Earlier this week, GQ posted a big profile I did of the Entourage cast for their upcoming movie. As always, there was plenty of juicy shit that couldn’t make its way into the final piece, like Jeremy Piven’s thoughts on In-N-Out Burger, which are very important for you to know about. You can read many of those outtakes over at GQ.com. But here are a few more, just for shits and giggles.
* As I noted in the original article, my plan going in was to trail the cast around Austin all day in hopes of being a lackey. A stooge. A flunky. A Turtle. Entourage’s entourage. But that didn’t really work, because everything the guys needed was essentially already taken care of. And besides, any sane person knows that having and maintaining an entourage is a complete pain in the ass. Much better to just do the shit yourself. At one point during the GQ photo shoot, Kevin Connolly got all the guys to sign a DVD box set of the show to give to charity, and he needed the ink to dry. So he handed it to a Warner Bros. rep while he got his picture taken. I asked to hold the box. I wanted to be the box boy.
“Okay,” the rep said, “but if you smear it, he’s not gonna do any more press.” (It was an idle threat. Kevin was still totally gonna do all the press.)
So I took the box and held it upside-down. Immediately, the discs began to slip out, but I recovered in time. Everyone saw me fuck up, but no matter. I held the box high in the air. I was prepared to plant that box on the surface of the sun if I could get the silver ink to dry in a timely manner. That’s just how seriously I took my bitch duties.
“If you put it down,” the rep told me, totally seriously, “put it into my hands.” She was nervous. I don’t blame her. She had entrusted this box to an unproven box holder.
“Can I have it back now?” she asked me.
“Do I have to give it back?”
She took the box back and cradled it like a baby.
* Later on, I volunteered to get the boys lunch. And not just any lunch, but lunch from Franklin BBQ, one of the best BBQ joints in America. I wanted to up my degree of toadying difficulty.
“They will have eaten,” another rep told me. “It’s not necessary.”
Yes, I explained to her, but I was taking INITIATIVE.
“Right. Well, they didn’t ask for it, so ….”
Dessert! No one said shit about dessert. That wasn’t infringing on any personal boundaries. So I headed over to Franklin BBQ anyway, because they sell very small pies that are very delicious.
I walked up to the front door of the restaurant, which turned out to be closed for a private event. A man in red shirt stood guard by the door.
“Are you here for the Verizon event?” he asked me. “We’re normally closed on Mondays.”
“Oh, can I just get pie?” I asked.
“I’m actually picking up food for the cast of a movie,” I told him in hushed tones.
“It’s actually for Entourage, if you must know.”
“Do you know of any other places that sell very small pies?”
“I’m sorry. I’m not from here.”
Shit. I fled the restaurant and doubled back across town. I tried to get cookies for the guys instead, but the only joint I could find had big, shithead cookies. Cookies as big as dinner plates. Not appropriate cookies. There was also a hot sauce emporium on Sixth Street that sold nothing but hot sauce, which is a lot of hot sauce. I ran in and grabbed six bottles of green cactus sauce—hot enough to be manly, but not scorching.
“I’m actually giving this to the cast of Entourage!” I told the woman behind the counter.
“Is Entourage still happening?” she asked.
* More from director Doug Ellin! On branding: “The president of Maserati was like, ‘You really made the Quattroporte [luxury coupe]. People wanted this car because it was on the show.’ It was like, Wow.”
* On the show’s treatment of women: “They [the characters] are not assholes. They’re not misogynistic. They’re pretty nice—much nicer to women than my real-life friends.”
* On beefing online: “You should see the shit they say about me. It’s sick. I have a hard time with it. I’ve learned to control myself, but I’ve gotten in so many fights on social media, and people are like, ‘What’s wrong with you? You don’t even know who you’re talking to.’ As they said in War of the Roses, there are only degrees of losing, and fighting with a random stranger on Instagram—you’ve got a movie, it opens, you spend two years on it, it doesn’t work, people torture you.”
* On the L.A. private-school boondoggle: “It’s just brutal. I’m in this system I never thought I’d be in. I gotta donate money, I gotta fuckin’ ... I spend more time on the school shit than with Entourage. Can we get this? Can we get that? I fuckin’ hate the whole system, because it’s disgusting.”
* On being a New Yorker who lives in L.A.: “When I hear (my kids), when we’re on vacation and people say, ‘Where you from?’ and they say, ‘Beverly Hills,’ I literally, like, I cringe. I’ve been in L.A. 24 years. That’s 28 years I’ve been gone, but when someone’s like, ‘Where you from?’ I’m like, ‘New York.’ I never, ever say L.A.”
* So why not go back to New York? “I hate the weather now. I don’t know how I grew up like that, and that’s the one thing. I’m like, ‘I became a fuckin’ pussy.’ I’m still in touch with legitimately 30 people from high school, and we’re on a group text, talking, and every one of ‘em is just like, ‘We gotta get out of here. We can’t take it anymore.’ They’re miserable.”
* On Bad Lieutenant: “I saw Bad Lieutenant with my mom, who is very conservative.”
* On making a show for Mike Tyson: “I did a show—it’s crazy to look at now—but I came up with the idea for Mike Tyson to do this show at HBO, and we shot the pilot. It’s called The Brick, and it’s a drama set in Newark, loosely based on Mike’s life, similar to Mark Wahlberg’s, and John Ridley wrote the script. He just won a fuckin’ Oscar. And John Boyega, who’s the star of Star Wars, was my star. But Spike Lee directed it. It didn’t go forward. It’ll sit on a shelf and never be seen.”
(I want to see this show.)
* On using his marriage counseling as fodder for the show (Ellin is divorced and recently got engaged to someone else): “The therapy scenes, I didn’t even have to write those. I just would sit in therapy like (makes writing motions), ‘Keep going, keep going,’ you know?”
* On writing: “I hate writing. Hate it. Like, I’m so over it ... I’m not the kind of guy who likes to sit alone in a room. You’re in your brain, and it’s like, you know: It hurts. Let me go for lunch, let me check some Internet porn, stocks that I don’t own; let me see what I could have been rich at if I’d invested properly. I waste a lot of time, unfortunately.”
* On agents: “I fucking hate agents. They’re people who wanna live off other people’s talents.”
* For his next project, Ellin is making an HBO biopic about Harriet Tubman. I feel like there won’t be as much gratuitous nudity in that one.
* When they shot the pilot for Entourage way back when, Jerry Ferrara was sick with the stomach flu. “We had this pool scene,” Kevin Dillon said, “and they forgot to heat up the pool. It was freezing. He was hypothermic; he was, like, shaking in the pool.
“I was green,” Ferrara says.
“He had to make out with that girl.”
“I had to kiss a girl in a freezing-cold pool.”
“That poor girl. We all deserved hazard pay. That pool was so freezing cold.”
“And they ran out of towels.”
* Kevin Dillon’s neck is all fucked up from an accident he suffered on the set of A Midnight Clear three decades ago. As a result, he wears hologram bracelets on both of his wrists at all times. And he says they work! “They’re holograms. They’ve got this little hologram in there, and somehow it’s supposed to line up your nerves. I swear by ‘em. I don’t know if it’s a placebo or what. If it’s a placebo, it works, right? As long as you believe in it. And I believe in it.”
* Important nugget of wisdom from Jerry Ferrara: “Bacon saved Brussels sprouts. Every man has Brussels sprouts now with bacon in it, and everyone loves to order that shit. Bacon saved Brussels sprouts.” He is not wrong.
* One publicist I spoke to said one of her colleagues went deaf from popping their ears in an airplane. “You have to be traveling with congestion or something,” she told me. Is that REALLY possible? I’m scared shitless now.
* Piven: “I don’t get In-N-Out like everybody else does.” It’s the no-bacon policy, man. They gotta offer bacon.
* By the way, apart from the nudity, Piven is the best thing in the movie. It’s not even close.
Photo courtesy of Danielle Levitt/GQ.