Confessions of a




Top telly funster reveals all in an exclusive interview from "Sorted? Magazine"

Coogan's back! This time he's taken to the stage with a

big money production stuffed full of his favorite characters.

I caught up with him in the middle of his U.K. tour to find out what makes him tick. It must have been hard work getting to where he is now...

"I remember even in the 5th form thinking'I'm going to have a shot at this acting lark.' I thought I wanted to be an actor, I liked doing comedy, I thought that I was quite good at it, but I didn't know what I was doing, I knew I had a sort of gift for mimicry, I just developed it from there. Later I was training to be an actor and it happened accidentally. I just sort of applied to drama school because that was what I read that people did when they wanted to get involved in the business."

It's obvious that Steve doesn't mind dressing up, so being in costume must help with the characters.

"Yeah I remember reading an interview with Anthony Hopkins and he said he didn't do methody things, he just put on the shoes that gave him a limp and I s'pose I'm the same".

Okeydokey, having got the skinny on Steve's early years we moved onto the heavy stuff. There doesn't seem to be a lot of full on politics in his act...

"no there's not, I mean I am political, but there's no overt politics...well there's a lot of political stand up's, and there's not a lot of polarisation of politics, and it's only when that occurs that political stand up has bite. Generally I think most political stand up that I've come across these days is dreadfully obvious and patronising and just too crude...too crudely political. If I've got anything to say politically I prefer to say it subtely one way or another, y'know, Paul Calf making a comment about feminism probably says a lot more about male attitudes towards feminismthan someone ranting on stage about how bad men are."

As we finish up I ask him about his heroes of comedy, I wasn't ready for his response....

"I'm a big fan of John Shuttleworth- his stuff is ultra subtle. I often compromise what I do to get big laughs, because I'm a comedy whore. Historically Ilike good character comedy: Basil Fawlty, Captain Mainwaring, Tony hancock-Take your pick, It's all quite mainstream. What I can't stand, what I just want to put on the record is, I hate Bernard Manning, and what I hate is magazines like "Loaded" who try to pretend it's cool to like him in an ironic way. Bernard Manning has always been shit and will always be shit. I hate what he does, I hate what he stands for, and I'm from the same town as him in Middleton, and what I hate most about him is that he tries to pretens he's only doing what people want, that he's only doing what working class people want, well a lot of the people who come to see my shows are working class,I've got quite a popular appeal,and I get a lot of ordinairy people, just genuine regular people coming to see my show, and I don't do anything racist at all. I loathe that kind of comedy. I hate Bernard with a passion, and partly because I used to work in a petrol station where he came in to have his car filled up."

So you've filled his car?

"On several occasions I used to fill up his car with petrol, and I'm pleased to say that I used to overcharge him, and each week I'd fleece him for about four quid!!!"

Good work-can I quote you on that?

"yes absolutely"

I just did.


By Jim 'THE BOY' Shanahan.


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