I did not become successful in my work through embracing or engaging in celebrity culture. I never signed away my privacy in exchange for success.

— Steve Coogan

The most famous Steve Coogan quotes to get the best of your day

If you are a great dramatic actor then you often don't know if people are enjoying your stuff at all because they are sitting there in silence. But with comedy it's a simple premise. If it's funny, people laugh. If it's not, they don't.

48

If you chase something too desperately, it eludes you.

41

When I was a student I was very, very ambitious, completely immersed in my comedy career. I never had that period of reckless hedonism that you should get out of your system in your youth.

16

I always find it easier to portray myself as being unlikeable and idiotic;

to actually play a character that is likeable and engages the audience is far more difficult. It's a more subtle kind of challenge.

14

If things don't come easy to you, you have to pull a rabbit out of a hat.

8

I don't apologize for my behavior anymore.

Whatever I do or don't do shouldn't matter. Moral certainty is dangerous. Moral certainty is what makes people go to war unnecessarily and illegally. Morality, as any halfway intelligent human being would tell you, is a very subjective thing.

8

I do like to make people cringe. That discomfort, tension, embarrassment, pain - all of those things interest me, and not through some sort of masochistic or sadistic impulse. It illuminates what being a human being is. It taps into what it is to be human more incisively than stuff that's just very pedestrian.

7

I think if you try to look for something to show off as an actor, vanity can get the better of you.

4

If you start to disrespect the character you're playing, or play it too much for laughs, that can work for a sketch, it will sell some gags, but it's all technique. It's like watching a juggler - you can be impressed by it, but it's not going to touch you in any way.

4

Two thousand years ago, the Holy family had a ramble from Nazareth to Bethlehem - in much the same way as I'm having a ramble from Norwich to Swaffham. Although I'm not comparing myself to Jesus - I don't want to get bogged down in that whole controversy again.

4

People regurgitate the same old cliches and it becomes like a photocopy of a photocopy of something that's vaguely interesting.

3

Going to a grammar school, you mixed with all sorts of different types and I used to listen to how they talked. When I did my imitations, I could sound like someone really rough, or I could sound like a cabinet minister.

3

About Steve Coogan

Quotes 117 sayings
Nationality British
Profession Comedian
Birthday October 16

I'm gonna hump ya. Like Deputy Dog... Would hump ya.

2

If it was just the potatoes that were affected, at the end of the day you will pay the price if you're a fussy eater.

2

I'm just attracted to playing people who are ostensible unlikable.

That's not to say that there's something in there that makes you care. It might be that you just find them so awful that you just can't stop watching, like a car crash.

2

Guide dogs for the blind. It's cruel really, isn't it? Getting a dog to lead a man round all day. Not fair on either of them.

1

If you're driving your car and someone winds the window down and gives you the finger and calls you an asshole, instead of giving him the finger back and calling him an asshole back, you just pull a funny face, and he doesn't know how to react to that, because you're using different rules.

1

A lot of people can be very scared about making themselves vulnerable and appearing uncool. I don't really give a damn; as long as it's funny, I'll do it [make fun of myself].

1

When I see friends from school I think they've all grown old and I've stayed the same.

1

Even if I screw up in my personal life, as long as I'm not destroying myself, I just think, "Okay, I screwed up." I'm not Mother Theresa.

0

I'm a huge fan of Jack Lemmon, he was someone who managed to tread that line between comedy and tragedy and sometimes give very big performances, but they were never over-demonstrative and they were never not based on a kind of real truthful human being.

0

If the person who can effectively sanction ill-conceived wars can play the electric guitar, which is a symbol of rebellion, then that whole worldview becomes confused.

0

I don't like comedy that I think is bad comedy, where people are trying to be sick for the sake of it, where there's no intellectual point behind it. I like stuff that's got an underlying point of view.

0

If you do something very successful, you will then be defined by it.

0

I'm not like a politician that goes around talking about family values.

And I can't get fired from being a funny person because I did something that most people are disapproving of. I think people are just obsessed with this morality that people perceive as being the right and wrong way of doing stuff.

0

The British often shy away from any cinematic interpretation of real sex.

They sometimes have what I call "subtle sex," which is really introspective and has soft music in the background. Either that or it's played for comedy. The British are kind of hung up about sex. They find it kind of titillating and they make jokes about it because they're nervous.

0

I think you need to have the guts to not use comedy.

Often, the people that work in comedy use a joke to avoid contemplation.

0

Knowing about comedy has helped me with the drama.

To see people laugh, it's like there are moments of catharsis in the middle of sadness.

0

When you see a crowd of people jumping up and down at a pop concert, all gloriously in the moment, I don't think you'll ever see a comedian there. They'll all be standing at the sides, looking at how it all fits together.

0

That's what gives people hope - that you can still love someone from afar and you can still have those feelings across an ocean.

0

Two fat ladies, 88! Not that you'd find these ladies at a bingo hall, of course.

.. they're altogether a higher class of fat lady.

0

The truth is somewhere in the middle of funny and serious.

0

You really have got lots of issues! Yeah, of 'What Car Magazine'!

0

Actually, bizarrely, in America, I get more appreciation from the odd, unusual stuff I've done, almost because I'm not, if you like, famous in America as I am in England.

0

I think it's always funny when you see kids do Shakespeare.

When I was at school, I was in Hamlet. I played Claudius, who's supposed to be a 60-year-old man, and I was like 18. It's inherently ridiculous seeing 18-year-old boys with gray beards. That's always funny.

0

I'm getting older , so I'm quieting down a bit.

0

I used to do stuff at college. I could do voices. I could make some people laugh. I wasn't the class clown, but I knew I had this skill.

0

I love Sherlock Holmes. I've got all his books, leather-bound. What I thought was great about Sherlock Holmes was that not only was he a supersleuth, he was also a hard worker. Not only did he go out and solve the crimes, he came home and wrote it all down. Fantastic. That's why I admire him.

0

I am not a politician going around bragging about family values or putting myself on some ridiculous virtuous pedestal. I write comedy. And I am an actor. I am not going to solve the nation's problems. I don't actually spend my life in the way the tabloids like to think I do. I actually spend 95 percent of it writing comedy. Sober. Well, nearly sober anyway.

0

All drama teachers are very effusive, very emotionally open, very big, and gesticulate a lot, and are very physical. Those people don't work in banks and they don't work for pharmaceutical companies. They teach drama, or they may be theatre directors. That's why I love people who are openly gay in theatre, because they have license to do what they like, and there's a kind of artistic liberal tolerance thing that goes on.

0

If you got the balls to follow something through, you can end up being the coolest, smartest guy in the room, because you've literally put your ass on the line.

0

Most of all I don't want to be bored.

That's why I'd rather do something that has some sort of ambition, that risks failing, rather than make safer, more comfortable choices.

0

I like the British public. There is something in this country called tall poppy syndrome. You're good but you're not that good, pal, OK? The natural state of our nation is slightly miserable, and probably the healthier for it. In America you don't get a key down the side of your Bentley.

0

Got my fungal foot powder? Ah, it's a lifesaver, you know.

I'd effectively be disabled if it weren't for these.

0

I'm not Mother Teresa. But I'm not Frank Bough, either. I am getting older and a bit more sensible. I'm not going to be popping up in dungeons every six months. If you catch me preaching fidelity while I am shagging chickens then throw the book at me. Otherwise, leave me alone.

0

Yeah, all drama teachers are very effusive, very demonstrative, very emotionally open, very big, and gesticulate a lot, and are very physical.

0

The important thing is not to be defined by what others think of you.

0

I'm really encouraged by Pope Francis, because I think his attitude is totally laudable.

0

It may seem like improv because it flows quite naturally, and a little bit of leeway for improvisation is good, but you have to be judicious with it. So it's good, but sometimes people deify it. You can't improvise your way out of a paper hat.

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