-Thank you very much. Thank you for having me again.
-We’re so, so happy to have you back in New York City.
-Yeah. -So thrilled. -That’s very nice of you.
Thank you very much. -And you — This is nice
to have you here. You’re obviously working.
That’s why you’re in New York. But you get to do Thanksgiving
in New York. -Yes. Yeah, yeah. My girlfriend and I are hosting
for the first time. -Is that something you’ve done
before? No, first time. -No, I’ve never done that
before. So, yeah, I thought
I’m just gonna make myself — you know, I can’t cook. So I’m gonna just make myself
as useful as humanly possible. I thought I was gonna be doing
some maybe chopping of things. I found out yesterday I’m not
gonna be trusted with chopping. -Wow. -That’s probably
a good decision. -‘Cause chopping is
the lowest as far as — -No, no, no.
Stirring is the lowest. -Stirring is — You’re right.
Stirring is lower. -Stirring is lower. -So are they gonna have you
doing a little stirring? -I’m gonna be stirring. I’m gonna be maybe
crushing things. -Oh, that’s good.
-If that’s required, yeah. -And how many people
are you hosting? -Nine.
-Okay. -Some families will laugh at
that paltry amount of people. But for me, that’s more people then I’ve, you know,
had in one group. Outside of this kind of room
in a long time. -Turkey though? -Yup.
-Okay. -Turkey and then
a bunch of sides. And, yes, we’ve got
a vegetarian. So we sorted them out.
They’ve got an option. I’ve got a friend
who’s allergic to nuts. They’re sorted. So, yeah, I’ve really just —
it’s been a week of finding out everybody’s dietary
restrictions. [ Laughter ] -Yeah, that is the new problem
in this day and age. -Yes.
-Raises the level of difficulty. -Will you watch —
we’ve talked before. -Football. Yeah, yeah, yeah. -You became a football fan,
an American football fan. Will you be watching? -Absolutely, yeah.
-Okay. -That’s — that will be the,
sort of, soundtrack of the day. And my girlfriend’s
from Michigan. So we’ll be — there’s always
a Lions game on Thanksgiving. -Oh, that’s good. -With the misery or joy
that that entails. -Yeah, more often than not,
misery, yeah. -It has been.
-Yeah. -But, you know, it’s — I feel
like there’s a certain — heartbreak is part of
being a Giants fan. -Oh, okay. -In a way that is
sort of about a lot — you know, being an English
football fan is also — sort of in some way — well, growing up was,
you know, mixed in with a lot of heartbreak
and missed penalties. -Yeah.
-Yeah. -And was the World Cup
exciting for you? I know in the end
it ended in tears. -No, but that’s the furthest
they’ve gone in my lifetime. That was amazing.
[ Laughter ] Don’t laugh at that. Just ’cause you’re America
and you win stuff all the time. [ Laughter ] I remember the first time I —
We were in Germany. The date that everyone in
England grows up knowing is 1966 is the year England
won the World Cup. And that’s engrained
in all of us. And I remember the first time
I went to Germany and realized no one
there has any idea that’s what happened that year
or in any other country. It’s not famous. It’s just that
we really hang on to that. I was like, “Oh, no,
you’ve won it so many times, you don’t hang on
to the one year that you won it 50 years ago.” -Yeah. But it gets sadder with
every year that passes ’cause the thing that you’re
proud of gets a year older. -Further and further away, yeah. But I was in Germany this year
for the World Cup, which was great,
’cause, you know, they got knocked out
kind of early and we did really well.
-There you go. -For once.
-There you go. That’s something
to hang your hat on. So, this show, this is a play
where you play a fact checker. -Yes. -And you’re dealing with
a reporter who maybe doesn’t have the same love of
facts that your character does. -I should say he’s not so much
a reporter as he’s an author. He’s written, kind of, an essay. And he deals in,
sort of — it’s — it is about fact checking,
but it’s — the thing that you can’t — we’re not a particularly
political play where you can’t say the word
“fact” at the moment without it kind of becoming
a political statement. And this is —
and that is obviously — we’re very topical in that way. But we’re not dealing with Trump
and that stuff and fake news. We don’t, kind of,
get into all that. But it’s more about, kind of,
a debate about artistic license and how far you can push
something as a writer. But it — all that other stuff
is encompassed as well. And it’s 85 minutes long
and really funny. So, yeah, that’s me selling it
to you. -That’s a good sell.
[ Cheers and applause ] You went — You actually went and worked
a job as a fact checker at “New Yorker” —
at “The New Yorker.” -Yeah, they let me —
they very, very kindly — “The New Yorker” invited me
to spend a day with their — or a few hours with their
fact-checking department. And they were —
who were all amazing and just these super bright,
young people who, you know, I’m very grateful for existing. And we — yeah, and they —
I didn’t really take it in when they said
“Oh, you’re gonna come and we’ll make you
fact-check an article.” I was like, “Okay, cool.
Yeah, I’ll come and see stuff. What’s going on?” And then I went
and they were like, “No, you’re gonna get on
the phone to somebody and actually fact-check
this restaurant review.” And I suddenly — I did. I got way more nervous about
that than I do about doing the play
every night or anything. Just because suddenly
you’re on the phone with somebody who expects — He knows he’s getting a call
from “The New Yorker.” He doesn’t know it’s an actor playing around
at being a fact checker. -Right.
[ Laughter ] -He’s expecting
a level of professionalism that I didn’t know
if I had in me. So, yeah. -How do you fact-check
a restaurant review? Do you call up and say,
“Was the soup cold?” -Yeah.
-You do? -You literally —
you track every — That’s when I started
underlining the article, which is what you do when you
start checking something, and underline everything
you think is a fact. I was like, “Oh, every — every
ingredient counts as a fact.” So I guess
I got to ask him about, “Do you put
all these things in?” And it was — you know, my —
my big moment was finding out that something was not, in fact,
seasoned with Old Bay. It was seasoned with
adobe and chili. -Wow!
-Yeah. And that was — that was —
and but, you know — you don’t know how much
satisfaction I got from then seeing that restaurant review
with the correct information. -Yeah. -Knowing that I had been
a part of that. -That is thri– I mean, that’s a fact checker’s
dream is to catch one. -Oh, God.
-Yeah. I mean, I would have gotten off
the phone. And even though
it doesn’t make sense, I would have screamed,
“Stop the presses.” [ Laughter ] -Quickly!
We can’t run it like this! But, yeah, no — and it was —
it’s really like — I don’t know. There was something really
inspirational about going into “The New Yorker”
and seeing how it’s all done. And also, I did almost feel like
saying at the end, “You know, if you’ve ever got
any really low-stakes articles that you need checking,
I’m happy to do that.” The guy I had to call
was a very, very nice chef who made my job very easy. I wouldn’t like to be doing that
job if I did have to call, you know, Sarah Sanders
or somebody who does not want
to hear from you. -Yeah, that’s true. She might not want to hear
from anybody, though. [ Laughter ] There are certain people
that just don’t like it when the phone rings.
-Yeah, yeah. -Yeah.
-That’s fair enough. -And a wonderful cast,
obviously. Cherry Jones
and Bobby Cannavale, which all should be noted.