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Dane Cook brings his comedy to Atlantic City and talks to Philly2Philly.com

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This weekend, funnyman Dane Cook is scheduled to bring his comedy to the Trump Taj Mahal Casino in Atlantic City. Cook has been making audiences laugh for two decades with his stand-up comedy, tours, cd’s, dvd’s, television shows and movie roles. Philly2Philly caught up with the 38 year-old, who says he has learned a lot over the years through his many experiences. Cook also reveals some details about his upcoming projects, even setting his sights on the theater.

Philly2Philly: What can fans expect during your show at the Trump Taj Mahal Casino this weekend?Comedian Dane Cook

Dane Cook: First of all, they can expect that I will be there, it’s not going to be a hologram. I will not have an impersonator on my behalf, so the good news is I am there in the flesh just to be there and make sure to keep everything above board. I was just speaking to somebody saying that a lot of my comedy right now is really coming from a new cool perspective. If you follow my career until last year( the ‘Isolated Incident’ Tour), a lot of that material came out of darker, happenings in my life.

I was definitely dealing with some of the hardest, most emotionally challenging things—losing my parents to cancer, some of the things that were happening personally, financially in regards to my business. I was really pushing a lot in the direction of release, so it was almost like therapy-comedy and darker in tone where as now, I’m past that in my life. I’m feeling really great definitely feeling just a new perspective. Brand new underwear, which is always important. When you buy a brand new pair of underwear, it just feels great. When you put on a brand new pair of underwear they feel fresh, they feel nice and tight, you feel like a superhero (laughs). The new material is definitely coming from a lighter place, but with perspective. I’m still maturing in my comedy and the way that I bring that routine to people, but definitely getting back to some of the earlier, sillier observational stuff. It’s a nice mash-up.

P2P: A lot of artists say they heal from their work and then something even better can come out of it.

DC: I did a lot of healing. One thing I learned doing that tour and sharing some of those really intimate moments was I get emails from all walks of life saying: ‘I feel you man, I was there, I’m dealing with it. Something like that is happening to me right now.’ So it was almost like a collective sharing with the fans where we’re all laughing at ourselves and some of the pain—it was like laughing at the pain, and now I’m past the pain and it’s all about lightness now. It’s really all about getting back to the origin of what my stand up was- which is get in there, be light, and have a great time. There’s still a great, new, interesting perspective as an adult, but I’ve never lost my youthful enthusiasm. A lot more of that will come into this hour that you will see in the show.

P2P: Who were some of your influences to become a stand-up comedian?

DC: I’m sure people have heard me mention Steve Martin many times. He definitely influenced me. Not only by the way he reached this massive impact culturally on the stand-up comedy of his generation and other generations that were interested in what he was bringing to the table, but I just appreciated the way he carried himself and the way he also brought his fans into different forms of media, which is what I’ve done as well. I’ve done some films, I’ve done TV, music, radio—you name it. It’s like I love broadcasting, Internet, anything that I can do to find a way to create something for me and entertain you is what I’m all about. There is no other course of action for me, it’s what makes me happy. I know it’s definitely what makes the fans happy so I look at the guys that broke things open and took their comedy and the art form of comedy to respectable new levels.

P2P: Whether you’re in a film, on TV or on the stage, do you have a preference of one over the other?

DC: I think anything that I can do involving women’s gymnastics is the niche for me (laughs). If I could get into some kind of Olympic gymnastic course of events (laughs). No, I don’t have a favorite because I think all of them tend to excite me in very different ways. In fact, I’ve been talking recently with some people about doing some theater. I was approached by a director that I just have unbelievable amount of respect for and he’s a great playwright, but I don’t want to jinx anything because nothing is set in stone yet. However, if this comes through I’ll be doing a lot more theater coming up. It’s a great way to now tell a story in front of my audience with an ensemble without just the world of pantomime, but with sets and in a beautiful theater somewhere. So, it’s all part of the journey and I’m definitely looking forward to taking on whatever challenge I can meet.

P2P: What are some of your upcoming projects?

DC: I’m going to be producing something coming up. I’m looking to direct my first feature film that may or may not even be a comedy. I found this really great dramatic piece. I’m also writing a dramatic piece, so anything that really gets my creative juices flowing. Those are always my favorite artists. People that don’t continue to play the same old song and dance over and over until you’re sick of it. I’d rather do something new and interesting and take a chance of either falling flat on my face, or make a new group of fans that have never seen me before. Hopefully, they stay interested and want to stay with me on the journey.

Dane Cook will be at Trump Taj Mahal July 2nd and July 3rd.

Contact Veronica Dudo at vdudo@philly2philly.com

Homepage photo: http://www.iwatchstuff.com/2007/05/30/dane-cook-bachelor.jpg