The many faces of Eddie Izzard. / Credit: Andy Hollingworth
Though Eddie Izzard has been appearing in more dramatic acting roles lately, such as on NBC’s “Hannibal,” the comedian promises he never really left stand-up behind. On his massive 28-country tour, he’ll take audiences on a journey through history, though with a healthy degree of freshness each night. “I improvise as much as I can in every single show,” he tells us.
What can we expect from your upcoming comedy tour? It’s a tour through my brain again, but hopefully with some intelligent points, like why the hell did we do human sacrifice? There is no logical reason why a god that created people would actually like people cut up into little bits.
Do the gods sort of want a refund on specific people? I don’t believe in a God. But I can understand why people would, especially in the old days when we were just farmers and when the weather was bad, you could see why they would say, ‘The gods hate us,’ so we must make them happy, so you do a rain dance, you do a sun dance, you make an offering, you do harvest festivals. ... But I cannot see any logic when you say, ‘What the gods really want is that one of the guys they sent down and put on the Earth, they would like killed and sent back up.’
Do you find yourself looking for material in a global way, or do you like to focus on the UK? No, because this is [my] most expansive comedy tour, and maybe [the] most expansive tour ever. I may as well claim it. There’s actually about 28 countries right now, and I’m touring in Spanish and French and German now, so I need stuff that is going to work around the world.
Which languages are you doing stand-up in? I’m about 40 percent fluent in German now. I started learning Spanish two weeks ago, went to Madrid and did seven lessons in seven days, three hours a day. And then I was putting in stand-up each night, so I was increasing it. Tonight in Los Angeles, I will do 60 minutes in English and 15 minutes in Spanish as an encore. So I invited people to come that are bilingual. It will be fascinating to see that. Once I can get the Spanish to about an hour, hour and 15 minutes, I can tour down in all of South America. That will be fantastic.