“Inside the Actors’ Studio” Questionnaire

James Lipton on WikipediaJust before my mom arrived, one of my fascinations became watching episodes of Bravo TV’s Inside the Actors Studio with James Lipton on YouTube.

[Loved when Will Ferrell did his Lipton impersonation on Saturday Night Live!]

I’m not a movie or theater buff by any means, but I find something so inspirational and moving in watching real actors–and by that I mean those who are truly artists–speaking about their craft, life, love and more.

Some of my favorite interviewees have been Robin Williams, Al Pacino, Jodie Foster, Kevin Spacey, Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Andy Garcia (of course!) . . . the list could go on and on.

Seriously, I recommend setting aside a few hours if you start exploring this YouTube option.

And P.S. if anyone is able to put more clips on, I’d love to see Morgan Freeman, Sydney Pollack, Carol Burnett, David Duchovny, Peter Falk, oh just all of them (see a list of all past guests here.)

The most well-known part of the program is probably the 10 questions that come from the French series Bouillon de Culture hosted by Bernard Pivot; Lipton asks these of each and every guest on Inside the Actors Studio and the answers are often witty, always intriguing.

Since I don’t anticipate appearing on that stage anytime soon, I thought it would be fun to do on the blog; here are the questions and my answers:

  1. What is your favorite word? Lollygagging
  2. What is your least favorite word? Hate
  3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Someone pursuing their passion
  4. What turns you off? Condescension
  5. What is your favorite curse word? Cazzo (Italian slang for penis but equivalent to our F-bomb in severity)
  6. What sound or noise do you love? Laughter, laughter and more laughter
  7. What sound or noise do you hate? Mosquitoes
  8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Pastry chef
  9. What profession would you not like to do? Trash collector
  10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? Your family is this-a-way

What are your answers?

Please feel free to play along in the comments or post to your own blog!

Hey, did I just create a meme?

Buon weekend and
check out Judith‘s sandwich buns for La Buona Cucina Americana!

20 Beans of Wisdom to ““Inside the Actors’ Studio” Questionnaire”
  1. 06.27.2008

    Oh! How I love the Actor’s Studio! I did not know it was available in Youtube, I will have to go check! You are the proud mama of a Meme, congratulations! I will answer it in a few days… I can relate to the “mosquitos” answer…. πŸ˜‰

    Beatriz’s last blog post..What is your line?

    Looking forward to your answers Beatriz πŸ™‚

  2. Okay I will have to do this someday. I know many people make fun of the show but depending on the guest, I too find it really interesting and inspirational. Two of my three bosses (not sure about the third) were on it and I found their appearances insightful even though I knew and worked with them. James Lipton is a very good interviewer and does his homework.

    nyc/caribbean ragazza’s last blog post..Flashback Friday – Milli Vanilli – “Girl You Know It’s True”

    I love Lipton’s questions too; so much of the credit for that show goes to him and his research staff. Can’t wait to read your answers!

  3. SabineM

    Oh I love that show as well. And fav interviews are the same as yours…
    Sorry haven’t been online much…been here in Switzerland this whole month of June just enjoying myself to pieces….
    I even met two fellow US Expat bloggers in Geneva AND went to Jess (in Search of Dessert)’s wedding (AMAZING And GORGEOUS wedding)….what a month. Back in DRY and HOT SOuthern California on July 1st… I am going to miss all the green and the cow bells

    SabineM’s last blog post..Out of office Reply….look below for newer posts

    Oh your last few weeks sound *so* lovely; much jealousy here πŸ˜‰

  4. Joanne at frutto della passione

    Fun, I’ll give this a try soon, maybe even today if I can get my act together (doubtful).
    Have a great weekend!

    Joanne at frutto della passione’s last blog post..SHF – Mmm…Canada Sweet edition Butter tarts

    Hope you have a great weekend too; looking forward to your answers πŸ™‚

  5. 06.27.2008

    Ugh, I can’t find a clip of it anywhere, and I only have it on audio – but David Cross does the best bit on Lipton.

    My old roommate in NYC met him at the store she worked at, and he is THE EXACT SAME WAY in person. They talked for an hour, and she said he made her feel like the most interesting, famous person alive.

    #5 Cazzo – best. word. ever. I just did a post about “s” words I love in Italian, but nothing holds a candle to cazzo. I use it way, way too often. It’s my gay mafia’s fault.

    Miss Expatria’s last blog post..Summer in the City: Montpellier, Languedoc, Provence

    Ooh another cazzo lover! Wait. That didn’t come out right πŸ˜‰

    I would *love* to meet Lipton in person; I had a feeling he’d be the same as you see him on the show…thanks for sharing the great news πŸ™‚

  6. 06.27.2008

    Love the meme. I will steal it for next week.

    running42k’s last blog post..On the cusp of a long weekend

    Can’t wait to read it πŸ™‚

  7. This is a great game you just started….and what perfect answers! I nodded “yep” quite a few times when I was reading yours.

    erin :: the olive notes’s last blog post..friends, family, food, & flowers

    Hope you’ll play along Erin πŸ™‚

  8. Loving Judith’s buns! Don’t know about the Actors Studio I’ll have to check it out. As always the would be meme makes fascinating reading. Glad your having fun with Mum. Ciao

    amanda@A Tuscan View…’s last blog post..Spellbound.

    I was going to make a comment about how so many have enjoyed Judith’s buns and so many more will in the future, but I’ll be nice πŸ˜‰

    Hope you enjoy the Actors Studio, Amanda. It seems like a comedy skit sometimes, but that’s part of its charm πŸ˜‰

  9. Roberto and I keep talking about doing a YouTube night – where we just hand out and check out what’s on there. Kinda like watching TV, yet more specialized! This will be a great place to start!

    Okay, I am feeling lazy today, and this is a good way to procrastinate at the moment – thanks Michelle, for the diversion! πŸ™‚

    1. What is your favorite word? Ethereal
    2. What is your least favorite word? Meal
    3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Love
    4. What turns you off? Entitlement
    5. What is your favorite curse word? “dra til helvete” – go to hell in Norwegian which is very severe.
    6. What sound or noise do you love? Thunderstorms
    7. What sound or noise do you hate? Motorcycles that are really loud
    8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Teacher
    9. What profession would you not like to do? Bathroom cleaner at a highway rest stop
    10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?
    We have to send you back

    JennDZ_The LeftoverQueen’s last blog post..Finest Foodies Friday – June 27, 2008

    Yeah! Love these answers Jenn! Entitlement is a turn-off of mine as well….

    Thanks for playing πŸ™‚

  10. 06.28.2008

    Ooooo… I think you may have! Great ideas both from the meme and the youtube stuff.

    jen of a2eatwrite’s last blog post..What’s Cooking Wednesday – Brunch with Anno and Mint Pesto

    Thanks Jen πŸ™‚ Hope you’ll play!

  11. 06.29.2008

    Great questions and great answers sognatrice. I also hate the sound of mosquitos (way too many african camping trips as a child).

    african vanielje’s last blog post..Pain de Compagne & a sourdough starter

    There’s a commercial here now that has a mosquito buzzing through most of it…gaaaaaaah!

  12. 06.29.2008

    Hi Michelle! I am on my way over to youtube to watch some of the interviews you linked to – I don’t think I’ve ever seen the show. That’s about to change!

    Love the questions and I too will borrow it for next week! K? πŸ™‚

    Dory’s last blog post..Weird little noises….

    Sounds great to me Dory πŸ™‚

  13. Maryann

    Love that show and it was fun to read your answers. πŸ™‚

    Maryann’s last blog post..Sunka

    Thanks Maryann! Good to see you πŸ™‚

  14. 06.29.2008

    What is your favorite word? Peaches
    What is your least favorite word? Whisper
    What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Landscapes
    What turns you off? Rudeness
    What is your favorite curse word? Fuck!
    What sound or noise do you love? Women singing
    What sound or noise do you hate? Jack Hammers
    What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Sculptor
    What profession would you not like to do? Stock Market
    If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? Would you like to see the wine list?

    JimD’s last blog post..Sunday Morning Music

    Love your answers JimD! Peaches! Fabulous! And sculptor…oh that would be so wonderful…I’ll take any kind of artist (assuming I’d be given a fabulous talent for it as well) πŸ˜‰

  15. 06.30.2008

    Great! I played on my blog today, too!

    Geggie’s last blog post..Ten Questions

    Woohoo! I’ll be over shortly πŸ™‚

  16. 06.30.2008

    OMG, I love that show! And what a great idea for a post!!
    Yeah, the Italian C-word is the best, esp. when driving in rush hour. It’s more satisfying than swearing in English sometimes.

    milanesemasala’s last blog post..Euro 2008 – Iker vs Jens: the sexy showdown

    I *definitely* enjoy swearing in Italian more. Wonder what that’s about πŸ˜‰

  17. 06.30.2008

    I think you did just create a meme and I think I’ll have to do it soon because it is scrumtrulescent! πŸ™‚
    Loved reading your answers!

    DebR’s last blog post..Random Items from the Junk Drawer of my Mind #92

    Hey, I think you created a word…hope you play along πŸ™‚

  18. 06.30.2008

    Fun post. Love the show. They just replayed the George Carlin episode as a tribute. Funny and sad at the same time πŸ™

    My MΓ©lange’s last blog post..A Sunday ApΓ©ritif

    Love George Carlin; I’ll have to look for that one on YouTube.

  19. 07.01.2008

    You did just invent a meme! Thanks for the recommendation. I hadn’t seen this show before.

    Diane Mandy’s last blog post..A Very Martini Toast: Arjewtino

    I hope you enjoy it Diane πŸ™‚

  20. 07.02.2008

    I’ve always loved these questions. Great idea for a post and a meme! I’m going to have do a post too when I get a chance. I love your answers!

    Anali’s last blog post..Pizza Recipe Coming Up …

    Looking forward to your answers Anali πŸ™‚

Michelle KaminskyMichelle Kaminsky is an American attorney-turned-freelance writer who lived in her family's ancestral village in Calabria, Italy for 15 years. This blog is now archived. 

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Homemade apple butter
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Pasta with snails alla calabrese
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