he is now working alongside the comedic icons he grew up watching, such as Will Ferrell, Owen Wilson, and Jim Carrey. Rogen cites the Adam Sandler album They're All Gonna Laugh at You! (which features Apatow at certain points) as the funniest thing he has ever heard, stating that the track "At A Medium Pace" was the seed for what became his comedic persona. Rogen was also a huge fan of the Da Ali G Show's first season, so it was a shock to suddenly work for Sacha Baron Cohen. Rogen cites the films Porky's and Bachelor Party, in addition to films by Kevin Smith, as inspirations for writing sex comedies.[23] In an interview with MTV, he said of Smith "I feel like my strengths were always kind of ripping off a Kevin Smith movie anyway. It's not a far departure."[24] Of Smith and his films, Rogen has gone as far as to say "I wouldn’t be a writer if it wasn’t for you and your movies."[25]

Personal lifeEdit

Rogen moved to Los Angeles at the age of 16, after Apatow discovered him in Vancouver.[5] During his late teens, Rogen's parents moved from Canada with him, but by the time he landed his second television series, his parents would live in both Canada and the United States.[7] Rogen still resides in Los Angeles. He continues to write and produce with longtime writing partner Evan Goldberg, with whom he has worked on Da Ali G Show, Knocked Up, Pineapple Express, and Superbad, the latter of which is a semi-autobiographical take on their longtime friendship. Rogen and long-time girlfriend Lauren Miller attended the film premieres of The 40 Year-Old Virgin, You, Me and Dupree and Knocked Up.[26][27] One of his most loved films is Army of Darkness.[28] On Rove Live he stated that his most watched movie was The Big Lebowski. When appearing on the British morning t.v. show Soccer AM he drew the team AFC Bournemouth out of a hat as he did not have a team to support, this is done by most celebrities who are not affiliated with a team.

FilmographyEdit

Year Title Role Notes
1999 Freaks and Geeks (TV series) Ken Miller Series cast
2001 Undeclared (TV series) Ron Garner Series cast, writer
Donnie Darko Ricky Danforth
2004 Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy Eager Cameraman Extra
2005 The 40-Year-Old Virgin Cal Supporting role, co-producer
2006 You, Me and Dupree Neil Supporting role
2007 Shrek the Third Ship Captain Voice only
Knocked Up Benjamin Stone Co-headlining role, executive producer
Superbad Officer Michaels Supporting role, writer, executive producer
2008 The Spiderwick Chronicles Hogsqueal Voice only
Drillbit Taylor Writer
Horton Hears a Who! Morton Voice only
Kung Fu Panda Master Mantis Voice only
Step Brothers Sporting Goods Manager Cameo role
Pineapple Express Dale Denton Co-headlining role, writer, executive producer
Fanboys Admiral Seasholtz/The Pimp/Star Journey alien 3 different small roles[29]
Zack and Miri Make a Porno Zack Co-headlining role
2009 Funny People Ira Lead role, executive producer
Monsters vs. Aliens B.O.B. Voice only
Observe and Report Ronnie Barnhardt Lead role
2010 The Green Hornet Britt Reid/The Green Hornet Lead role, co-writer
Kung Fu Panda 2 Master Mantis Voice only pre-production

Awards Edit

Year Result Award Category/Recipient(s)
2000 Nominated Young Artist Award Best Performance in a TV Series - Young Ensemble

for: Freaks and Geeks. Shared with cast

2005 Nominated Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Writing for a Variety, Music or Comedy Program

for: Da Ali G Show. Shared with writing staff

2006 Nominated MTV Movie Award Best On-Screen Team

for: The 40-Year-Old Virgin. Shared with Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, and Romany Malco

2008 Won Canadian Comedy Award Best Writing (Film)

for: Superbad

2008 Nominated Canadian Comedy Award Best Actor (Film)

for: Knocked Up

2008 Nominated MTV Movie Award Best Comedic Performance

Breakthrough Performance

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 The Story and About the Production at zackandmiri.com
  2. filmschoolrejects.com
  3. JewishJournal.com
  4. "Seth Rogen Biography"; Retrieved October, 27, 2006; Yahoo! Movies
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 "Interview with Judd Apatow"; Harris, Will; August 5, 2005; Bullz-Eye.com - Guys' Portal to the Web
  6. 6.0 6.1 "Interview with Seth Rogen"; Harris, Will; July 13, 2006; Bullz-Eye.com - Guys' Portal to the Web
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 "The Seth Rogen Interview"; Ariano, Tara (credited as Wing Chung); 2002; Television Without Pity
  8. "Rogen & Rudd From the Knocked Up Set "; Newgen, Heather; August 16, 2006; ComingSoon.net
  9. "SET VISIT: KNOCKED UP"; Dellamorte, Andre; August 10, 2006; Cinematic Happenings Under Development
  10. "Par twists into 'Drillbit' with Wilson"; Siegel, Tatiana; June 20, 2006; The Hollywood Reporter
  11. "Box Office Mojo - The 40-Year-Old Virgin" Retrieved October 27, 2006; BoxOfficeMojo.com
  12. "'Virgin' director to team with Seth Rogen" The Associated Press (NY); September 2, 2005; USAToday.com
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 "A (Kind of) New Star is Born"; Carrol, Larry; September 28, 2006; MTV Movies - Flick'd
  14. "'Frat Pack' splits"; Wloszczyna, Susan; December 6, 2005; USA Today.com
  15. "Movie File: Nicolas Cage, 50 Cent, 'Harry Potter,' Elisha Cuthbert & More"; Carroll, Larry; August 8, 2006; MTV.com - Movies - News
  16. Franco to reunite with 'Freaks' pals; United Press International; September 23, 2006; United Press International
  17. Bill Hader Online » Blog Archive » Seth Rogen to host SNL
  18. Kevin Smith & Co. make 'Porno'
  19. Seth Rogen Will Observe and Report - ComingSoon.net
  20. In the Future with Seth Rogen - ComingSoon.net
  21. Seth Rogen Will Try to Bring the Funny to Cancer" TV Guide. October 8, 2008. Retrieved on October 8 2008.
  22. "Seth Rogen" Epstein, Daniel Robert; December 13, 2005; Suicide Girls - Interviews
  23. "Seth Rogen Interview, Knocked Up"; Roberts, Sheila; MoviesOnline; Retrieved on 2007-19-5
  24. "Seth Rogen, Elizabeth Banks Are Ideal 'Porno' Stars, Says Kevin Smith"; Adler, Shawn; [1]
  25. http://silentbobspeaks.com/?p=365, The Man Who Would Be Zack.
  26. "Seth Rogen and Lauren Miller at the You, Me and Dupree premiere in Hollywood on July 10, 2006"; Granitz, Steve (WireImage.com); Retrieved October, 27, 2006; Photos for Seth Rogen on MSN Movies
  27. "Seth Rogen and guest at the Hollywood premiere of Universal Pictures' The 40-Year-Old Virgin - 8/11/2005"; Sciulli, John (WireImage.com); Retrieved October, 27, 2006; Seth Rogen Photos - Yahoo! Movies
  28. according to his commentary on Superbad DVD
  29. "Life on 'Mars'"; Schwartz, Missy; May 9, 2006; Entertainment Weeklys' EW.com

External linksEdit

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