In the most recent episode of Gilbert Gottfried’s Amazing Colossal Podcast, Gottfried and co-host Frank Santopadre were joined by actor and comedian Robert Wuhl. Wuhl, best known for his hit HBO series Arliss, joined the hosts to discuss a variety of topics from sports to Hollywood history and everything in between.
In the last half hour of the show, the trio segued from the topic of Woody Allen and Ed Wood movies into a discussion on the Oscars. Wuhl, being one of the 6,000+ members of the Academy who gets to vote for the nominees and winners of each year, had much to say about his voting method.
First, Wuhl went off on the history of the Oscars, pointing out that the ceremony was initially a union-busting technique used by the Academy. The awards, said Wuhl, were just an easy way to attract actors and directors to one event where the Academy could shmooze and assure them that they would be taken care of and that unionizing wasn’t necessary. The awards in their initial form were, essentially, meaningless. As such, Wuhl doesn’t seem to have much sentimentality around the event.
He lambasted the insistence of fellow Academy members that an individual’s Oscar choices remain secret. “Every person in Hollywood is a political activist, talking about Obama or this one, you can talk about who you’re voting for for president, but God forbid you should mention who you voted for the Oscar for” he mused as Gottfried cackled in the way only he can.
He went on to identify his voting criteria: He votes for his friends, not just because he wants them to do well in their careers, but because of the security an Oscar nomination affords them. “Because these things are worth money, I want my friends to have security with their families. You get an Oscar nomination, that means you will have hospitalization the rest of your life, your family will have hospitalization for the rest of it’s life” said Wuhl.
Criteria number two: “No kids. No kids, under no circumstance. Zero tolerance, no kids. None. Zero.” Wuhl was passionate in his insistence that a child should never beat a lifelong actor in a measure of acting prowess. “You’re talking about people who have worked their whole lives, studied, went to cattle calls their whole life, got rejected their whole life, and you’re giving it to a fucking kid, like that six year old I sat next to last year at a dinner” he ranted as Gottfried laughed hysterically.
Last but not least: Wuhl doesn’t vote for rookies. Wuhl put it simply: “Let me ask you a question: A guy comes up to bat the first time and hits a home run, are you putting him in the hall of fame?” Simply put, for Wuhl, proving one’s talent is a marathon, not a sprint.
All in all, the interview was as enlightening as it was entertaining. Wuhl is a Hollywood veteran, an encyclopedia of information on various topics that knows how to present that information in the most riveting way possible. Together, Gottfried and Uhl had a comfortable and hilarious chemistry that proved to be a great listen for anyone interested in the entertainment industry.
Gilbert Gottfried’s Amazing Colossal Podcast can be heard 2-3 times a week via iTunes or on the show’s Soundcloud, as a part of the Sideshow Network.