73 Questions With Dan Levy | Vogue


- [Interviewer] Hey Dan.
- Hi Vogue, welcome.
- [Interviewer] Let’s do this!
- Let’s do this!
- [Interviewer] You now why I’m here.
- I’m gonna be asked some questions today, I think.
- [Interviewer] 73 of them.
- That’s true.
- [Interviewer] How excited are you?
- On a scale of one to 10, I’m at a solid 14.
- [Interviewer] That’s not high enough,
that’s not high enough!
- That’s pretty high!
- [Interviewer] Come on!
All right let’s begin this interview.
So, what’s the first thing you thought of this morning?
- What I was gonna eat for breakfast.
- [Interviewer] What’s the first thing on your to-do list?
- Ordering what I was going to eat for breakfast.
- [Interviewer] What’s the fourth thing on your to-do list?
- Figuring out where I was gonna go for lunch.
- [Interviewer] What’s something that you feel
like should be on your to-do list but it’s not?
- Scheduling a workout for after the breakfast and lunch.
- [Interviewer] And what’s your go-to breakfast?
- Blueberry ricotta pancakes
from Little Dom’s around the corner.
- [Interviewer] Delicious.
- Mm-hm.
- [Interviewer] All right.
- Come on in.
- [Interviewer] Who’s your favorite artist?
- Chris Knight is a favorite.
I have a lot of his work.
He’s also Canadian.
- [Interviewer] Nice, and favorite cocktail?
- Oh no!
Cosmopolitan on the rocks.
Can I say that in 2019?
- [Interviewer] Yeah, you can.
It’s unique, that’s a unique answer.
And what’s your favorite scent?
- Anything woody, like a burnt wood.
Like a cedar or a pine, something oody.
- [Interviewer] Okay, who is this friendly little furry guy?
- This is Redmond.
- [Interviewer] Hey, Redmond.
- This is my dog and best friend.
- [Interviewer] How would Redmond describe
himself if he could?
- Better than all of us.
- [Interviewer] How do you think he’d describe you?
- I don’t wanna know.
- [Interviewer] What’s your favorite thing about your dog?
- He is very calm and level-headed.
Qualities that I strive for every day of my life.
- [Interviewer] Okay Dan, I’m a huge
huge fan of “Schitt’s Creek”.
I love that show—
- Thank you.
- [Interviewer] And I’m just putting it out there,
did you have any idea when it started
that you’d be here five seasons deep, Emmy-nominated,
next to the likes of all these shows right now?
- Absolutely not.
The past six years have been an absolute dream come true.
- [Interviewer] Congratulations.
- Thank you.
- [Interviewer] And you acted, produced, wrote,
and show ran “Schitt’s Creek”.
How are you still standing?
- You might wanna ask my therapist.
I don’t know.
I think when you do something that you’re passionate about,
that you love, it just comes quite easily.
- [Interviewer] Which of those roles
did you truly relish the most?
- I loved doing them all at the same time.
There was something quite amazing about having an idea
that only existed in my head and by the end of it,
seeing it come to life.
It was fantastic.
- [Interviewer] What will you miss the most about it?
- The people.
- [Interviewer] Now your character, David,
once famously said,
“When it comes to fashion—”
- Uh oh.
- [Interviewer] “Durable and elegant
“usually don’t go hand-in-hand.”
Is this really true?
- I love durability in my clothing
and I think this sweater is both durable and elegant
so I’m gonna say I disagree with David Rose.
- [Interviewer] Now as someone who is
never not well-dressed—
- Thank you.
- [Interviewer] What style advice can you offer?
- I think you have to feel comfortable in the clothes
that you’re wearing because if you are uncomfortable,
people can see and people can tell
and that’s not a good look.
- [Interviewer] Is there any trend you
are uncomfortable trying?
- Hats, but I’ve tried all those trends
and they did not work out unfortunately.
- [Interviewer] What was the last thing that you purchased?
- A house.
- [Interviewer] Congrats again.
- Thank you very much.
- [Interviewer] Adulting so hard!
- Mm-hm, I know, I’m terrified and excited.
- [Interviewer] What’s the most lux thing
that you’ve ever worn?
- Probably the Rick Owens leather jacket
that I wear in the pilot episode of our show.
It was actually mine from my own closet.
I bought it with my first paycheck.
I went to the store in New York.
I swiped my credit card, my hand was shaking,
and I’ve worn it every day since
and I’m so glad that it made it into the show.
You gotta get your money’s worth at the end of the day.
- [Interviewer] What is something you can
never over-invest in?
- Your relationships with your friends,
and family, and loved ones.
- [Interviewer] Wise words, what is your
most prized possession?
- My relationships and
I mean this is gonna seem sort of boastful.
- [Interviewer] Okay.
- But why not?
- [Interviewer] I’m ready for it.
- My MTV Movie Award.
- [Interviewer] That’s it, I was gonna say,
“That is an MTV Movie Award!”
- It is indeed.
- [Interviewer] I saw the popcorn.
- And I’ll tell you why it means so much to me.
I started my career at MTV as a television host
so to win this for my role on “Schitt’s Creek”
was a full circle moment.
- [Interviewer] That’s cool, look at that.
- Its also very heavy so I use it to work out.
- [Interviewer] Yeah, it’s a good way to do exercise.
- [whispers] I don’t, I don’t do that.
- [Interviewer] What is your favorite movie of all time?
- Bridget Jones’s Diary.
- [Interviewer] What is your favorite song of all time?
- If pressed, I would say “I Will Always Love You”
by Dolly Parton/ Whitney Houston.
I will take either versions.
- [Interviewer] It’s a good combo.
- Mm-hm.
- [Interviewer] Now I heard a rumor
that you’re a huge Beyonce fan.
Can you rank every Beyonce album?
- First of all, absolutely not.
Why would I ever do that?
They’re all masterpieces.
- [Interviewer] All right.
- And second of all, is someone not a Beyonce fan?
- [Interviewer] Doesn’t exist.
- Okay.
- [Interviewer] Doesn’t exist.
- Just checking.
- [Interviewer] Now if it’s not Beyonce though,
can you rank every Mariah Carey album?
- Absolutely not, why would you ask me that?
They’re all masterpieces.
- [Interviewer] Okay, I get it, I get it.
Now, if you were seated at a dinner table
with Beyonce and Mariah Carey,
how would you kick off the conversation?
- Well, first of all, I would’ve passed out
when I got the invitation to that dinner,
so I would be unconscious for the dinner
because people would have to marionette my body
into making it look like I was enjoying myself.
[doorbell rings]
- [Automated Voice] Someone’s at the door.
- I will say this.
Mariah Carey once tweeted about our show
and I had a full panic attack.
- [Interviewer] That’s a pretty big deal.
- It is a big deal.
I got on the airplane and I cried.
I don’t know why I just told you that I cried.
- [Interviewer] That’s okay.
- I guess we’re getting pretty intimate.
- [Interviewer] What did you get?
- These are blueberry ricotta pancakes for Little Dom’s.
- [Interviewer] That sounds good.
- [Dan] Mm-hm.
- [Interviewer] Now, let’s talk about your creative process.
- Oh, that sounds intellectual.
- [Interviewer] It is.
Time to get intellectual.
When is the best time for your writing?
- I feel like every CEO says in the mornings
but for me it’s very, very late at night.
- [Interviewer] And where do you get
your inspiration writing?
- In my little writer’s nook
that I’ll show you right now.
- [Interviewer] Oh, that sounds nice.
What’s the most important thing for you when writing?
- Oh boy, probably to just make sure
that anything I’m writing feels honest
and grounded and real.
- [Interviewer] Yeah, do you remember the first
thing you ever wrote?
- Yes, it was a short story about a young girl
that got kidnapped and taken to Russia
at the turn of the century.
- [Interviewer] What inspired that?
- I don’t know, I’ve never been to Russia
and I know nothing about the turn of the century.
So, I remember my grandmother crying at the story though,
but that could be because it was so bad.
- [Interviewer] At what age did you feel confident
in your voice as a writer?
- I would like you to re-ask me that question in a decade.
- [Interviewer] Okay.
How do you beat writer’s block?
- On the best of days, I would walk around the block.
On the worst of days, I would plan a trip somewhere.
- [Interviewer] Whose writing do you read or hear
and feel utterly blown away by?
- I would say Joan Didion, or nowadays,
Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
- [Interviewer] Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
- A fellow 73-questioner.
- [Interviewer] She is incredible.
Dan, would you consider yourself to be a routine person?
- No, I am not a routine person.
- [Interviewer] Ah, no routines.
So, you don’t have a morning or evening
skincare beauty routine?
- I would say, in that case, I am a routine person.
I have a regimented skincare routine
that I don’t care to share with all of you.
- [Interviewer] I knew it, I knew it.
So, besides the MTV Movie Award,
what is your exercise regimen?
- I take a lot of walks around the block
like a 92-year-old grandmother in Florida.
I have bad knees.
- [Interviewer] What three staples should everyone
have in their closet without fail?
- I would say a great pair of dress shoes,
a great pair of dress pants,
and a crisp white T-shirt.
- [Interviewer] Whose fashion advice do you worship?
- Paul Newman.
And I wish I could ask him about it.
- [Interviewer] What’s something you learned from The Gap
that still holds true.
- How to perfectly fold a turtleneck sweater.
- [Interviewer] If you could distill your personality
into one item of clothing,
what would it be and why?
- I guess sweater.
- [Interviewer] Sweater, yep.
- For lack of a better idea.
I don’t know, they’re versatile,
they can be expensive and cheap,
and they pretty much, I guess, look good on everybody.
Does that even make sense?
- [Interviewer] It does.
- Okay, I’ll go with your word on it.
- [Interviewer] Totally, coherent.
- All right.
- [Interviewer] You source costumes for your show
which was the hardest to find?
- Season two of “Schitt’s Creek”
I wanted this Helmut Lang mohawked hoodie
that I had longed for for quite some time.
It took me six months to find.
I finally found it on Ebay
and we purchased it, we wore it,
and I now have it in my closet.
- [Interviewer] Who’s your favorite designer right now?
- Dries van Noten.
- [Interviewer] Who’s the most fashionable character
on any rom-com ever?
- Bridget Jones.
- [Interviewer] Favorite fashion moment
in any rom-com ever?
- Probably, “This dress is an Alaia.”
When Cher Horowitz was held at gunpoint in “Clueless”.
- [Interviewer] That’s a good one.
- Mm-hm.
- [Interviewer] You were born in Canada.
- I was born in Canada, proudly.
- [Interviewer] What does Toronto have over L.A.?
- I would say the seasons and nice people.
- [Interviewer] What’s the most Canadian thing about you?
- I say sorry a lot.
Sorry, is it sorry here?
I don’t know.
- [Interviewer] I’m not hearing none of those.
- Sorry, sorry.
- [Interviewer] Now, you said growing up
you were an introvert as a kid.
Do you still say that you are an introvert?
- Yes, which is why a one-take 73 questions situation
is not necessarily in my comfort zone.
- [Interviewer] Well, you’re doing fine.
And we have some family over here.
- [Dan] Oh.
- [Interviewer] Is this a photo of you and your dad?
- This is a photo of my family
and a photo of me and my dad.
My dad actually gave me this little framed photo
on the last day of shooting our show.
- [Interviewer] What does it say on that?
- It says, “Daniel, it was an honor being
“your partner, son.
“Dad, XO”
Oh no, I don’t wanna cry for you Vogue
but I just might.
- [Interviewer] You’re so lucky to have a father like him.
- He is a lovely, lovely, sweet, generous man.
- [Interviewer] Now, when you were growing up
did you have any idea that he was famous?
- Not until I was around 15 when “American Pie” came out
and then everyone started asking me
if the movie was based on my life.
And unfortunately, I have not made love to a pie.
- [Interviewer] You wrote his part on “Schitt’s Creek”.
- I did.
- [Interviewer] How similar is that persona
with his real-life one?
- I would say there’s a lot of similarities.
He does not like getting his hair wet.
So obviously in the first season of our show
I wrote a scene where his hair gets wet.
It’s what you do to your family.
- [Interviewer] Dan.
Now everyone in the show is individually so funny.
- They are indeed.
- [Interviewer] Who is often the first to crack up?
- I would say me.
And then, I built it into my character.
I feel like David laughs a lot at people.
And that’s just my way of blurring the lines
between my unprofessionalism and his eccentricities.
- [Interviewer] Now, you once described “Schitt’s Creek”
as being a celebration of love.
And rather than just a comedy a drama with comedic elements.
- That is, you have done your research, wow.
- [Interviewer] Would you change that?
- No, I think that is the most accurate
description I have heard so far.
- [Interviewer] What’s something you learned recently
that really impressed you or blew your mind?
- How cashews are made.
They’re not made they’re actually grown on trees.
Anyway, Google it it’s crazy.
- [Interviewer] Okay.
What are you currently excited about in life right now?
- Figuring out what my next show is going to be
and also, I have a little…
I’ve been working on something and I guess Vogue
is the place to show it to.
- [Interviewer] Oh, saving it for Vogue that’s smart.
- Uh-oh, I’m nervous.
- [Interviewer] What’s your favorite book?
- It’s a long-form poem called “Autobiography of Red”.
- [Interviewer] Right, what’s your favorite pizza?
- Pepperoni, double cheese.
- [Interviewer] Do you have any regrets, Dan?
- I feel like regrets are a waste of time.
- [Interviewer] What was the last thing that made you cry?
- Shooting the last episode of our entire series.
- [Interviewer] What was the last thing
that made you cry from laughing?
- Shooting the last episode of our entire series.
- [Interviewer] And when was the last time
you were surprised?
- When we got our Emmy nominations.
- [Interviewer] What do you want to be remembered for?
- I guess having done some good.
- [Interviewer] Wow, take a look at that.
- Uh-oh, I don’t know.
I don’t know what these are.
- [Interviewer] Those look cool.
- Don’t look too closely they’re just samples.
But it’s a little project I’ve been working on.
- [Interviewer] Well, I want a pair of those.
- Mm-hm.
- [Interviewer] Now, you’ve been lauded
for how you present queer stories.
How does that make you feel?
- Very grateful to have been given
the opportunity to do that.
- [Interviewer] What’s been the most surprising response
from telling those stories?
- Probably the letters that we’ve received
from people who have told us that the show
has changed their relationships with
their family and friends for the better
and has made them more confident people.
- [Interviewer] That’s incredible.
- It’s amazing.
- [Interviewer] You are someone who has proclaimed
they love Japan.
- Yes.
- [Interviewer] So, this is correct?
- Verified, that is a fact.
- [Interviewer] Now, what do you love most about Japan
as a country and culture?
- I feel like when you’re there
you feel like you’re trapped between
the past, the present, and the future
and that’s pretty magical.
- [Interviewer] And what’s something you always,
without fail, have to buy when you’re there?
- Glasses.
Which is why I wanna—
- [Interviewer] I’m gonna try them on.
- I just wanna see which one works best for you.
- [Interviewer] Let’s see how I look.
- We might have to do this fitting a little later
but I would go with a sunglass, I think,
if I were to do anything.
- [Interviewer] Yeah?
Yeah, we’ll try them later.
- Yeah, we’ll figure it out.
- [Interviewer] But if I had 24 hours to spend in Japan,
what one store, bar, or restaurant should I have to hit?
- Okay, store, I would pick up something from Kapital
with a K it’s very special.
Bar, JBS which is a little record bar
and Bar Trench which is sort of a feels like
Sweeney Todd England or something.
And restaurant, there’s a little dumpling place
in Harajuku.
If you just look up best dumplings in Harajuku
you will find that place but it is extraordinary.
And they have the most amazing cucumber salad
I have ever eaten.
- [Interviewer] Nice, and I just brought you to a place
to the last question.
Talking about food, ‘cause the last question
I have for you Dan.
This has been great.
Can I have some of those pancakes
‘cause I haven’t eaten all day?
- First of all, we are not eating on camera for Vogue,
and second of all, that is an order for one, sir.
So, no you cannot.
- [Interviewer] Oh.
- I’m very grateful you were here though, sorry.
- [Interviewer] Fine, I’ll take it.
All right, thanks so much, Dan.
- [Dan] Thank you.
- [Interviewer] This has been really ,really cool.
- [Dan] Bye.