If you don’t know who Doug Benson is by now, you very well may not be smoking enough weed. The standup comedian (Gateway Doug), actor (The Greatest Movie Ever Rolled) and podcast veteran (Doug Loves Movies, Getting Doug with High) has made Eugene a regular stop four years running for his 4/21 show at WOW Hall. EW caught up with the green funnyman to talk shop, pot, podcasts and more.
Oregon has become one of your preferred touring destinations. What do you look forward to most before you come to Eugene for your annual 4/21 show?
The reason I do a show in Eugene every 4/21 is because it’s the weediest city in this country. And I mean that as a compliment. People in other cities would whine and complain about me missing the all-important 4/20 date, but Eugene is cool with keeping the celebration going. Every day of the year! So I’ll be back at WOW Hall for every 4/21 as long as they will have me.
Comedy podcasts allow for a unique sense of collaboration. What do you look for in a guest on your shows? Likewise, which shows have been your favorites to guest on?
I like to book my friends and famous people. Some of my guests are both, which is the best. You can’t fake the chemistry that comes with friendship. I’ve lucked out that people like Sarah Silverman, Zach Galifianakis and Jon Hamm say “yes” when I ask them to come on my shows. As far as other podcasts go, I always have a good time on Comedy Bang Bang, Nerdist, How Did This Get Made? — the list goes on and on. A lot of my friends have podcasts!
Tell us about why you started the Getting Doug With High podcast. What are some of the funniest moments that have come from smoking with celebrities on this podcast?
I started it because there’s no better time to me than smoking with my friends and shooting the you-know-what. So, why not do that on camera? And of course something like that can only happen on the internet. With all the weed I smoke, it’s hard to remember the funniest moments from the show, but [comedian] Jenny Slate forgetting she was on a show and spacing out was a good one. And Jeff Ross getting so high that all he could do was roast me and our ramshackle set.
Your live show The Doug Benson Movie Interruption allows you to break the most important moviegoer etiquette and say whatever you like while watching a movie. What kind of movies/movie stars make for the funniest interruptions?
The best films to interrupt are dumb action movies. Great action movies are fun to interrupt, too, because they all tend to be over-the-top and silly. Anything with Patrick Swayze, Arnold Schwarzenegger or Tom Cruise is money in the bank in that regard.
Your sense of openness with marijuana has been an integral part of your comedy. How important do you think the legalization movement is? Do you find comedy to be helpful or hurtful to the cause?
I think making jokes about weed helps to make it more mainstream. Or at least I hope so. While legalization is a complicated issue, the bottom line for me is that no one should be incarcerated for weed-related crimes. Unless they steal some of mine!
For funsies, please provide us with two truths and a lie from your most recent comedy tour.
I travel with edibles everywhere I go. People give me weed everywhere I go. Everyone wants to have sex with me.
Doug Benson performs his sticky shtick 8 pm Monday, April 21, at WOW Hall; $20 adv., $22 door. Q&A has been edited for length and clarity.