“Bringing Up Nepotism Baby” w. John Boyega | Crooked Media
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August 24, 2022
Keep It
“Bringing Up Nepotism Baby” w. John Boyega

In This Episode

Ira and Louis discuss NYT critic Lena Wilson’s feud with Bodies Bodies Bodies star Amandla Stenberg, Idris Elba not casting his daughter in Beast, their favorite Hollywood nepotism babies, House of the Dragon’s premiere, Harry Styles as the new king of pop, and Ben Affleck’s plantation wedding. Plus, John Boyega joins to discuss his new film Breaking, memories of pilot season in LA, and more.





Jon Lovett [AD]


Ira Madison III And we’re back with an all new episode of Keep It. I’m Ira Madison III.


Louis Virtel I’m Louis Virtel and I would normally never admit this, but I actually am ready to relinquish summer and I’ll tell you why. I finally got word that an Oscar movie coming out soon is a masterpiece. I can’t say who said it to me. I think it’s embargoed. But the new Cate Blanchett movie Tar, directed by Todd Field, who lasted In the Bedroom and Little Children and no other movies, is apparently a banger. And also, I need to tell myself to stop saying the word banger because I saw Meghan McCain say it in a tweet, which means that is now dead and buried.


Ira Madison III Banger, rad.


Louis Virtel No, rad is great. I keep being right about that.


Ira Madison III Just try to figure out what other words.


Louis Virtel Oh, yeah. Grim used to be a thing I said all the time. I actually should be bringing that back.


Ira Madison III You talk like you’re writing for Spin in the nineties.


Louis Virtel Yes. Read my new interview with Courtney Love.


Ira Madison III Of You’re Ready for Fall.


Louis Virtel Yeah. I mean, I within reason. I mean, summer is where we all do our best work spiritually, I feel. But I’m hoping for Oscar season.


Ira Madison III Pumpkin Spice?


Louis Virtel Now. No, I didn’t say that. I didn’t say that.


Ira Madison III Leaves. You’re ready for the leaves. You’re ready to.


Louis Virtel Being bundled up. Turning oOff the air conditioning and walking outside. People are miserable. I hate the vibe of fall.


Ira Madison III Crunch of leaves under your Steve Maddens.


Louis Virtel No, I’m not ready for evermore folklore season or whatever we’re calling it now.


Ira Madison III You, I mean, you’re always excited for Oscar season, though.


Louis Virtel Yes. Now, if if we just formally divided, you know, life into summer. Oscars. Spring. That would be lovely.


Ira Madison III Especially since I feel like this is the first real Oscar season.


Louis Virtel Meaning what?


Ira Madison III In a while says since the, well since lockdown.


Louis Virtel Oh, I  see yes.


Ira Madison III Since the pandemic started. This, this is the first year where movies are actually making money, too. So.


Louis Virtel Right, maybe Top Gun Maverick will be in the, you know, maverick world.


Ira Madison III I think I think Top Gun Maverick is going to get an Oscar nomination.


Louis Virtel Wait, For acting?


Ira Madison III I think make it a best picture nom.


Louis Virtel I didn’t like it that much.


Ira Madison III They want people to this. This is making, like, titanic numbers. There’s no way this movie is not getting nominated.


Louis Virtel Well, I mean, it would be. Yeah, the kind of Mad Max Fury Road of this year or something. But that movie to me was extremely innovative. In addition to being entertaining, this is just good old fashioned American entertainment.


Ira Madison III It’s Hollywood. It’s Americana.


Louis Virtel I’m going to go ahead and talk. I’m going to go ahead and dissuade the academy from going that direction. But.


Ira Madison III I’m launching a full scale consider for Tom Cruise.


Louis Virtel Wow. He needs the help. As you know, he has no machine of any kind behind.


Ira Madison III Listen, I did it as a Barb for Nicki, who is number one on Billboard for Super Freaky Girl, which honestly, I’m shocked. But the Barbs were mobilizing. They were streaming


Louis Virtel By the way.


Ira Madison III They were purchasing.


Louis Virtel They’re they’re a uniform political unit, that we understand.


Ira Madison III She was dropping more remixes and acapella versions than Taylor Swift. And Taylor already will drop like 50 versions of a single.


Louis Virtel Right. Also, it’s the first, what is it, solo female rap number one in some,


Ira Madison III Since Lauryn Hill, Doo Wop, That Thing.


Louis Virtel Which is crazy. But that wasn’t Bodak Yellow, a number one hit. What are we talking about?


Ira Madison III It wasn’t.


Louis Virtel So the statistic is it’s the first female rap solo to debut at number one since Lauryn Hill, which.


Ira Madison III Yes.


Louis Virtel Wow, you’d think that would happen all the time. CARDI Megan, what’s going on there now?


Ira Madison III Because. Cardi and Megan’s. Yeah. Cardi and Meghan’s like assisted you know there it’s featuring someone else. So


Louis Virtel Pathetic.


Ira Madison III It’s the first solo, you know? And I think that there is, you know, a spiritual succession from Doo Wop, That Thing to Super Freaky Girl, you know, because Nicki is like, you know what, Lauren? I am going to Doo Wop, That Thing.


Louis Virtel Yeah, I am the Jezebel of which you speak.


Ira Madison III Okay. Okay. Culture’s come so far since 1998


Louis Virtel You know, you better watch out. The Doo Wop, That Thing video, by the way, at one point we were watching that all the time. That is that remains one of the best videos ever. Just a perfect concept for a music video and also like perfect marketing. Like, see how she’s old school and the new thing you want to be a part of anyway, they really nailed it.


Ira Madison III It is wildly a perfect song that I know I brought this up last week with, like, This Is How We Do It, right?


Louis Virtel Mm hmm.


Ira Madison III Do Wop That Thing is a perfect song that you can throw on at any party. And, you know, the whites only side and the black side will go up.


Louis Virtel Which is how parties are organized.


Ira Madison III Yes. Yes, I have you know, I throw parties across segregation lines.


Louis Virtel But the lines are there. Yes.


Ira Madison III Yeah. The lines are there. It’s just like it’s just like the gym in Hairspray. Okay. But both sides will go up. But I don’t think doo wop has really been reclaimed as a white song.


Louis Virtel Correct. Yes. Though, that said.


Ira Madison III It’s not Baby Got Back.


Louis Virtel I do feel you will see a nervy type of white person sing all the lyrics to it to impress everybody. But I guess that’s just how all rap is now.


Ira Madison III I mean, like you when The Jump Off comes on.


Louis Virtel Oh, please. Excuse me, watch me make a Sprite can disappear in my mouth. I mean, I simply will do it.


Ira Madison III All right, we have got a show. I’m sorry, but unfortunately, we are wading into the Bodies, Bodies, Bodies discord.


Louis Virtel This is very an old school Keep It topic when just two people would have a skirmish on line and then we would shout at them for 40 minutes or whatever. I’m feeling very retro right now.


Ira Madison III It involves a femme, it involves a queer celebrity edit, involves a New York Times critic. This is definitely classic. Keep It.


Louis Virtel Yes. All right. So these are some of our greatest hits up you enjoy.


Ira Madison III And it’s also we’re waiting until like day 85 of discussing this thing. But.


Louis Virtel And it was supposed to be one DM. Yeah. Like it accidentally spiraled into this other thing anyway.


Ira Madison III But in honor of Lena Wilson, the New York Times critic who sparked this entire Bodies, Bodies, Bodies discourse this week, we’re also going to discuss our favorite children of nepotism in Hollywood, which I’m also going to we’re also going to discuss why I hate the term nepotism baby.


Louis Virtel Mm. Okay, that’s exciting. I mean, unfortunately, many of my favorite celebrities are nepotism products, so I, I, in a way I’m part of the problem that sad sometimes some but we’ll get into it but sometimes if you’re the child of celebrity, you have a specific, urgent need to separate yourself from that other famous person and establish yourself as something else, which I think sometimes makes the celebrity more interesting. Anyway, we’ll get there.


Ira Madison III And we will be joined today by the fantastic John Boyega to discuss his new film, Breaking.


Louis Virtel I still have a very vivid memory of him emerging in the movie Attack the BLOCK, which was a pretty that year and movies was pretty boring. And so that movie, which felt very current young at the time, it’s him and you know, Jodie Whittaker, teens, British sci fi alien movie. I remember when he was like the only exciting thing happening. So I wonder if he remembers that, too. We’ll get into it.


Ira Madison III All right. We’ll be right back with more. Keep It.


Ira Madison III <A.D.>.


Ira Madison III The film Bodies, Bodies, Bodies starring Amandla Stenberg, recently single Pete Davidson and recently married Lee Pace.


Louis Virtel And recently fucking gobbled up by gay men on the internet, Lee Pace. Every time you fucking turn around, somebody can’t believe he’s tall.


Ira Madison III I will say that Paul McCallion has a fantastic tweet. Writer, comedian, Paul Callan, that has a good tweet about Lee Pace only goes viral for big, tall and hot.


Louis Virtel Right. I mean.


Ira Madison III Which is fantastic.


Louis Virtel People have never seen the people who still have never seen Pushing Daisies. You know.


Ira Madison III They haven’t seen Wonder Falls, Okay. You know, they were not in the trenches like we were. They were not in the Bryan Fuller trenches watching our favorite shows get canceled left and right.


Louis Virtel So fantastic Emmy win for Kristin Chenoweth, former Keep It guest, By the way. Anyway, continue.


Ira Madison III So I am very glad that Lee Pace announced that he’s married in his GQ interview because there’s this very specific thing where. People will claim like a celebrity online and then run their likability into the ground. I think someone was like the Internet. The Internet tried really hard to Oscar Isaac Lee Pace.


Louis Virtel Wow. Right. I remember that those years of Oscar Isaac being our endless Tumblr boyfriend. Correct.


Ira Madison III So


Louis Virtel There’s usually one, you know, it became Timothy Shalom after a while. You know the guy.


Ira Madison III Yeah. Anyway, this movie hit theaters recently and a review from Lena Wilson, a lesbian film critic. This is important, by the way.


Louis Virtel Yes.


Ira Madison III I’m not just being a not just being Tucker Carlson here.


Louis Virtel A lesbian film critic ran her mouth. Yeah. It’s actually really fun to do a Tucker Carlson impression. I mean, do it in the privacy of your own home. We all don’t need to see it, but it’s fun.


Ira Madison III Anyway, a review from Lena has sparked a feud with Amandla and kicked off a debate across social media. And the one thing I want to say about this is why is it always a Lena?


Louis Virtel There are many varieties of Lena and they run amok in this pop culture universe.


Ira Madison III Whenever I see a Lena trending on Twitter, it’s never Horne.


Louis Virtel Dammit, you took my joke. I was going to use that.


Ira Madison III It’s been downhill. Okay.


Louis Virtel That was the last good one. I guess so. I mean, I enjoy things about actually most of the other. Lena’s in contention here, but Lena Horne. Yes, a cut above.


Ira Madison III Anyway. What did you think of the movie before we get into the discourse?


Louis Virtel This isn’t a movie that’s never going to be at my favorite type of movie like I’m going to. I’m never going to tell you, Oh, it’s the best movie of 2022 or something for what it is. I really enjoyed it and I thought. Rachel Sennott That’s who we should have our eyes on. I thought she was fabulous in it. She was in the movie Shiva Baby, if you saw that.


Ira Madison III Mm hmm. She was also in, if you recall, Call Your Mother on ABC, which I could not stop talking about, like, a year ago. Right. And I only bring this up because I ran into two of the cast members, Joey and Austin, last night At the Honk for Jesus, Save Your Soul premiere. And I was going in again about Call Your Mother and how much I love that show. And Rachel.


Louis Virtel Also, I want to say that Amandla Stenberg did give one of the best performances of the past, but of her five years in The Hate U Give which movie I don’t know that I need to see again, but was gripping at the time.


Ira Madison III She also she also managed to be compelling in that really boring, Damien Chazelle Jazz series.


Louis Virtel Oh my God. Right. Yeah. I forgot that Damien Chazelle hasn’t just given us whatever the three movies he’s given us.


Ira Madison III Yeah, I enjoyed the movie. I, I like the, I, you know, I thought that Pete Davidson was surprisingly, like, very funny in the movie.


Louis Virtel Mm hmm.


Ira Madison III The highlight was obviously Lee Pace’s abs and Lee Pace in that, um, in one of those glowing, you know, teeth whitening masks as well. Right. That was a good jump scare in the film, I will say that. I thought the dialog was really funny and I thought it’s a satire of Gen Z was was sort of really sharp until the third act.


Louis Virtel I felt the same way. It’s not something I need to see again. Like you’ve seen one parody in a way. You’ve seen them all. That said, for, you know, a satirical horror movie, I did laugh several times. I mean, it’s it’s just rare that I’m watching a horror movie other than Scream or something in the Scream franchise. And actually laughing. I remember You’re Next had some moments I thought were funny, but not a common experience for me.


Ira Madison III Yeah. Anyway, Lena Wilson wrote a review for the New York Times, and she said of the film, The only thing that really sets Bodies, Bodies, Bodies apart is its place in the A24 hype machine, where it doubles as a 95 minute advertisement for cleavage and Charlie XCX’s latest single. And first of all, bitch, I’m happy with that.


Louis Virtel Okay. Right. Where else am I going to get that? Are you pretending that Charlie XCS is hyped enough?


Ira Madison III As rigorous as Charlie XCX’s fan base is. We’re not getting to number one on Billboard. Okay, so we meet the hell no.


Louis Virtel You say the words Charlie XCX to my mother and she thinks that’s like a cruel nickname Lucy has come up with for Charlie Brown of.


Ira Madison III But the thing about this review is that obviously she reduces the film to a cleavage machine, which is wild considering there’s not a lot of cleavage in this film.


Louis Virtel It’s not I don’t have a lasting impression of cleavage when I leave the movie. It’s just I wasn’t thinking about it. I guess I wouldn’t be the proper audience for that either. So I don’t know. Maybe one kind of person is likelier to notice that than I am. But you know what? Actually, growing up, I’ve had several friends who’ve had breast reductions and I’m like, What are you talking about? Do you even but I’ve never looked below your neck before, so you could be making this up to me again. I’m saying I might not be the right person to make this judgment, but.


Ira Madison III The Illinois suburbs home of breast reduction.


Louis Virtel Yeah. You know, I guess, yeah.


Ira Madison III I will say my only lasting impression of cleavage from this film was Leigh Pace’s.


Louis Virtel Right. Maybe she meant that if she had specified that, that would have been almost progressive.


Ira Madison III Well, that would have been homophobic.


Louis Virtel See. Mm hmm.


Ira Madison III Which is what Amandla Stenberg was accused of being when she DM’d Lena on Instagram and said Your review was great. Maybe if you had gotten your eyes off my tits, you could have watched the movie. Which is funny.


Louis Virtel I laughed. Yeah, I thought it was kind of funny. I think it’s a little ambiguous as to what tone she’s going for because it is funny, but it’s like, is it cutting to the critic or is it cutting to A24? Or, you know, so you could sort of interpret it a couple of ways secretly.


Ira Madison III But Lena responded back with, Hey, Amandla, generally a big fan of your work, but this is sure something. Really wishing you well in your career and life. Have a nice night. And then, she posted it to Tik Tok.


Louis Virtel Where all the good journalism goes, by the way.


Ira Madison III If you’re a New York Times critic and you don’t have an accompanying Tik Tok, what do you do?


Louis Virtel No, you’re not getting the Pulitzer, that I know.


Ira Madison III I don’t want anything else to come of this. I am devastated to have received this message in the first place. I was a genuine, huge fan of hers, but I’m posting this because I don’t want this person who has more social power than me to think that it’s fucking okay to do something like this. It’s unfathomably weird to get. I don’t want you in the locker room while I’m changing bullying from a whole other lesbian. Girl. I don’t want this to go anywhere, but I am taking a private DM and making a Tik Tok about it.


Louis Virtel Right. First of all, there is something deeply dubious about taking a private message, even if it’s from a celebrity. In fact, it’s in particularly dubious because you’re pretending like the public is entitled to hear something because a public figure has said it to you. So already turning that into a moment where you’re quote unquote, reclaiming the narrative, but instead kind of just going after somebody is strange. And also, I just feel like this critic should expect that sometimes people in the review you’re writing about will reach out in a way and to react as if. I don’t know if you interpret what they say as homophobic, that’s one thing. But obviously Amandla is queer. So did she really think that anyway?


Ira Madison III Yeah. The I don’t want you in the locker room while I’m charging bullying is so. What a weird phrase.


Louis Virtel Yeah. Like, surely they’re not in a locker anyway.


Ira Madison III And then she goes on to say, Do you think she Instagram DM’d, Alison Willmore, Justin Chang and Anthony Wayne like this? Who also reviewed the film? Well, no, because I don’t think their reviews reduced the film to being a Russ Meyer film.


Louis Virtel Yeah. Right. Right. So, yeah. Weird comparison. All right.


Ira Madison III Well then, she kept going with. It’s always weird when the homophobia is coming from inside the house, but this is something else. Girl. I hate that this has basically become the slap.


Louis Virtel Sure.


Ira Madison III Because people there are actually people online acting like Amandla, shot this woman in the face.


Louis Virtel Actually, I thought Amandla response de-escalated it somewhat successfully. Of course, it didn’t actually end up de-escalating it, but she said, I just thought I would get out here really quickly because I’m receiving a lot of commentary on the Internet for being a very naughty girl and for setting a DM that I thought was hilarious. There’s a film critic, her name is Lena Wilson. She described the movie as a 95 minute advertisement for cleavage, which I thought was hilarious. I’m proud that a piece of work I was a part of was described in such a renowned publication. I thought it was hilarious. Well, according to her, she thought it was hilarious. I don’t know if you heard her say it 75 times, but anyway,.


Ira Madison III It’s definitely me when I think something’s hilarious, I say, you know, it was so hilarious. It was it was really hilarious.


Louis Virtel Meanwhile, Carol BURNETT Show. It’s really hilarious. It’s really hilarious. Tim Conway is really hilarious. But she continued, I think Lena was trying to make a commentary about 824 sexualizing me, sexualizing my body, exploiting young women in order to sensationalize them. I want to stop right here. So she’s actually calling out something that I feel could have been called out. You know, and she’s in an A24 movie, so I find that even kind of risky on her behalf in a cool way. But she goes, which I understand, I wear this tank top in the movie because me and the costume designer felt it fit the character well. I do get tired of people talking about my chest. It seems to me in Hollywood it’s not normalized to have boobs that are above an A or a B cup. So I felt like she is in fact acknowledging that the comment did have a bit of a barb in it, you know? So


Ira Madison III Yeah.


Louis Virtel I felt there was a mature response and a kind of a cool response, even though it’s dubious that she said something was hilarious 40 times.


Ira Madison III And it’s all it was nice to see her critique A24 in her comment too. You know, even though my biggest critique with A24 is that there are also an Urban Outfitters masquerading as a film production company.


Louis Virtel Correct. Yes.


Ira Madison III Lena then went on to say, I will not be checking her story, but I hope she gets well soon. So Lena implies that she didn’t even check out AMandla’s really thoughtful response, which I also think is a lie. I’m sure she watched it.


Louis Virtel I have the distinct feeling she spends a lot of time on the internet because you do get that impression.


Ira Madison III And I feel like I should post this to hold Amandla accountable. But it also really seems like she might be going through something so truly wishing the best, which then made me hate this woman more than I already did. Like, I thought it was funny at first, but now she’s implying that Amandla is unwell.


Louis Virtel Right. And I just want to say that I saw this woman’s Tik Tok. Initially, I thought it was, of course, Danny from A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila, and I was excited to see her. But Danny’s nature is kind, and I wasn’t getting that from this woman, so I was jolted.


Ira Madison III I want to know where this particular white woman voice comes from. There’s always this, like, Mount Holyoke, like inflection that comes from, like a specific white woman who’s also queer and needs to tell you something about yourself.


Louis Virtel Right.


Ira Madison III Like a specific inflection. And. And I heard it, and it was like nails on a chalkboard to me.


Louis Virtel The Seven Sisters, I blame all of you equally so Smith on down to Wellesley. Yeah.


Ira Madison III I think that being a New York Times critic and getting a DM from a celeb is probably something that’s happened before. It’s definitely happened before. It’s also before the days of DMS, like the celeb would have sent you an email or called you or like cursed you out at Sardi’s. I don’t know.


Louis Virtel Yes. Right.


Ira Madison III And I think every journalist has stories like this. And, you know, like if we like, you know, like when I off the cuff mentioned, you know, like Azealia Banks, you know, calling me out for you know, saying she was broke on this podcast, which I apologize for, but I thought that was funny, you know, or like everyone has a story that they can sort of reference from time to time, but to go on Tik Tok and make it a big thing I feel like is abusing your social power. Which is funny because she tried to claim that Amandla has more social power than her, but she’s the one who took it to Tik Tok and started to get it trending.


Louis Virtel And also, she’s a writer for The New York Times. Yeah, that’s one of the larger newspapers. If I’m not mistaken.


Ira Madison III It’s not it’s not bigger than Marquette University High School, The Flambeau. Okay. I had more circulation stuff.


Louis Virtel Lots of Journalism. Yeah, right.


Ira Madison III I had more circulation than the New York Times. I’ll let you know that.


Louis Virtel I’m sure you were reviewing the newest Kevin Little single, and everybody was eating it up.


Ira Madison III And it’s it’s she clearly took it to Tik Tok, because she’s looking to make her Tik Tok bigger. Like this, this woman is on Tik Toc constantly talking about how she’s an amazing culture critic. She’s a reader. She’s she’s just simply great. There some someone was sharing one of her old Tik Toc from February. It’s truly like a four minute Tik Toc about how she’s good at her job because of osmosis. She has no formal training. But cultural criticism is an art and she’s really fucking good at it.


Louis Virtel And without, as always, with geniuses, they have to tell you they’re good at the thing because you can’t figure it out on your own, you know? So we’re lucky that she was there to point out her own skills. And I simply love it when people can’t shut up about how they read. I find it endearing and rad, and it makes me want to be literary. Hearing you congratulate yourself for owning pages.


Ira Madison III Most of her Tik Tocs sounds like she’s strapped James Bond to a table, as she’s just pointing her evil finger at.


Louis Virtel I am a critic. Danielle Craig, like a sideways glance is figuring out how to get out of the room.


Ira Madison III Also, I just read The Poison wood Bible.


Louis Virtel Barbara King, solve your way out of this.


Ira Madison III I think. Anyway, I thought the entire thing was very funny and.


Louis Virtel Very internet. Yeah.


Ira Madison III Until how this woman jumped out the window. Like, she couldn’t. She couldn’t let it be funny. She had to ruin it. And then the internet had to ruin it by implying that Amandla was basically trying to kill this woman.


Louis Virtel The hate she is still giving. Yes. That’s what that movie’s about, anyway. Yeah. Funny old school Internet skirmish. I enjoyed it for a second. And also, it’s one of those things where everyone’s personality kept emerging like, Oh, I thought we were dealing with this one type of person. And then you turned out to be this other type of person. And then, Oh, Amanda thought you were kidding. Or did she? Anyway, lots of getting to question people’s motives again and again. A big old Clue game.


Ira Madison III I honestly hope it’s dead as a conversation, but if it’s not, I need a I need a new twist. Like, I need. I need someone else from the film to jump in.


Louis Virtel I also heard Lena Wilson’s dad is a prominent New York Times writer. I would love for him to jump in and be like, my daughter got the very best academic training. I don’t know. I’m picturing, like a sort of Richie Rich type parent figure jumping in here.


Ira Madison III The other thing about the one last thing I want to say about Lena is that she implies that, she went on her Tik Toc to imply that she’s so good at her job. And that’s why at like 24 years old, a barely edited review that she wrote hit the front page of The New York Times. And I like to point out, says that you are describing nepotism.


Louis Virtel Right. I’ve brought this up before. Fran Lebowitz talking about how actors in Hollywood are who are nepotism children are obsessed with saying, well, it got me my foot in the door, but I had to work really hard after that because the whole game is getting your foot in the door. That’s what everybody wants. The opportunity to be in the room. Yeah.


Ira Madison III Anyway, if you want more from Lena Wilson, she’s right there on The New York Times. She’s still posting her reviews. And I want to point out that her, her bio on The New York Times describes her as a project manager at The New York Times and a freelance writer covering film, TV technology and lesbian culture.


Louis Virtel Which I consider technology. It’s redundant. You’re a journalist, right? Edit it.


Ira Madison III Wally, my favorite lesbian or when we’re back. John Boyega joins us to discuss his new film, Breaking.


Ira Madison III <A.D.>.


Ira Madison III You know him from Attack the BLOCK, Star Wars and Steve McQueen’s recent, Small Ax. And now he’s back in theaters this week with the true life thriller Breaking. We’re thrilled to welcome to Keep It, the fantastic, John Boyega.


John Boyega How are you doing? Good.


Ira Madison III We’re great. Great. It’s a pleasure to have you here.


John Boyega Pleasure.


Louis Virtel The impression from looking at your filmography is that you have worked basically endlessly since about 2011. Like the nature of some of these movies is they’re so huge. They must have taken months and months and months to film. And does being that busy increase your appetite to make good movies, or is it ever just completely exhausting?


John Boyega It can be exhausting and it can increase your appetite. Right now, my appetite has been increased because I’m working with people who actually understand me and who actually have seen my previous work separate from Star Wars. It’s always complicated when you work in an industry of people who are based in the movies, of the mainstream kind of movies that you see, whereas in the kind of indies and other type like Half of the L.A. Sun, like Small Ax, My Darling, little things that I’ve done that where I’ve been able to be given the opportunity to show more versatility. So I say is a bit of is a bit of both. You know, it just comes in these random times where you just have to kind of adjust.


Ira Madison III Mm hmm.


Louis Virtel We just had Connie Britton on our show last week. Obviously a tremendous actor. But honestly, I look at just the actors you’ve worked with and you’re working with Viola Davis in The Woman King coming up, which obviously I’m thrilled about. Do you have favorite actors you’ve had kind of amazing moments with onscreen where you’ve learned something from them? Because I just think of somebody like I think it’s rare that somebody as young as you has worked with so many, like just sheer greats, basically since the beginning.


John Boyega Yeah, Yeah I’ve learned a lot, definitely from Viola, and this is just from conversations. I think obviously the work looks fun, but when we get on set, we’re all colleagues. So it’s a different even on my age is my age is like a different kind of vibe. But I listen to the stories that they tell and I listen when they get into that mode, because a lot of times the older actors, I had to work with you and so they kind of need there needs to be a mutual respect for you to be able to collaborate. But those moments where you know what the work, the vibe kind of fades a bit and then they step into kind of like the O.G. status. You know, mentorship are really, really important. But I just listen to the stories that they that they tell and the stories that they share. It’s been really good so far.


Ira Madison III Mm hmm. Um. You had an interview recently, too, with The Daily Beast where you talked about, you know, you have this conversation with Daniel Kaluuya about, you know, the work you wanted to do in the future and just what does it look like? You know, like I feel like two honestly, iconic actors sitting down and just talking with each other about acting and talking about like what you want to do. Like how did your relationship with him sort of form? And I feel like, is that someone you want to do like work with in the future? You know, I know he’s in the Peele universe a lot.


John Boyega Yeah, yeah. No, most definitely. I love to work with him in the future. But Daniel is someone that I knew coming up from the UK, who laid sucker punch and I just wait behind to meet him. I hadn’t done any work at the time, so I just wanted to ask for advice. So I think that’s just the energy of our relationship from when we first met, the first time I met him out of asking for advice. So good advice is actually quite good. I always invite him over, just just try to connect and just to share, share knowledge. Daniel was just slightly older than me, and Daniel has a perspective that I think is quite unique and interesting. And any time we can break bread and just share minds, especially navigating through this industry, and then especially as black Brits is something that is is quite good for the path that we’re on.


Ira Madison III What would you say is maybe like your favorite like nugget of advice you’ve gotten from him over the years? And also maybe just talk a bit about that whole thing about yes, too, being black people in this industry, but also British in the industry, too.


John Boyega I mean, the advice is just based on what I’ve said last past few days, which is, you know, I just work with people who want to work with you when you work with people to understand what you’re what you do and work with people that actually want to explore the versatility that you carry. And not necessarily working with people that can sometimes pigeonhole you and box you in and have the wrong definition of your talent. And I think that’s very important because Jordan Peele had to see something specifically in Daniel to also give him this kind of consistent, strong work that Jordan’s been giving him over the years. And that in itself is a testament to finding somebody who’s on the same page with you, who’s creatively aligned with you. And I think that that’s what we’re doing, that especially after the Star Wars era has just granted me a much, much more healthy back career that I’m more comfortable in.


Louis Virtel Who would you say are creative collaborators you’ve had who you felt surprised to be simpatico with? Surprised to have the connection like they understood what you brought in a way that you couldn’t have anticipated.


John Boyega I wouldn’t I wouldn’t I wouldn’t say I was surprised because they were all black. Sometimes, look sometimes, You just get the people, them, and then they just understand, you know? But, you know, included in that is is is Abi Corbin. You know, who you come in as the director of Breaking and done a fantastic job. And I think that we meshed on a level that was quite important to me because, you know, it was such a quick turnaround time before I got the scripts. And then when we got to set and Abi, the collaboration, the detail that she had, the documentation was so specific, she had details down to how Brian walked, how he spoke, you know, just different details about him and her offering me this information made me feel seen as an act. So it’s kind of like you’re giving me this expressive detail, even detail when it comes to his body language, his voice, because, you know, I do this, you know, that I transformed self. You know, I don’t play when it comes to my skill set. So for her to acknowledge that and then for us to be on the same level was was fantastic.


Ira Madison III Speaking of people like you’ve worked with as well, you’re with Nicole Beharie in break egg and even going back to Attack the Block, you know with Jodie Whittaker, I find it interesting that like the three of you and I’m sure other people you’ve worked with too have been like people who’ve been under intense scrutiny for like genre things that they’ve done. You know, Jodie was the first female doctor and dealt with a lot of that. And then Nicole Beharie, you know, dealt with her own thing on Sleepy Hollow. Like, is that something that like you and maybe Nicole, like, bonded over being black people in these sci fi things that, like, there’s a small vocal white minority that’s just like always going to attack people who step into these roles.


John Boyega They would wish we bonded because of them.


Ira Madison III Yeah.


John Boyega They ain’t a consideration like that. Nah bro. Nah, nah. We did it. We did it. I mean, what we bond on is the sheer excitement. Nicole specifically, Sleepy Hallow,. I had watched. I’d actually been in L.A. doing pilot season while Sleepy Hollow, as always, was coming out. So when I saw the billboards, I was kind of like, you know, that was motivation for me being in town wanted to book a pilot, you know, hopefully get, know, get a TV series. I think that the work that everybody has done previously is something that you fixate on more than anything. And, you know, the whole reason why you collaborate and why even chose a project in the first place is because you hear that, you know, individuals like Nicole and Selena’s and Michael are attached and want to come on board. So that’s where the bonding happens, I guess, when it comes to kind of like sharing minds, when it comes to trolls and stuff, which is cutting them out, just talking shit.


Louis Virtel Now, wait, I, I would not have guessed you were somebody who had to afford L.A. pilot season ever. I look at your projects and, you know, there are some, you know, American franchises and stuff. But do you have any stories from pilot season in L.A.? Because that seems like a pretty treacherous undertaking.


John Boyega It was treacherous. And I did pilot season L.A. with public transport. So when people come and say my name, you know, I don’t know, you know, but also I, I commend I commend myself when it comes to that as well, because that’s the the concept I always tell people. I always tell people that it kind of reminds me of going to the gym and transforming your body. You know, when you go to the gym, you go for like six months, you transform your body, you come back. I’m like, who’s going to be more surprise you or the people seeing you for the first time in six months? And it’s usually going to be the people because they don’t know the specifics of the work you put in the early hours. And the illusion of success is to kind of like scribble out those moments and it just looks like fast paced to success back to back and you know that helps us in gain are getting the positivity out there but at the same time yeah definitely a step in some times. You know I got lost in Skid Row because the busses, I had to understand the busses because, you know, I was in the opposite way. I was staying in Santa Monica, I’ve stayed everywhere. I’ve stayed in Santa Monica, I’ve stayed up in Inglewood. I’ve stayed up in Los Feliz, so all over the place. So I’ve just done done my time, I’ve done my time. Yeah.


Louis Virtel I’m trying to think of how the bus would ge?t what pilot.?I guess if you stayed downtown, maybe you could get lost on Skid Row or something.


John Boyega I think one time I stayed downtown with some small little in a room in somebody’s apartment. So I got the I rented out the room and stuff to me and stuff. I’ve just been I’ve just been around and I’ve been lost several times because pilot season is back to back. It was about three projects, sometimes at three auditions a day, sometimes maybe even four. And then I was staying with like a whole bunch of acting students in Runyon. At the end of Runyon Canyon. This is my little student accommodation there for me. I’ve been about, you know, I’ve been coming to L.A., you know, eight years ago if I coming. So it’s like a long time ago. It’s been, it’s been good.


Ira Madison III One of my favorite things where the actors talk about, you know, like their early, you know, auditions and things and L.A., you know, and especially like a pilot season thing is the people that they were constantly seeing or the people that they’d be up against and like who they now see, are colleagues of theirs. And they’re like, remember when we didn’t book like Rookie Blue or whatever? Are there people are there are people that you remember being like in the trenches with you? And now you see them and you’re like, hey.


John Boyega Michael B. Jordan. Michael B. Jordan. We were auditioning for Spike Lee’s The Brick. Spike Lee’s The Brick. And I think I recognized him because he had been in The Wire already. I think he had been in The Wire and I recognized him. But he was doing press ups at the audition because he was auditioning to be Boxes in that. I just remember these dude’s did press ups, I reckon after that because that’s the dude from The Wire is a huge fan of The Wire I’ve always always kind of been a huge fan of everybody’s ever been slightly involved in that show. So I recognized him straight that isn’t that Michael. Michael B And then obviously, look at him now, which is which is which is fantastic.


Louis Virtel I guess we should talk about The Wire for a second since obviously your costar Michael K Williams was on it. Did that show come up a lot on set? I mean, how could it not? The Wire is one of those shows where there’s no second one of them. There are. Of course, gritty dramas in the world. But The Wire is second to none in this universe.


John Boyega No, it didn’t. It didn’t come up. Only came up once. For me to say I really liked you in that. And that was like the beginning, kind of beginning conversations, everything else. Then it became about the work because it’s so intense. It’s an Indie movie, you know how that is. I feel like the bigger the budget, the more time to have fun on set. That’s why I have Clocks. There you go. Some budgets just this is just a film that you don’t have time to even talk on set and you just find the fun moments within that.


Ira Madison III Well, I mean, then I would imagine you would have had a lot of time to have fun on the Star Wars that were obviously everyone loved your relationship with Oscar Isaac. How did that evolve over three films?


John Boyega Yeah, yeah. I mean, it was blatant. I think the chemistry was it was one of the main catalysts for Oscar to even get in a role in the first place and for us to even been partnered up because I would auditioned with another actor. He was very, very talented as well, but ideally it came down to chemistry and myself and Oscar, I don’t know what it  is, as soon as I saw him I just thought die laugh, I just start laughing. It’s just that bromance, you know what I mean, it’s just that’s just my guy, you know? So with that, chemistry was always something that people really, really enjoyed in the movies.


Louis Virtel Have you ever had chemistry with an actor that I don’t want to say wasn’t there when you were just talking? But like something else emerges once you’re doing the scene with them and you’re like, Whoa, what the fuck is that?


Speaker 2 Oh, yeah, yeah. I say, I say Jamie Fox. But you ain’t seen that movie yet.


Ira Madison III Okay. All right.


Louis Virtel True.


John Boyega Yeah. I feel like that with Jamie. I thought that on set we were working with each other all day on that role so I feel like we found some real cool moments that we didn’t expect to find when we were walking on that set. And that’s just because Jamie’s got that talent for improv. And me, I don’t mind going back and forth on that. So, you know, when you put two of us in the scene together, sometimes you find you find some some some different type of magic that you’re able to make. And that’s something for me as an actor, I’m like, wow, that’s. That’s real cool.


Ira Madison III Mm hmm. What I really love is that, you know, you’re a, you know, trained theater actor as well. And I have to imagine that the kind of roles that you had pre, you know, launching into Hollywood were a lot more varied and a lot and a lot of like just sort of like things that might seem like a left field for people who now like your film work now. Are there any roles that you played in theater that, you know, you sort of like think of fondly or something that like you did before on stage that you’re really like, I can’t wait to have a firm like this where I can show people that I can do this kind of thing.


John Boyega Oh, yeah. I’ve done a full contemporary dance show at the National Theater at the Cottesloe. Okay. I’d love to. I’d love to do it. I’d love to do a film that goes into contemporary dance body movement, something that allows me to dance, be free of all that energy. I’d done another play called Wojciech at the Old Vic Theater, but a soldier struggling with PTSD and having illusions go for some some serious mental health issues. And that, I felt was was a very, very powerful role. I would love to do love to do publicly. And then I would want to be one of the ensemble dancers in that MJ The musical. I just want to come in.


Louis Virtel Oh.


Ira Madison III One of my friends, Wonzay, is in that musical and I’ve seen it twice already and it’s, it’s really fucking fantastic.


John Boyega It is really bloody good, mate. It’s so good. It’s so good. I love the stage. The stage. The stage is where you find your versatility. And then you come into Hollywood movie making and Hollywood seeks to identify you. But it’s weird. It’s like they identify you within the roles. It’s like you have to be the role. And that’s not how actors are trained. You know, that’s not that’s not even actor. That’s not how it works. You know, it’s it’s it’s not about me at all. It’s more about what I can do to transcend and become the character. And I think on stage that is praised more than sometimes than in the Hollywood style of filmmaking.


Louis Virtel Are there qualities and characters you’ve played that have been conferred upon you by like, you know, casting directors? Like, Oh, he is like that character he played once upon a time and they’re just totally wrong. Do you ever feel, like, misrepresented by the work you’ve done?


John Boyega Definitely. And we just stop that. I mean, that, you know, but no work I’ve done. It’s been mostly requests. Work I’ve done, most likely because they they recognize that even though even with Finn like, you know, when J.J. said that Finn is not Finn is not an everyday hero. He’s going to start off this vulnerable position where he’s got this small little afro is slightly more Quidditch like even looking at Force Awakens like I’m not like that. Even at that age, I wasn’t like that. So that was every character that I’ve played. I’ve had to kind of change something. He was a walk the talk accent. It’s it’s because I like to play. I like to I don’t want to be myself on screen unless let’s go make documentaries. That’s a whole different format.


Ira Madison III Umm, you’ve worked with, you know, like JJ, as we said, you know, like Kathryn Bigelow already, Ryan Johnson and then Gina Price, by the way, and The Woman King who I, I adore her. I think she’s one of my favorite film directors as a person who, you know, like is looking at people who you want to work with, people who are going to understand you. Are there particular maybe directors or other creators who you like you have your eye on? Like, I want to do something with them?


John Boyega Yeah, I definitely want to collaborate with Steve McQueen. That would be fantastic to do to do, I think Malik Vitthal, who directed Imperial Dreams. We’ve spoken and he wants to me to really transform and he’s got something real cool for me. So we’ve been we’ve been cooking in cooking in the lab as most of the people I worked with worked with before. Because at this stage, you know, we have a little bit more respect for yourself and seek to collaborate with directors who also have they would have done the work before and all that kind of stuff as well as me. But also directors who actually know of you, who actually know what you can do, you know of them. And there’s that kind of mutual synergy. We go, Oh, let’s go and collaborate on something. I’m a little bit much more strict when it comes to when it comes to that, because I just find it severely important.


Louis Virtel I was like fascinated by a quote you gave recently where you talked about how it’s sort of exhausting, basically to have to keep paying respect certain times, like how it’s expected of you to be sort of deferential. And you said you can pay respect, but sometimes you’ll be overpaying and selling yourself short. And I, I feel like.


John Boyega The amount. Like. Yeah.


Louis Virtel What are your experiences with that? I just thought that was kind of fascinating and probably ongoing struggle that an actor faces, like, how much do I have to be prove I’m, you know, fine to work with or whatever.


John Boyega You get you get fame and you get a bit of money. You just have to understand a lot of people are going to assume you’re an asshole because fame and money in folklore churns out assholes. So in that sense, you’re fighting against really intense assumptions that some assumptions where you can’t blame the audience for feeling that way, because that’s an example that other people have left behind as well. And that’s what, you know, we all, to a certain extent, our experiences and what we’ve kind of taken in. But then with that, you then realize that, you know, you need to, you need to learn how to be calm in the most interesting experiences, because people can misjudge you, can judge your character and then can misjudge whether or not you’re good enough to work with and all that kind of stuff. And a lot of the time is, you know, severe, severe misjudgment and is because we dodged a nuanced conversation which will give you the detail, which be like, oh, okay, we’ll both cool. And so that’s why I’m like, find people who are committed to listening to you, not people who are committed to misunderstanding you. And there’s a lot of that, you know, in the world because sometimes, you know, people don’t do the work to understand they do to what to respond, you know, and that’s what I’m maneuvering right now.


Ira Madison III Well, thank you so much for talking with us today.


Louis Virtel God, what a pleasure.


Ira Madison III Yeah, I mean, Louis and I were talking about it before, I just feel like it’s 2011 when, like, Attack the Block first hit, that movie was so phenomenal in like a year where, like, there weren’t a lot of great movies that year. It felt new and it felt fresh.


Louis Virtel You were like, the only exciting thing from the time I. Specifically, all the movie bloggers were like, Oh, John Boyega. Well, that’s exciting.


John Boyega I think I would like the way they got that off The Red Box, was frightening.


Ira Madison III Breaking, is out in theaters August 26 and The Woman King with Viola Davis and They Cloned Tyrone with Jamie Fox are out later this year.


Ira Madison III <A.D.>.


Ira Madison III So we got into nepotism a bit by discussing prominent lesbian Lena Wilson. But also, Idris Elba is on the promo tour for his new film Beast, in which he plays a father protecting his two daughters from lions on a South African nature preserve. During an interview with The Breakfast Club, Idris mentioned how his own daughter auditioned for the movie but ultimately was not cast, which has sparked another online debate about nepotism in Hollywood. And I would like to, one, talk about this, but then also talk about our favorite nepotism babies in Hollywood. And I only brought up that I hate that word because I don’t know, something about saying nepotism baby, it’s just, it’s just doesn’t roll off the tongue for me. It feels like, say, Santa, baby.


Louis Virtel Right?


Ira Madison III You know?


Louis Virtel Mm hmm.


Ira Madison III I like saying Muppet Baby. Nepotism baby sounds creepy. Makes me sound like Woody Allen.


Louis Virtel Yeah, it feels very clinical. It should. There should be something a little bit slangy-er.


Ira Madison III Yeah. You know, I feel like a 20th Century Fox exec: bring in the nepotism babies.


Louis Virtel Yeah. I want to say about this Idris Elba story. Not only was she not cast, but specifically she wasn’t cast because, quote, the chemistry wasn’t right, which I have to say feels so insulting to her. But I think that’s the rough part of that story, because otherwise, actually, it’s kind of a good story to hear, right? Like, all right, they gave the girl that opportunity, but it wasn’t in the bag. They wanted the movie to still be, you know, achieve a certain standard. And so they cast somebody else. But, man is that funny?


Ira Madison III Baby, you better run a 23  and Me, because if the chemistry is not there. What’s your daddy hiding?


Louis Virtel Yeah. Beast of what nation? We’re not sure. We have to figure out where you’re from.


Ira Madison III I want to say that I saw Beast this weekend and. She would have been fine in the movie.


Louis Virtel Oh, yeah? Oh, you think so?


Ira Madison III I think she would have been fine. I think she couldn’t have been worse.


Louis Virtel Oh, interesting. And that’s too bad.


Ira Madison III Acting was not the highlight of this film, even. Let’s just put that out there.


Louis Virtel Well, all right.


Ira Madison III And also, as we’re about to discuss our favorite nepotism babies in Hollywood, I just want to point out that I dislike with black celebrities don’t give their kids the opportunities that white celebrities have, because I feel like there’s already like, basically every fucking celebrity we like came from nepotism. You know? And I dislike this idea that, you know, like black celebrities, like, have to work harder to get where they are. It’s like, let’s even this playing field now. You know?


Louis Virtel And also, maybe they should actually just get to it a lot faster. Like if you’re a black celebrity and you have a kid, usher that child on to film.


Ira Madison III Give,  give them a role.


Louis Virtel Push the bassinet on it. Yeah. Right.


Ira Madison III Just like the Penguin in Batman Returns, like, tossed that, toss that baby out. Okay. Toss him into Hollywood. More black parents should really be like Norma Jean’s mom. Okay.


Louis Virtel Yeah. There it is. There it is. My favorite nepotism baby, my number one has to be Jane Fonda, because once again, it’s about the comparison to Henry Fonda, which. I enjoy the movie Jezebel and I enjoy The Grapes of Wrath. He is not that compelling to me as an actor. He’s one of those people where I feel like men, just like the stony ness. They like that he’s dealing with emotional issues, but he’s not cracking. So there is a vulnerability issue there, which Jane Fonda herself has recounted numerous times, chuck her memoir. That’s a very fraught relationship. And he is a very hug averse father, shall we say. Meanwhile, as.


Ira Madison III Well, he’s not giving hugs now.


Louis Virtel No, certainly not. Certainly not. But her performances were always had searing vulnerability in them and had, you know, she seemed to be kind of shooting daggers into your soul whenever she gave you know, we’re talking about the therapy scenes in Klute or her big moments as a reporter in the China syndrome. And so compared to Henry Fonda, not only do I find her more talented, but I find her compensating for the ways in which she lacked as an actor. So I’ve always thought that dichotomy was more interesting. And also, of course, there is simply no second one of that woman. We’ve had her on the show, of course. Just the way she does not flinch when just taking on a completely new here’s an old word cause or type of movie role. She’s so game to energize people and be energized, be an active participant in the universe and all the kind of cool ways one can be and taking advantage of celebrity in cool ways. She’s always been aware that, like, if you’re going to be a celebrity, like there are advantages to being one and why don’t I do the ones that are most useful to everybody? So I think that’s why she’s my number one. Who’s your number one nepotism baby?


Ira Madison III I’ll tell you in a minute. But I do want to chime in that obviously, yes, I love Jane for not just how she utilizes celebrity, but also like how she just enjoys the process of acting. You know, like she she’s an A-list actress who never had a problem jumping into, like, a film like Monster in Law.


Louis Virtel Yeah.


Ira Madison III You know. And do it, do it. Doing fun shit like that instead of like, boring us with like she she could have transitioned into just being like, a very boring actor who’s only trying to get Oscars all the time. And I appreciate that she doesn’t do that.


Louis Virtel Right. Yeah. And also even, you know, just like a traditional comedy, like 9 to 5, she took it. She’s like, actually, this can be extra progressive in X, Y and Z way too, you know. So she saw like opportunities to be, you know, Jane Fonda, the activist even, and seemingly silly movies.


Ira Madison III You know what? Tangential question, Oscar clip. The Twitter account that I love to follow, I think, retweeted this question about who was the best Oscars acting winner of 1971. And I think tough questions, a hard choice between Jane Fonda and Cloris Leachman.


Louis Virtel Yes. Also, I mean, got Gene Hackman in the French Connection. I feel the French Connection doesn’t really hold up as much as people would want it to, but he’s obviously one of the greatest actors ever. But Jane versus Cloris, I mean, you’re not going to make me choose. So.


Ira Madison III I’ve got a gun right now, Louis.


Louis Virtel Oh, God. I do love the therapy scenes in Klute. I guess I would say that. I guess she simply has more to do. So I would say. Jane.


Ira Madison III Okay.


Louis Virtel At one point, I had the entire first therapy scene in that movie memorized and I would lip sync it at parties. So if you’re ever at a party with me, this is what you can expect.


Ira Madison III Yeah. So if you get to a party and Louis is there, hop right back into that Uber?


Louis Virtel Yes. I’m wearing a shag wig sitting in front of a TV and talking about how it’s fun to be a prostitute.


Ira Madison III I think my favorite is Tracee Ellis Ross.


Louis Virtel Interesting. Number one, and why is that? She does seem to me to be very she’s obviously a very funny actress and also awards host. I always like her on an award show. But additionally, she has a secret like alpha thing. Like haha, don’t fuck with me. Fuck you fierce, is how I would describe it.


Speaker 1 I think she has a really sort of like cool demeanor about her and I think that I would describe her as my favorite because she’s one of the ones who still has her mom’s last name, but people are always shocked to discover that Tracee Ellis Ross is Diana Ross’ daughter. I feel like she has forged enough of her own path in Hollywood, where she’s become an iconic black celebrity and her mom’s an iconic black celebrity. And even some black people still doubt that, though they’re always like discovering that Tracee is Diana’s daughter. And I think that is the success.


Louis Virtel And also, they’re very different. But also, Tracee Ellis Ross humor illuminates something about her mom, which is that she also kind of has that humor, too. So it’s sort of like by being introduced to Tracee Ellis Ross is like daffy ness and, you know, specificity, you realize, oh, that’s actually not so much different than Diana Ross, we just think of as this, you know, queen of several genres of music, but mainly for me, disco.


Ira Madison III Yeah. And I would also say that through her acting, I feel like she’s really differentiated herself from her mom, because it’s not purely singing, you know?


Louis Virtel Yeah.


Ira Madison III We’re going to ignore that movie she did with Dakota Johnson.


Louis Virtel Actually. I mean, I would kind of compare her to Maya Rudolph, right? Yeah. You know whose mother is Minnie Riperton. Obviously, she died very young, so we don’t get to learn as much about her personality. But there is like a well, you can descend from this regal songbird type and be a completely silly person. That’s kind of life affirming, I think.


Ira Madison III Yeah. I mean, obviously, there’s other choices we could have picked, you know, like Carrie Fisher.


Louis Virtel Yeah, I was Carrie Fisher, another person where it’s like I mean, she is so, I would compare her to Miley Cyrus, another nepotism baby, in that they specifically feel disillusioned with the things that usually ruin former child actors, which is they they were immediately not obsessed with self-seriousness. They were not. You know, reliant on the three or four things that made them famous as a very young person. They immediately moved in different directions, you know? Carrie Fisher was not just the imp in the movie, Shampoo. She then became an author and, you know, a comic in her own right and a great supporting actress in movies like When Harry Met Sally, etc.. And Miley Cyrus, of course, has, you know, after Hannah Montana, she’s like, actually, I’m these 70 other fucking weird things are going to discover. And she’s avid and enjoying those parts of herself, so it’s kind of cool to see that.


Ira Madison III Yeah, I mean, Miley Cyrus for a period became the original Saweetie.


Louis Virtel Right. Wow. I’ve never thought of it that way. Yes.


Speaker 3 Which speaking of Saweetie, also one of my favorite nepotism babies.


Louis Virtel Because her parent is who?


Ira Madison III Well her mom is Trinidad Valentine, who was like a video vixen and like Nelly’s Ride With Me and DMX’s What These Bitches Want. But also, M.C. Hammer’s her uncle, Gabrielle Union is her cousin.


Louis Virtel What the fuck?


Ira Madison III And also and also Snoop Dogg is our cousin.


Louis Virtel That’s what. What.


Ira Madison III My favorite.


Louis Virtel How did they arrange that?


Ira Madison III My favorite industry plant.


Louis Virtel Yeah. Jesus. Every which direction on the family tree is like somebody who should be on this show. Anyway, how bizarre. Another favorite of mine, of course, is Anjelica Houston. Just because how did a like a woman who shaped like an exotic glass of wine and whose comic sensibilities are so droll and dark. Descend from John Houston. Okay. He’s got some dark sensibilities, actually, but you would never think that they were related. You certainly would never think she was related to her grandfather, Walter Houston, who’s, you know, among other movies, Fabulous and Treasure of the Sierra Madre.


Ira Madison III Well, I mean, if we’re talking about people who we love, who you would not think about them being related to, you know, the person who got the foot in the door. My homegirl, Angelina Jolie.


Louis Virtel Mother of God. I mean, to bring up Jane Fonda God when she talks about Jon Voight, she goes, you know, once upon a time he would be there with me at these protests. Like something in Jon Voight’s brain cracked.


Ira Madison III And isn’t he opposite Jane Fonda in Coming Home? Her other Oscar win.


Louis Virtel Yeah, they both won Oscars for that movie. Yeah.


Ira Madison III I mean, yeah. It’s so weird to imagine, like, Jon Voight being a contemporary of Jane Fonda and sort of being a dope person and then becoming the person he is now.


Louis Virtel No. I mean, by the way, speaking about the same movie, also in that movie is Bruce Dern, which brings me to the great nepotism Baby.


Ira Madison III Laura Dern.


Louis Virtel Laura Dern. Which that to me is a really good answer because she doesn’t really remind me of her mom, who’s a great actress, Diane Ladd. And of course, Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, a  number of movies, Wild at Heart, moving on. Nor does she remind me of Bruce Dern. And yet she loves her family, brings them up constantly. When she won her Oscar, she was sitting right next to Diane Ladd. It’s just a family that really gives you life because they’re still, you know, obviously Bruce Dern and Dianna are not together, but like Laura specifically has ties to both of them. That’s always been cool to say.


Ira Madison III You know, it’s funny, too, is a lot of the celebrities we love are nepotism babies, but also, a lot of them are from this this old Hollywood thing that used to happen of just like plucking a hot person out of obscurity.


Louis Virtel Yeah. Uh huh.


Ira Madison III But it’s usually it’s. Is it a usually like men like. Like a like a Brad Pitt or something? Who is on my hit list now. By the way.


Louis Virtel But did you see Bullet Train?


Speaker 3 No, I saw that. I saw the FBI report about him terrorizing Angelina and his kids in the air like nightmare at 20,000 feet with Brad Pitt. So sorry.


Louis Virtel That’s a wrap on that.


Ira Madison III I’ve been I’ve been rewatching the scene where he gets shot and burn after reading a lot.


Louis Virtel Oh, that’s normal. Just playing it again and again. Yeah.


Ira Madison III It’s either that or the Meet Joe Black car crash.


Louis Virtel Oh, my God. Plenty of moments in that movie that bear Marcia Gay Harden, we speak her name.


Ira Madison III But, um, you know, I feel like it’s just the there’s the era of, like, a Brad Pitt or something being like, just a hot person walking around, being plucked out by a casting director.


Louis Virtel Right now, the. The Hedy Lamarr universe of filmmaking.


Ira Madison III Yeah. Which is. Which is the usual like American dream. You know, you move to Hollywood, you’re like, I’m just hot, you know? Right. That’s how I’m going to get a role. And it’s just the hot people competing with, you know, the children of celebrities. And I will say, shout out the children of celebrities for at least evening the playing field for average to sometimes ugly looking people getting getting film roles though I mean it because like otherwise it would just be hot people are movies and that’s just putting their, you know, not so hot kids and movies.


Louis Virtel Strange children.


Ira Madison III Yeah yeah. Well, you know, evens the playing field.


Louis Virtel Yeah, it gives hope to everybody else and it’s hope that’s unwarranted because they are related to celebrities. But hope is a good feeling.


Ira Madison III Yeah. You know, strange children like Nicolas Cage.


Louis Virtel Yeah. Right. Doesn’t get odder.


Ira Madison III People always forget that he is part of the Coppola family.


Louis Virtel Right? Yeah. Sofia Coppola, another great answer.


Ira Madison III I actually want a. I would love a Succession style drama or a House of Gucci, actually, about House of Coppola.


Louis Virtel Oh. I mean, first of all, I feel like Francis Ford Coppola is prone to running with huge ideas that he loses control of quickly. So you could probably just say this to him and he’ll do something that he spends $250 million of his own money on.


Ira Madison III Yeah, we know. The real reason Nathalie Emmanuel couldn’t talk about Megalopolis the other week is because she couldn’t understand the script.


Louis Virtel Yeah, lots of TBD in that script.


Ira Madison III All right. When we’re back. Keep It. And we’re back with our favorite segment of the episode. It is Keep It, Louis. What’s yours?


Louis Virtel Okay. Well, this is going to be a controversial one, but my Keep It goes to House of the Dragon and I’ll tell you why. One, I attempted to watch it. And as you know, it’s simply not my thing. I don’t. Yeah. Can you believe everybody liked it? So I was like, I’m going to go and try it. I think it actually has nothing to do with the quality of the show. It’s just I’m not built to watch people have these scenes over chalices with each other. I just don’t care. I can’t do it. But also, just a couple of things. The wig work is distracting. I have a hard time with the wigs.


Ira Madison III It’s pretty bad. Yeah. On Matt Smith?


Louis Virtel Yeah, and I relate to Matt Smith. I also have deep set eyes and a large nose, I believe sis we’re in this together. So but all the hair in this, I feel every man in this movie, it looks like Annie Leibovitz’ stunt double. And I. I can’t get them apart. And also, of course, the names are all similar. The names all look like, oh, this scrabble rack sucks, you know, chargrilled, you know, whatever. I can’t I’m bad with names like that. And also in literature, I’m like that. You know, if I’m reading, you know, like something like Anna Karenina, what everybody has like a very similar name and that’s of another tongue. That’s tough for me. But mostly what I resent about this has nothing to do with the quality of the show. 10 million people watched it on its first week, which makes it the biggest debut for an HBO show ever and ever. I know even more so than Dahl and M. I couldn’t believe it. But it just means not only we’re going to get a ton more of this show, we’re definitely going to get like 80 spin offs. So I mostly resent that I can just tell the entire HBO universe is going to be taken over by this. And good people love this. And I think also in this sort of geekdom type show, it’s probably the best we’ve ever had on television. You know, I mean, even running into movie is a little bit like bumps up against Lord of the Rings in terms of like quality of what you’re seeing. So I can’t be mad at that. I’m just mad at knowing, oh, my God, this is only the beginning. And like Star Wars, it’s going to be this ever expanding, you know, universe of spinoffs and reboots and prequels and redos for the rest of time. So I’m simply bracing myself for more Game of Thrones content for the next 70 years.


Ira Madison III I’m imagining you in the eighties being like Dynasty, Dallas, Falcon Crest. Enough. Can’t we get more shows like China Beach?


Louis Virtel Well, China Beach would be late in the eighties, so yeah, but no. Dana Delany Culture is important. In fact, follow Dana Delaney on Twitter. She does a really good job and loves old movies. But you’re right, I don’t. I can’t imagine myself getting sick of Dynasty, though.


Ira Madison III That’s fair. If, you know, if I Keep It existed in the eighties, we’d be talking about Dynasty every week.


Louis Virtel Right now there’d be a segment on the show called you know. Diane Carroll tells us to Keep It? Yes. Right.


Ira Madison III Of I would say that I enjoy House of the Dragon. I actually thought it was pretty good. And I would describe this show, though, as. And I would always describe a lot of Game of Thrones with the subtitle of Game of Thrones episodes that are like really, really good. And then for the most part, you put it on, you watch it. You don’t really retain any of the information week to week, but you do look up every now and again and you’re like, Okay, that’s cool. Someone’s baby was just ripped out of their stomach by C section.


Louis Virtel Right? Right. It does feel also like a series where they just take huge blocks to do exposition and then move into the thing you really want to see. So you’re sort of anticipating those moments in between. Lots of somber descriptions. But honestly, I mean, like a lot of Game of Thrones feel similar in tenor and feel to a movie like this is just what’s coming to mind, Elizabeth You know, so I’m not saying there’s not potential for good kind of classic drama. And there it’s just the minute a dragon appears on the screen, I’m out. I just I don’t want to see the monsters. I don’t believe in them.


Ira Madison III Feel of an Elizabeth. But it’s written more like Excalibur.


Louis Virtel Yes. What’s another thing, Matt Smith on this show? Does he not look exactly like fucking Highlander? Did no one think like here? Here he is. Christopher Lambert, reborn not to denigrate his fine work in the Mortal Kombat films.


Ira Madison III Yeah. I mean, I think it’s the Legolas wig that’s on his head. It’s. It’s it’s giving a bit much. But whatever. I’m happy to have my dragons back and I’m in an abusive relationship with HBO because I swore off this fucking show after last season of the Game of Thrones. And here I am looking like a dumb ass.


Louis Virtel Yep. Clown emoji. Insert your own people. Ira, what is your Keep It this week?


Ira Madison III My Keep It this week goes to Harry Styles.


Louis Virtel Oh. He has been around and discussing a lot of things relevant to us as queer people.


Ira Madison III Yes. Irrelevant to him as a. A CIA agent who is unwilling to disclose anything about himself but has a lot of opinions about things that really aren’t his business.


Louis Virtel It  is giving Jodie Foster’s Golden Globes speech. I am so proud to be in front of you and having been through a journey. Yeah.


Ira Madison III I think the first of all, Harry Styles was in an interview where he discussed his new movie, My Policemen.


Louis Virtel Which looks really good.


Ira Madison III Yeah, like, look, I’m looking forward to seeing it, but. He describes how gay sex in films is really just a lot of guys going at it and. In this film, it’s more tender lovemaking between two men. And I want to know, first of all, like, are you watching Shaun Cody? Like


Louis Virtel What movie was he talking about?  Yeah. I can’t think of one movie he could be talking about.


Ira Madison III Not even Call Me by Your Name, which should have been like one of those films like It Takes, you feel like a lady in waiting, waiting for the sex to happen in that film.


Louis Virtel Right. No Moonlight.


Ira Madison III And you don’t even get to see it


Louis Virtel They pan away from it. Yeah. In Moonlight, they pan away from it. I mean, Brokeback Mountain has one moment of, you know, famously kind of gritty sex, but that is very short lived. And also, I can’t really think of other movies like God’s Own Country. I don’t know.


Ira Madison III I mean, I think that, first of all, Harry Styles just be talking or.


Louis Virtel Sure.


Ira Madison III He loves to talk. He loves he loves to have he just loves to just be in an interview saying shit, which is funny in its own way. But also, here’s the thing. I don’t care if Harry is gay. I don’t care if he’s straight. I don’t care if he’s bi. I don’t care if he is, you know? Nick Jonas on gay magazine covers in 2015. Okay. Which is its own sexuality.


Louis Virtel Right.


Ira Madison III But if you’re going to do this all, like, I don’t want to talk about my sexuality and I don’t want to disclose it, then stop having an opinion on gay film. It’s a very it’s weird behavior.


Louis Virtel I also just think like he’s trying to speak authoritatively about something while speaking in vagaries. And it’s just you’re not saying anything. It’s a lot of nothing.


Ira Madison III Yeah. Also Keep It to Rolling Stone UK for anointing him the new king of Pop.


Louis Virtel That is so funny.


Ira Madison III On their cover, which is.


Louis Virtel Sorry he has a couple of singles.


Ira Madison III And it’s not even me with, you know, this veneration for Michael Jackson either. It’s one, a couple of singles. Two, I’ve seen him live and he’s not doing what any of the pop girls are doing. Okay. Like King of Pop denotes that you would be on par with Queens of Pop, you know, with. He’s not giving Beyoncé. He’s not giving Madonna on stage. He’s not giving Janet. But he’s. He’s running around in brightly colored pantsuits. And that’s about it. He’s Kamala Harris.


Louis Virtel Yeah, right. Oh. I was going to go the pounds down route, but Kamala Harris is actually a lot funnier. I must say about Madonna quickly, did you know that the rumored name of her biopic is Little Little Sparrow, which you can’t just take Edith Piaf’s name. What? Everybody’s confused about their nicknames today.


Ira Madison III There was a tweet where someone said that Harry Styles has been talked up by white people, like he’s basically James Brown.


Louis Virtel Right. And he is mostly, you know, somebody at the thrift shop who looks amazing.


Ira Madison III He’s a he’s a good singer, but he’s about as a good singer as everyone else in the game right now. He’s not like, I’m not even listening to Harry Styles being like this, like the vocals, like this is this is giving me something. It’s just, it’s just pop music.


Louis Virtel Yeah. As It Was, a pleasurable single. And by the way, still in the top five. I meant to say this when you brought up Nicki Minaj being number one, I guess just the billboard chart doesn’t move anymore. Like Kate Bush is still in the top five. God loved the woman. We want this for Kate Bush. But and something else is still in the top five that’s been around for ever and ever. Never. Lizzo, About Damn Time. I remember that. I remember when About Damn Time was May. You know.


Ira Madison III It’s about damn time for it to fall off the charts.


Louis Virtel I’m about ready.


Ira Madison III I don’t understand how a fucking billboard works at all, to be honest. Because I feel like there’s the streaming numbers and then there’s the radio numbers and like, are the radio the radio numbers catching up to the initial streams? It’s who is still listening to the song constantly.


Louis Virtel Right. No. Yeah. What math is involved in keeping these songs where they are moving them around? Or why is now Mariah now always at the top of the charts and Christmas, even though, of course she is, because that’s when people will be consuming that. So why wasn’t that always the case? I need to stop this.


Ira Madison III Anyway, I have one more surprise Keep It.


Louis Virtel Oh.


Ira Madison III Which goes to unfortunately, I hate to do this as Leo season has just ended and we’re under attack by Virgos, but I must attack to Leo’s.


Louis Virtel Oh, God.


Ira Madison III Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez.


Louis Virtel Oh, no. Two of our most productive lives.


Ira Madison III Do you know that they got married on a plantation this weekend?


Louis Virtel No, not the Blake Lively situation.


Ira Madison III Which is a replica of a plantation that his ancestors, his like family once owned.


Louis Virtel His own family. So,.


Ira Madison III Yes.


Louis Virtel So it’s a it’s a historical celebration of what I’m going to assume is the worst part of his family history.


Ira Madison III Listen I find it extra wild because Henry Louis Gates Jr had that show Finding Your Roots on PBS, if you recall. Yes. And do you also recall that Ben Affleck was in the second season of that show and the episode was pulled because what they did a search of Ben Affleck’s roots. They found out that his family owned slaves and he did not want that to be on TV.


Louis Virtel But what he was actually doing, he’s like. This would be a pretty baller wedding location. He’s like, I got to save this.


Ira Madison III He got it pulled from TV and then apologized for it later. And then, what, like lee than ten years later was like, let’s let’s get married on a plantation. Who cares?


Louis Virtel Also, that’s such a weird instinct. Like it would have been, I don’t know, valuable in a way to be like, well, my own history contains this. You know, no one would be like, I blame you, Ben Affleck, for hundreds of years of degradation.


Ira Madison III Listen, if Jesse on Saved by the Bell can confront the fact that her family used to own Lisa Turtles. I think that Ben Affleck.


Louis Virtel I didn’t realize they broke it down that much.


Ira Madison III I’m like truly would try to remember that ever said I think was Jesse try to do things like I bought you a Coca-Cola, Lisa.


Louis Virtel Oh, my God.


Ira Madison III I’m paying for your lunch.


Louis Virtel Wow. You rarely get episodes of TV about reparations.


Ira Madison III And Lisa was the richest one on the show.


Louis Virtel Right. But that that does make it kind of funnier. Okay. It’s brilliant.


Ira Madison III Yeah. Yeah. Saved By the Bell, secretly brilliant.


Louis Virtel I assure you, it’s not the original. Well you watch it, and it was like, what was wrong with me?


Ira Madison III All right, well, that’s our show.


Louis Virtel Thank God.


Ira Madison III So shout out to John Boyega and we’ll see you next week.


Ira Madison III Keep It is a Crooked Media production. Our senior producer is Kendra James. Our producer is Chris Lord. Our executive producer is Ira Madison III.


Louis Virtel And Louis Virtel.


Ira Madison III Our editor is Charlotte Landes and Kyle Seglin is our sound engineer.


Louis Virtel Thank you to our digital team, Matt DeGroot and Nar Melkonian and Delon Villanueva for production support every week.