Star of 12 Years a Slave and the new movie Z for Zachiarah, Chiwetel Ejiofor talks to Jesse about dealing with creative ambition and getting into a Jiu Jitsu ring with David Mamet. Later, casting director Allison Jones talks about finding talented new actors and pushing to get them on screen. Plus Jesse considers what jump blues singer Jimmy Witherspoon can add to the discussion around race in America. Show notes
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Matt Besser (above) is a founding member of the Upright Citizens Brigade, a comedy group which brought long-form improvisation to New York City in the late 1990s, and has brought high-quality comedy to both coasts since opening theaters in New York and Los Angeles. Besser talks about the history of the group, which also includes SNL's Amy Poehler, Ian Roberts and Matt Walsh, and has also included comedy luminaries like Adam McKay and Horatio Sanz. The second season of their Comedy Central sketch series was recently released on DVD.