The Schmear Chronicles


Judd Apatow: The Jew Crush

This Jewish funny man tugs at our heartstrings

Aside from pizza and puppies, comedy is the other number one way to our hearts. And few do comedy better than producer, writer, director, actor and comedian, Judd Apatow. Apatow, 49, has already had quite a prolific career. Born in Flushing, Queens, the award-winning MOT infuses much of his humor with Jewish, New York City sensibilities (not quite on the neurotic levels of Woody Allen perhaps), but the angsty, self-deprecating brand of funny is as evident as Jonah Hill’s Jew-fro in “Suberbad.” Apataow was raised in Syosset by his Jewish parents Tami and Maury, and from a young age he looked up to the comedy greats including legendary Jewish comedic quintet, the Marx Brothers. On Wednesday, Random House announced that Apatow is working on his new book “Sicker in the Head,” (a sequel to his best-selling “Sick in the Head”), containing interviews with famous comedians and actors.  

Seven reasons we have a Jew crush on Judd Apatow:

1. Movie master. Basically if you went to see a comedy in the past 10 year, it was an Apatow. In addition to directing box office hits. “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” “Knocked Up,” “Funny People,” “This Is 40,” and “Trainwreck” he also produced “Anchorman,” “Step Brothers” “Suberbad,” “Bridesmaids,” and several other killers.

2. Television titan. Many may recognize some of today’s most famous on screen faces from a little known, cult television series TV, “Freak and Geeks.” Among the stellar cast is James Franco, Jason Segal, Seth Rogen and Linda Cardellini. Since, he’s produced a little- known HBO series by the name of “Girls,” as well as “Undeclared,” “Crashing,” and most recently the new Netflix quirky romantic comedy “Love,” which is in its second season.

3. Started from the bottom. No, we’re not talking about our other beloved MOT, rapper Drake. But Apatow also paid his dues. When he was attending Syosset High School he washed dishes at the Long Island East Side Comedy Club where he first got his exposure to stand-up comedy. As a student, he hosted a program called “Comedy Club” on the school’s 10-watt radio station. From there he managed to meet and interview some of his biggest heroes including MOTs Jerry Seinfeld, Harold Ramis, Howard Stern and the late Garry Shandling.

4. Booking it. From booking gigs as a stand-up to writing books, Apatow’s creative endeavors revolve around comedy. His 2015 best-selling book, “Sick in the Head: Conversations About Life and Comedy,” contains a compilation of interviews with fellow comedians from Mel Brooks to Chris Rock to Louis C.K. to Amy Schumer. Always one to top his own joke, his new book “Sick and Sicker” is in the works without a release date as of yet.

5. Standing up young. Eager to take to the stage, Apatow performed stand-up comedy for the first time when he was 17-years-old. Now he continues to perform at famous clubs all over, including the legendary Comedy Cellar in the West Village.

6. Philanthropic gem. In addition to Apatow bringing laughter to the world he is also involved in a number of charitable causes. He supports the literacy organization 826LA, (he edited the book “I Found This Funny” which benefited the organization as well as the Bogart Pediatric Cancer research Program and Children’s Cancer Research Center at Children’s hospital. What a mensch.

7. He’s nice. It can be tricky to believe that someone who has seen as much success and fame as Apatow can still give the time of day to the “little people,” but this guy is as humble as he is hilarious. How do we know? One of us had the pleasure of meeting him once and he was super down to earth and kind — he even made room at his super VIP table (but of course, every table he sits at is automatically VIP).  

Judd Apatow

Judd Apatow book

Sick in the head

sicker in the head

Judd Apatow new book

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