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Interview with George Lopez of "Saint
This was a very fun call that we did yesterday. I
was a bit nervous because Lopez was
arrested last Thursday when he got drunk after a show in
Canada and then fell asleep on the casino floor! We weren't
allowed to ask him about that, though. He did allude to the
incident briefly during this interview. He seemed very nice
in the call.
FX NETWORK: Saint George
March 3, 2014/10:00 a.m. PST
Adriana Lemus, FX Networks / Director, Media Relations
George Lopez, Saint George
Moderator: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by.
Welcome to the Saint George conference call. At this time,
all participants are in a listen-only mode. Later we will
conduct a question and answer session. Instructions will be
given at that time. (Operator instructions.) As a reminder,
this conference is being recorded.
I would now like to turn the conference over to your host,
Adriana Lemus. Please go ahead.
Adriana: Hi, everyone, and welcome to the Saint George
conference call with George Lopez. I'd like to thank
everyone for joining us today, and to remind you that this
call is for print purposes only. No audio may be used. Saint
George premieres this Thursday, March 6th, at 9 p.m. on FX,
and as always we respectfully request that you keep the
questions focused on the series and George's career. Let's
go ahead and take our first question.
Moderator: (Operator instructions.) One moment please for
your first question.
Your first question comes from the line of Mike Hughes from
TV America. Please go ahead.
Mike: Yes, George, I thought it was interesting that you
played a good guy teacher in the show, because I remember in
your book I don't think you mentioned any teachers that you
particularly liked, and you mentioned some bad ones. What
were your teachers like when you grew up, and why did you
decide to play a teacher here?
George: Well, you know, it's interesting. I think that a lot
of Saint George—and let's start with the title. You know,
some titles make sense, you see Everybody Loves Raymond, you
see How I Met Your Mother, Modern Family. Saint George is,
needless to say, a pretty interesting title. I think you
don't become a saint until the end of your life, and how you
live your life depends on whether you become a saint or not.
I'm not sure that in my particular life I will become a
saint any time soon, but it is a great title, I love the
But also, I think opposites are great for comedy. So, in my
particular education, I didn't have the greatest teachers.
As a matter of fact, in the book I wrote about a teacher
that I knew was a comedian in high school, and then he
actually told me that for him to teach me comedy would be
wasting his time. So I actually in my life have used
negative things to inspire me to become positive.
So, the show, the guy giving back, we wanted to show that as
a way to have a sense of a place where you could go to have
specific humor about specific topics, and being a teacher
and giving back, which I do quite a bit. That really doesn't
get covered as much. But we thought that that would be a
great venue for comedy.
Mike: Okay, cool. Thanks.
George: You're welcome. Thank you.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of David
Martindale from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Please go
David: Hi, George. How are you?
George: What's up, David?
David: I'm good, thanks. I watched the pilot, I enjoyed it.
George: Oh, thank you.
David: What is it about this particular format that you love?
What is it that made you want to do another sitcom,
potentially one that will have you doing it 100 or more
George: Well, it's interesting. When I was in the clubs and I
looked at guys who were creating sitcoms, you know, Jerry
Seinfeld, and Drew Carey, when Drew Carey's first show was
going on, and particularly Tim Allen. You know, Tim Allen
had all of Home Improvement in his stand-up, and clearly you
could see that there was a show there.
With my stand-up, I didn't particularly have a focus or a
particular point of view until around '96, when somebody who
works for 3 Arts, who represents me now, told me that I
probably needed to become a little bit more focused on a
couple of subject matters. And then I decided to focus on
family and cultural differences, and then five years later
we started working on George Lopez with Bruce Helford who
had done Drew Carey, and through that kind of experience
with him—because he had worked on Roseanne and he had
created Drew Carey, that he was great at turning the
stand-ups into TV shows.
So that worked for me, and that was really a very
educational, a good time to learn. A lot of comedians were
still on TV, Raymond and Kevin James, and Damon Wayans was
on, and Will & Grace was still on, Seinfeld was coming to an
end, I think Frasier might have even still been on. So it
was a great comedy time, and then when I finished the first
show, I did the talk show, and that actually is probably the
hardest work that I think an entertainer could have in TV,
because it's every day, and it's very difficult.
But getting an opportunity to work with the guys who created
Tim Allen's show—I had a deal at Lionsgate, and then they
signed David McFadzean and Matt Williams—so that sparked my
interest because it all comes from the guys that I admired
as show runners. So, to create the first show with Bruce
Helford is an honor, and to work on Saint George with Matt
and David is something that I didn't expect, and I think the
show in the ten episodes is really good, and the cast of
actors is great. And it's funny because people say, well,
you know, you have 10 shows to try to get 90. But in the
first show, my first order was only four episodes. So, I
like what we've done with Saint George. I think the people
will like it, and I'm excited about Thursday.
David: Okay. And you've got to love Danny Trejo. How cool is
it to have him on board?
George: Yes, you know, initially that character was a friend
that I have, a guy named Vern. He’s kind of like a
right-hand guy, and when we pitched the show to FX, they
didn't like that he was a friend, they wanted him to be a
relative. And I started to write a relative that I had, an
uncle that I had that was very competitive with me, and that
my grandmother, it was her oldest son, that she thought he
could do no wrong. And I thought that was a good place to
be, because he has never worked in his life, he's covered
with tattoos, he had been in prison, and yet my mother hangs
on his every word.
So I thought that would be a great place—and, you know,
Danny Trejo hadn't done any multi-camera. Forget about the
regular schedule of multi-camera, but the 10/90 multi-camera
is twice as fast. So I remember Danny saying that usually he
would stand there and scowl, and the camera would come in on
his face, and he would say, I'm going to kill everybody
here. They would yell cut, and he could go to his trailer.
David: Okay, thanks much.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Eleni
Armenakis from TV Guide Canada.
Eleni: Hi, thanks for doing this.
George: Well, thank you. And thank Canada.
Eleni: I was just wondering, because you've been very busy
with films, how did it feel to get back on to TV with a
George: Yes, I was doing a nice run of films after the sitcom
was over, Valentine's Day was good, and then there were some
other movies. But the actual—like they always say, the
waiting around, I think some great actor had a quote that,
"I do the acting for free, but they pay me to wait." And it
is, for me, the waiting was really very difficult.
I did a movie with Jackie Chan, and this is where I made my
decision to go back into TV. I made a movie called Spy Next
Door with Jackie Chan, it was in New Mexico, and it was
freezing. Half of my trailer was warm, and half of it was
cold, but the cold part was the part I got dressed in. So,
in that trailer while I was waiting for Jackie Chan to beat
15 guys up in a warehouse, I decided that maybe waiting
around in a trailer wasn't particularly good for me,
particularly. For everybody else, hey, that's cool. But for
me I decided that I always liked TV. I like the immediacy of
TV. I think it's an honor to be on TV, and I'm excited about
actually getting another opportunity with such a great group
of actors. These actors are all very, very good.
Eleni: And I was wondering if there was a chance we'd be
seeing any familiar faces from George Lopez?
George: I think past the 10, if the show continues into the
back 90, I would love to revisit some of the characters. You
know, the father-in-law character, Emiliano Diez, was a
tremendous well of comedy. And then the mother character,
Belita Moreno, was fantastic. So I think mothers meeting
each other and becoming friends for an arc would be great,
and yes, they're all great actors, so I've been blessed in
the arena of TV to be surrounded by really, really good
Eleni: Okay. Thank you and good luck.
George: Thank you, thanks.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Jerry
Nunn from Windy City Times. Please go ahead.
Jerry: Hey, George. I was wondering where you found Olga, the
lady that plays your mother? Did you see her in like In the
Heights, or anything like that, from her Broadway stuff?
George: Yes, you know Olga was I believe in the first full
season of George Lopez, the ABC show. She played my father's
sister, and she just appeared in one episode. But yes, we
had seen her In the Heights, and she was tremendous.
We had had another actress in that part, and Olga came in
and took over the part for her, and made the show so much
better, so much easier for the other actors to work in. So
yes, when she was there—because we already had all worked
together before. But Danny and David and Jenn Lyon and
myself, all really are very fond of Olga, and looking
forward to continuing to work with her.
Jerry: Yes, she was very funny from what I saw. I want to
say, your stand-up in Chicago was so great. I just got to
see your show not too long ago, and you're just really
funny. So come back.
George: Thank you. Yes, the stand-up has been a tremendous
wealth of a place to take personal experiences, clearly, and
bring humor to them. So I appreciate that, thank you.
Jerry: Thank you.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Rosy
Cordero from Xfinity Latino. Please go ahead.
Rosy: Hey, George. How are you doing?
Rosy: So, I want to know what's wrong with George. Why
doesn't he want Concepcion? I mean, she's everything. Like,
que la pasara manito, something?
George: Yes, that's a really good question. The thing about
Saint George that, if you see the 10 episodes, the first
show—I’ve succeeded in becoming very honest about my life.
And the first George Lopez was a lot to do with an absent
father and an overbearing mother. I don't think an
overbearing mother ever really gets better. If you have an
overbearing mother, I think you're going to have her until
she's not around anymore. So, revisiting an overbearing
mother in this show made a lot of sense to me, because I
don't think we were done with anywhere near where my
grandmother got to, as far as our relationship went to.
I think this is a great extension of that first show, in the
relationship. It's a little bit edgier, it's a little bit
harder on me, but George on the show, much like myself, has
issues. He has issues with the divorce that he's trying to
resolve, he has issues with his child on the show that he's
trying to resolve. And I believe that, for me, the more
honest that I can be in the creation of it, I think the
funnier the stuff is.
But Concepcion is a beautiful woman, she's in charge of her
body, she's very sexual, she's very curvy, she's a beautiful
Latina woman, and in the show, much like in life, it would
intimidate me to be with a woman who's that secure in
herself and that positive about what she wants. So, I
thought that in creating that character it would be a great
place to show, because sometimes the man is more assertive,
and in this particular relationship, I am not. I don't
really know what I want. I don't know where my life is
going. I just got divorced, my mom has moved in with me,
I've got an uncle and a cousin that try to tell me how to
live my life. I've created a success for myself, and still
sometimes in success you don't expect it, and it's not
necessarily the most comfortable place to be. And I think
that area is good for comedy.
Rosy: Now, in the first episode, we see George being put in
an uncomfortable situation, trying to deal with the single’s
scene, and a little birdy told me that there's going to be
something to do with like a prostate exam that's coming up.
So, is the point of every episode going to be to put George
in uncomfortable situations?
George: Well, I think that the little birdy should have told
you that it's not George's prostate that's getting the exam.
So, it happens to be Danny Trejo's.
Rosy: He's the one, he's the birdy.
George: Yes, he's the one that's getting checked, and he's
never been checked. So, in our culture—and in life, not
necessarily culture, but I think that guys don't
particularly take the best care of themselves. I know
sometimes that I don't take the best care of myself. I think
that every day we should try to take care of ourselves and
not be our own worst enemy. Sometimes I've been. But in
creating the Trejo character, he's almost like an alter ego
of George. So there's a good George and a bad George, and
sometimes bad George wins.
Rosy: Thank you so much, and I think the show is great so
far, and I look forward to seeing more of the episodes.
George: Thank you very much. I appreciate that.
Moderator: Your next questions comes from the line of Greg
Staffa from Your Entertainment. Please go ahead.
Greg: Thanks for taking the time to talk to us today, George.
Your stand-up is wonderful, I love watching clips and stuff
like that of your stand-up. How hard is it, or what's more
enjoyable for you? Because with the stand-up you get
immediate reactions, you get laughs, whereas the TV show,
now you're waiting to see how other people are going to see
what you've filmed weeks, months ago. How do you approach
each one differently? And between your movies, your charity
work, your stand-up and TV shows, what is George's real
George: Yes, that's a good question. You know, I've been
doing stand-up a long time, and I continue to do it,
clearly; I did it last weekend in Canada, in Windsor, a
great show. And as experiences happen to me, I've always
found a way to make humor of them. And in serious
situations, too. So, stand-up has been a great outlet for
I don't particularly know where I would be in my life
without stand-up, because I've been doing it since I was 18,
and never really disconnected from it. So, it's been a great
partner to have in life, and always been an outlet for the
truth. I think Richard Pryor handled some of his personal
issues on stage. I got a message from Jennifer Pryor,
Richard's widow, a few messages this weekend about what
Richard would do, and all very supportive, and very funny,
But the platform from the stage to TV is a great stepping
stone. Clearly, a lot of the stand-up comedians have turned
into great—you know, Robin Williams and Billy Crystal and
Jackie Gleason was a tremendous actor, and Allan King back
in history. So, I don't mind the actual wait of taping. We
used to tape in front of a life audience. Saint George isn't
in front of a live audience, but the crew is about 100
people, so you do have 100 people around you.
I think the natural progression for me from stand-up is TV,
so to continue to do this show for another 90 or plus—FX has
been great to the show, I love that this is edgier than the
first show, and I'm excited about who's involved in the
show, actor-wise, and about tackling some bigger issues into
the back 90.
Greg: Very good, thank you.
George: I appreciate it, thank you.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Michael
Gallagher from StayFamous.net.
Michael: Hi. How has the landscape of television sitcoms
changed since George Lopez first aired? And are you still as
competitive as you were when you first started out?
George: I think the landscape has—you know, there's been a
lot more single-camera, you know, The Office, Modern Family
has had some success. There's also been Big Bang Theory,
multi-camera, How I Met Your Mother, New Girl is single
camera. There's been a balance more of single camera and
multi-camera, but back in the first show the single camera
was foreign to TV. So that's succeeded.
I think also back then there was much more reality. Like
toward the end of my first run, reality TV was huge.
Everything was reality TV, and it's not as much ten years
later, as it was ten years ago. Yes, so those are some of
the changes that I've seen.
Michael: And when you look at your career up until this
point, what are you most proud of?
George: When I look at my career up and to this point, I
think the thing that—you know, there hadn't been a
successful show with a Mexican-American star, I don't
believe in the history of TV. You know, Freddie Prinze was
Puerto Rican, and Gary and then Desi Arnaz was Cuban, so as
far as a Mexican-American, there had not been one. And it
was named after me; those guys, their shows weren't named
But I think of getting the star on the Walk of Fame the day
of the 100th episode, when a show really hadn't gone past
three episodes previous to that, is one. It's hard to
pinpoint that actual proudest thing, but one of the things
I'm proudest of is having a star on the Hollywood Walk of
Fame, because as a 15-year-old I would go to Hollywood and
we were walking through the stars, and clearly everyone
imagined their name there, but no one ever thinks that
that's going to happen. So that's been a pretty great thing.
Michael: Great, thank you.
George: Thank you.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Mike
Hughes, from TV America. Please go ahead.
Mike: Yes, I had something else, but I want to follow up on
something first. When you do the 10/90, you did the 10 over
how many weeks? And how much time would you have to do the
George: Yes, we did the 10 over—I believe it was—there was
two a week for, it might have been 12 weeks, with a couple
of weeks of preparation. But we wrote it, Matt and David and
myself wrote it for probably five months, and pitched it,
and then we started writing in May, and then shot it in
August and September. So that was all of last year, and then
we had some re-shoots to do earlier in January, which I
think we made the show clearly better as actors, as well, to
go back and redo some of the stuff the first time, which was
a great opportunity to have.
But Charlie Sheen is in his 90, and they're probably at
about close to 60 now, and they've been at it for, I'm not
sure, about a year and a half. I think it probably takes two
and a half years. The 10/90, it's an interesting thing. You
know, Tyler Perry's had success with it, and Ice Cube had
some success with it. There has been successful 10/90s, and
Martin Lawrence and Kelsey Grammer are working on a 10/90 as
well. They were working on theirs when I was re-shooting
mine in January.
But the higher the profile of the actual cast, the better
the run at the ten. So, I like having Danny Trejo in it, and
David Zayas who is just coming off Dexter, and Diana-Maria
Riva who was on The Bridge. I kind of looted FX for some
people that they had on different shows. You know, Jenn Lyon
did a great job on Justified, so in looting FX and pulling a
couple of people off Broadway, and David had a great run on
Dexter, I feel good about my run at ten.
Mike: Alright. Well, I wanted to ask you about looting Jenn
Lyon. That was the other thing I was going to ask you,
because you kind of mirror your life in some ways. The old
series you were a married guy with a family, the new series
you're a divorced guy. But the one difference you do from
your life is you have this very waspy ex-wife. How did you
decide to go that way?
George: Well, you know, culturally—comedians, culturally, it
doesn't define the whole culture. It's kind of a plus or
minus. But in the culture that I come from, the Mexican
culture, it's always been a reward to marry someone who's
been white. Not that it's bad to marry anybody that's
Latina, but when I was in high school, there were very few
white women around, and when you saw one, they did kind of
I didn't have much success with white women in my life—or
with any women in my life, to be honest with you—but that's
what makes Saint George great, is that I will explore my
imperfections, which should probably take me past the 90,
but in making her really waspy, I wanted to because I've
noticed in the last ten years, also, that people that come
to the show are not particularly of one kind with each
other. That as a society, we're much more blended, and kids
look different, and lifestyles are different, and the fact
that gluten now is around, and allergies are around, and
helmets are around, that I thought the progressive culture
and a kind of culture that is the walk it off, why are you
crying culture would be a great place to create a show from.
Mike: True, true. Okay, cool. Thanks a lot.
George: Yes, thanks.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Suzanne
Lanoue from The TV MegaSite. Please go ahead.
Suzanne: Hi. Good morning, George.
George: Good morning.
Suzanne: I was wondering, I know you said the 10/90 thing,
how many episodes have you already filmed? You've just
filmed the ten?
George: Yes, we just shot the ten. They're really kind of
ten—I wouldn't say an arc, you don't have an arc in ten, but
there are some things that continue to pop up in the ten
that give people an idea of what the 90 would be like. But
each one of the ten is a different topic, almost like ten
The one that we shot that was going to be the first episode,
was one that Matt, David and I wrote, called "Why Can't We
Be Friends," and that's not going to air as the first
episode. But also, all of those ten episodes, because I am
such a fan of classic rock, all ten episodes are named after
classic rock songs.
Suzanne: Oh, cool. Yes, because you and I are the same age, I
George: Yes, so there's "Carry On Wayward Son," and there's
"Won't Get Fooled Again," about dating. I think that's
actually the one that's airing Thursday, it's called "Won't
Get Fooled Again."
Suzanne: Okay, cool. And I was wondering, between being a
stand-up comedian and your sitcoms and everything, you're
often pulling things from your real life, and your family
and friends. Does anyone in that group, your real life
family and friends, ever complain about things that you have
the characters do? Or incidents in real life, anything like
George: Yes. I'm not going to tell you who, I think anybody
could figure—you don't have to be a CSI detective to figure
out who would be upset. But clearly, you know, I have to be
honest with everybody that's listening. There's not going to
be a lot of things that I say about people in my private
life that are not going to upset people in my private life.
But also, it's what has driven me from the time that I first
stepped on stage in 1979. So it's not going to change
because of last weekend, and it will not change creatively
for me, as long as I either do stand-up, or am honored to be
involved in television.
Suzanne: So, 1979. So were you in high school, or just out of
high school when you first stepped on stage?
George: I actually was getting ready to graduate from high
school. It was June 4th of 1979, and I didn't graduate until
the 18th so, yes, I was still in high school.
Suzanne: Well, cool. I graduated in '79, too. Alright, '79
rules. Alright, thanks very much.
George: That was a good year, thank you.
Moderator: Next we'll go to the line of Rosy Cordero from
Xfinity Latino. Please go ahead.
Rosy: Sorry, one more quick question. George's ex-wife is
still very much involved in his life. To move forward, will
he have to cut back on their relationship, because I'm sure
it's complicated since they share a son?
George: Well, the child on Saint George, you know, the wife
is asking George to be more of a parent in divorce than he
was when he was married. So Harper—great name—is 12, so by
the time he's 18, she'll be around, bringing him around, and
then he'll be around and she'll be around.
I don't think that because a relationship ends and there's a
child involved that the other person particularly
disappears. And in Saint George, Mackenzie will be around in
the future to be a place where—you know, she has a healthy
life, she'll date and move on, and then I'll have to deal
with the fact that my ex-wife is dating and has a happy
life, and then I'm stuck with my mom and my uncle and my
cousin. It already sounds unhealthy.
Rosy: Yes, because in the first episode we see how he's
trying to get back into dating life and all that, but he's
talking to her about it, and that's his ex that it seems to
me like he hasn't fully gotten over, and he bumps into her
at the bar, she's like oh, come and sit with us, and you’re
like on that side, whether or not he should cut back on his
relationship with her.
George: Yes, he probably should, but she's in a healthier
place. She just started to date, and she's a little bit
jealous as well of him, you see it a little bit. But you see
her moving on, and you see me not really knowing where to
go, as far as dating.
I think one of the lines that sticks out to me is that those
guys, Danny Trejo says, come on, let's go to the club, El
Sueño, there's like all these young girls there. And then
you see a lot of older dudes with younger women, and I said,
“We're old enough to be their fathers,” and he goes, “I
know.” And I said, “It's disgusting,” and he said, “Well, we
have to give them something to regret.” So it's a little
bit—you know, I saw a guy who was older with a younger girl
on an airplane to San Francisco, and it did strike me as not
looking the healthiest.
Rosy: Perfect, thank you.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Bruce
Ivan from Here Is TV. Please go ahead.
Bruce: Hi. So earlier you were saying you really enjoy
working on TV. I'm wondering, do you enjoy watching TV, and
if so, what shows?
George: Yes, I spent a lot of time when we were creating this
show, and even after my first experience on TV, I wasn't
particularly a huge fan of TV. I'm coming back around. It's
almost like, you know, if you really kind of found out what
was in a hot dog, you wouldn't necessarily want to eat a hot
dog? So, the first experience going through that, it does
come to light what a business this is. And it's eye-opening
So, coming back around and watching TV again, I was a huge
fan of The Sopranos and Breaking Bad, absolutely Breaking
Bad. Everybody was telling me about Ray Donovan, that it
would be a show that I would particularly like. And it's
interesting, I was on a plane back from Detroit and I
watched I think four episodes of Ray Donovan, which is a
really, really good show. So there's always been great
shows, but I think right now with networks like FX, you
know, Justified and Sons of Anarchy and comedy being a
little bit edgy, Louie was very edgy, that on the scope of
network TV and cable TV there are some really good shows out
Bruce: Cool, thank you.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Kelly
Schremph from TVRage. Please go ahead.
Kelly: Hi, George. It's so great to get to talk with you. We
covered this a little bit before, but how would you say
Saint George differs to your other work, like on George
Lopez. Like in particular, what would you say to those who
maybe didn't watch George Lopez, to get them to tune in to
George: Yes. Well, first of all, one was a network family
show on ABC. And this one is a cable family show on FX, and
there's no real similarity as far as—you know, I had a guy,
who was a great guy, who was the standards and practice guy
on ABC. And he'd always run down and tell us what we could
say and couldn't say, and cover up a logo, and you couldn't
do this, you couldn't do that. And on FX on this show the
humor is a lot edgier, a lot of the shows are edgier, I
think society has gotten a bit edgier, with social media is
edgier. And this show mirrors probably where we are in
society right now. It's a little bit edgier, it's diverse.
Modern Family succeeded with having a very diverse group of
actors, not necessarily ethnicity wise, but as well as
ethnicity; how they behaved and who they were in life. So I
think this has a lot of the elements of that. So, I think
people would enjoy this show. It might be a little shocking
with some of the stuff, but FX, their slogan is fearless. I
wouldn't say this was necessarily the craziest show on TV,
but it is a lot different than my first one.
Kelly: Great. Thank you so much. I wish you the best of luck.
George: Thank you, I appreciate that.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Bryn
Sandberg from The Hollywood Reporter. Please go ahead.
Bryn: Hi, George Thanks so much for doing this. You had
mentioned earlier that you'll be tackling some bigger issues
as the show goes on, and I was curious if you could talk
more about what those issues are, and how you plan to
George: Yes, well the issues that are in the first ten is
clearly getting a divorce and having to move on with where
you were, where George is at that particular time, dealing
with a child that he didn't spend too much time with because
he was working. There's an aspect of the mother continuing
to be hard on him.
I've known relationships with friends, whose mothers still
try to tell them how to live their lives, even as full grown
adults and men, which I always found interesting, that they
always listen. And with the uncle who is a kind of a
bumbling guy, who's very close to his son in a kind of—not a
traditional way, but you can see that there's a lot of love
between these two characters.
So, between losing love and seeing a father and son
relationship, and being ridden hard by his mother and trying
to tell him how to run his life, and always being very
negative, George will have to find a place that's peaceful
to him. So to mirror the real life, me like everyone else is
trying to find peace, and sometime it's not always the
easiest thing to find. It doesn't make us bad people, it
just makes us flawed, and I think as humans we all have
flaws, and how you respond is a great way to live a better
I'm not sure that a comedian should be a role model, because
we're so loose with language and with situations, but as a
person, much like I would want George on the show, I want
the real George to be able to finally find a peaceful,
healthy place in his life.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Sean
McCarthy from The Comic's Comic. Please go ahead.
Sean: Hey, George. Thanks for the call. I'm wondering, the
10/90 model didn't really exist as an option for you the
first time around with ABC. Doing the show for FX, what kind
of advice did you get from other actors or people behind the
scenes in terms of how to approach a 10/90 model
George: Yes, it's interesting, and that's a good question
because Charlie Sheen, you know, Anger Management is created
with Charlie and those guys, but also Bruce Helford is
Charlie's executive producer, he is his show runner. And
Helford was my show runner on George Lopez. So he's been
great, and his template for the way that Charlie does his
show has been helpful to the way that we did Saint George.
So, I was fortunate to have the guy that I created my show
with create Charlie's show, and only be a phone call away.
But also with my own creators, Matt and David have guys that
had just written hours—I mean, Matt worked on Cosby, he
created Roseanne, and he created Home Improvement. So
pedigree-wise, as far as creators and people around comedy,
I don't think I've ever been in a better situation. I don't
think a comedian could be in a better situation moving
forward into a new format, with an old kind of sitcom thing
that people are familiar with. But the 10/90 model was
something that we didn't bump up against at all.
Sean: And on the other hand, have you been able to give any
advice to any of the dozens of people who are now in late
George: Oh no. Those guys, listen. I enjoyed my two years, it
was very difficult, but I had some great guests and if you
look back on some of those things, Kevin Hart was really
just kind of popping at that time, and he was tremendous on
the show. Ken Jeong, and I had Prince on the show. I had a
I miss the actual on-stage part more than I miss the
behind-the-scenes part, dealing with what I could say and
could not say, and do all of that. But the band was
tremendous, and the guests were amazing, and the audience
was, I think, one of the more diverse and bigger audiences.
I think there were 500 people that even now, considering
that late night has.
But Jimmy Fallon's off to a great start, and that's great.
Seth as well, and Jimmy Kimmel's doing great. So, it's a
tough thing, there's a lot of traffic, but all of those guys
seem to be finding their own place.
Sean: Would you rather be sitting at home, wondering about
the ratings for Saint George, or Lopez Tonight at this
George: At this point, I like my ten shows on Saint George.
It gives me more flexibility as well, as a private person,
to do the things that I enjoy doing. Working every day like
that was very limiting as far as what you could do and how
you spent your time.
Sean: Golf season is always just right around the corner.
George: Okay, I played yesterday.
Moderator: Your next question comes from the line of Mike
Hughes from TV America. Please go ahead.
Mike: Yes, I was thinking, you know, sometimes guys are just
subconsciously intimidated when they're around other guys
who are tougher than they are or bigger than they are, and I
was wondering two things. First of all, if that was true of
you when you were a kid and wanted to seem fairly tough and
so forth? And what's it like nowadays, to be constantly
around a guy like Danny Trejo, who is really, really tough
in real life? Or a guy like David Zayas who plays a tough
cop so well. Is that intimidating in some way?
George: You know, that's a really good question. That’s a
good question. When I was growing up, I didn't have a father
figure, and my grandfather was not a bad guy. He had some
demons, as well, he wasn't my biological grandfather, but he
was my grandmother's second husband. He drank a little bit,
I saw that growing up, and he never had kids. I think our
relationship suffered a little bit in that, but I started
playing golf in 1981, and I have played since 1981. It's
always been a great outlet for me, but it doesn't take the
place of a human being.
So, I've never really had a system of a man in my life that
I could communicate with when I had issues, but I've talked
to Danny Trejo, who is Machete, and is intimidating with
tattoos, and he spent time in prison, but also he hasn't had
a drink in 45 years. And David Zayas, who plays a tough cop,
is one of the sweetest guys that I've ever met. So I've
talked to Danny a couple times over the weekend, and to move
forward in Saint George and into the back 90, and think that
I would for the first time be around a couple of guys who
would actually be useful to me in my private life. So, I
look forward to spending a lot of time with Danny in the
near future, and getting some guidance from him would be
fantastic at this point.
Mike: That's cool. Thanks a lot.
George: Alright, thanks.
Moderator: Your next question comes from Sean Daly from
TheTVPage.com. Please go ahead.
Sean: Hi there. How are you, George? Good morning.
George: Great. Thank you, good morning.
Moderator: Sean Daly, do you have a question? Mr. Daly's line
disconnected, we'll move on. Your final question comes from
the line of Stacy Roberts from Seriously?OMG!.com. Please go
Stacy: Hi, George Thank you again for taking part in this
call, and the show is really funny.
George: Thank you very much.
Stacy: You told why you came back to television, but how did
Saint George come about?
George: That's a good final question. I was born on April
23rd, and April 23rd is Saint George Day. So, when I was
born, my father left when I was two months old, and I think
my grandmother knew that he was not the greatest guy to be
around, for my mom. So he left when I was two months old. I
don't think they wanted to name me after him, so my
grandmother was always big into the bakery calendars, the
bakery calendars that when you went around Christmas and you
got some bread and stuff, they gave you a calendar every
year. And she would always have that in the kitchen where
she put her make-up on. And all of the days, a lot of them
are named after saints.
So I think that the day that I was born, she knew that it
was Saint George Day, and decided to name me George. So
knowing that story growing up, I've always had Saint George
in my head, growing up. I don't live, clearly, as much of a
saint, but who does really? So it's always been around, and
I always found it to be a great title. Saint George The
prince in England, the future king is named George.
I bought a house in Los Angeles, the first house that I
purchased after my divorce, and it's an older Spanish-style
house, and I had some work done to it. And the fireplace was
really kind of dirty and sooty, and I wasn't sure what I was
going to do with it, and I actually was thinking about
tearing it out. So I asked the contractor, I said, listen,
I'm going to tear this out. And he says, well, the fireplace
is old, let me clean it up.
So he sandblasted the inside of it, and on the inside of the
fireplace, and it's been there for over 60 years, is an
emblem of Saint George, in the actual fireplace. So it's
funny that being born on Saint George, always having it
around, and living as I do, and then finding that in the
fireplace, it's powerful. So I like my chances for the show,
and in the future.
Stacy: Okay. Now, if you get the 90 episode pick up, do you
think you have 90 classic rock songs to name the episodes
George: You know, that's a good question. I think that
there's a wealth of them, but we may have to bleed into the
disco era of the early '80s to mid-‘80s.
Stacy: And one last question. Can you preview the remaining
nine episodes, since we've only seen one?
George: Yes, let's see. There's an episode of—well, that's
hard to do actually. Let me go by the titles, and then we'll
see. So there's "Carry On Wayward Son," where my mom has an
accident in the house and I decide to go play golf instead
of taking care of her. There's one called "Superstition,"
where Danny Trejo has to go to the doctor because he's never
had an exam. He's having difficulty urinating. That one’s
called “Superstition.” There's one called "I Wish," which
was a great Stevie Wonder song—I only know them by the
actual song titles—that one is about a birthday party for
the son, cultural differences in a birthday party. There is
"Hot Blooded," where I meet a woman who is much like my
ex-wife, a successful person, an individual who runs a
cosmetic line, and that doesn't work out well for me.
There's "Why Can't We Be Friends," which is the first one,
and it's really about the mom and her issues with people of
different races, and then you see me going to the school for
the first time.
What else is there? Yes, those are the ones that I can
Stacy: Okay, I can't wait to see those.
George: Oh, there's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot," which is
about disciplining your child. Yes, there's those. That
might be close to ten.
Stacy: Okay. "Hit Me With Your Best Shot," is the '80s, but
George: Oh, it is? No, I think it might be the late '70s.
Stacy: Oh, okay. Cool, thank you very much.
George: Thank you.
Adriana: Well thank you, everyone, for joining us today,
especially George Lopez. As a reminder, Saint George
premieres Thursday, March 6th at 9 p.m. on FX. You may now
disconnect. Thanks again.
Moderator: Ladies and gentlemen, that does conclude your
conference for today. Thank you for your participation, and
for using AT&T Executive TeleConference. You may now
Read our review of the show!
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