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Choice Quotes From Rolling Stone’s Zach Galifianakis Cover Story

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“Zachy was a great little baby,” his dad says. “Went to bed when he was supposed to. Never really cried.” One of the few times in his life he ever got in trouble was when he said something inappropriate in school and had to go to the principal’s office. “It was a word that rhymed with another word,” his dad recalls. “I think it was something about ass.”

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Tru Calling

His longest job was on a Fox drama called Tru Calling, about a mortuary attendant played by Eliza Dushku who could commune with the dead. He tried his hardest to get fired. He’d tell Dushku she was eating her way to cancellation, or stand up after a table read and say to the writer, “Great script, Karen,” and throw the script in the trash.

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Circus

At one point, he was hired to write for SNL, where he pitched a sketch to albino-python-era Britney Spears in which she’s being interviewed on Entertainment Tonight when she suddenly, and without explanation, starts bleeding from the mouth. She didn’t laugh. “I remember staring at the ground for, like, 20 seconds, just silent,” Galifianakis says. “45,000 open mics, and I’m trying to impress this 18-year-old pop star.” He was there two weeks.

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© 2009 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. and Legendary Pictures

Living in a Van

"Honestly," says Hangover and Due Date director Todd Phillips, "I think the hating of Hollywood is a little bit of a defense mechanism. There's a truth to it – Zach has a very severe bullshit detector – but I think some of it has to come from dealing with rejection for so long. Living in a van. Having to go to auditions in Burbank. People not getting it."

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Photograph by Theo Wenner for Rolling Stone

Hungover

When Galifianakis says The Hangover ruined his life, he’s only half-joking. He can’t go five minutes without being approached – probably because he seems so approachable. His life is a constant barrage of minor intrusions. “I’m terrible about people wanting to take pictures with me,” he says. “I’m a giant baby about it. They treat you like a cartoon. There’s nothing you can do except make light of it. That’s if I’m in the mood – sometimes I get superbummed.”

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Photograph by Theo Wenner for Rolling Stone

Uncovered

“I’ll be honest with you: I’m not adjusting to it well. I don’t mean that as a complaint. Most people wouldn’t be well-adjusted. I just get confused by people asking me questions. For years, nobody asked me a question, ever. So now when someone says, ‘Oh, you’re going to be on the cover of Rolling Stone,’ my first reaction is, ‘Ehhh, I don’t think that’s a good idea. I mean, it’s cool – but does it have to be the cover? What’s Blink-182 doing these days?’ ”

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That Ke$ha Woman

“I saw that Ke$ha woman the other day,” he says. She’d e-mailed him about getting a drink, and a few days later, he ran into her in a bar. “She was sitting by herself, and I walked up to her and said, ‘Listen, I got your e-mail. Your music is really bad! I don’t know who listens to it, but I imagine it’s, like, six-year-olds – and it’s a bad message.’ ”

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Photograph by Theo Wenner for Rolling Stone

‘Celebrity Toilet Cams’

He thinks reality TV is a scourge – that we’re not far off from Celebrity Toilet Cams or World’s Funniest Gay Bashings. When little kids tell him they loved The Hangover, he’ll tell them they have terrible parents. “And I mean it.”

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