Marlon Wayans on the Moment: "I Just Fell in Love with the Art of Standup"

Categories: Interview


When you were trying to break in to the comedy industry and first starting out on In Living Color, did you find being Keenen's brother helped or hurt you?
I think it helped me in terms of getting me started, but it hurt me in terms of people expecting a degree of expertise from me and Shawn. By the time Keenen and Damon came out, they had time to grow as artists. You know, they had 16, 20 years in the bank. And me and Shawn, we were brand new. We had no bank to withdraw from. All we had was our childhood and our funny and our instincts. But along the way, we learned and crafted and became respectable artists.

We were just kids, man. Everybody was against us. Nobody believed in us. They were like, "I ain't writing for Keenen and Damon's corny-ass brothers." And this was Keenen and Damon talking. So, it made us have to prove ourselves, and it made us have to work four times as hard. We had to create our opportunities. And I honestly wouldn't change it. It made me better.

Did you eventually earn the respect of those people?
You know, by the time we did to it was too late. We had moved on, and the regimes changed, and we were out of that situation. But by the time we finished with The Wayans Bros. I think we earned our keep. And with Scary Movie, Don't Be a Menace, White Chicks, and Little Man we became partners with Keenen because we earned our way.

So right now you're focusing on standup?
I focus on a lot. Doing standup with Shawn is one of the things I'm doing. Standup is the art form that's really making me grow at the most rapid pace. It's definitely helped me a lot, and I'm so mad I didn't do this way earlier on in my career.


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