You Must Remember This

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Jason Mitchell and Karina Longworth

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Jason Mitchell
Guests: 
Karina Longworth

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Photo: Paras Griffin / Getty Images

Jason Mitchell on his new film 'Tyrel' and portraying Eazy-E in Straight Outta Compton

First up: Jason Mitchell! We can't wait to share this conversation with you – he's an up and coming actor with a lot of great stories to tell. He's magnetic, and as you'll hear in our interview he's extremely charming.

Recently, he's been in a lot of acclaimed movies and television shows. In Netflix's "Mudbound" he played a World War II veteran who returns to rural Mississippi. Or perhaps you've seen him on Lena Waithe's Showtime series "The Chi," he starred as Brandon. He's probably best known for his breakthrough role: 2015's "Straight Outta Compton." He sort of stole every scene he was in as Eazy-E.

His latest film "Tyrel," is out now. In it, Jason stars as Tyler: a young guy who lives with his girlfriend in New York. Deciding he wants to get out of the city for the while, he takes a trip with a handful of guys his age. He rides out to Catskills for a long weekend in a cabin.

The plot really thickens when you learn that the guys in the cabin are all friends of friends. He doesn't really know any of them. And the other thing: Tyler's black, while everyone else on the trip is white. It's an awkward and weirdly plausible look at race and masculinity and how people react when they have to deal with those topics head on.

Jason will talk about how this film helped create a friendship with co-star Michael Cera. He'll also discuss his road to stardom: he didn't get his first role until he was 24. And it wasn't an easy road – he was raised in a tough part of New Orleans, his home was devastated by Katrina, and he had run-ins with the law when he was younger. Plus, as a former professional oyster shucker he'll give us some tips for preparing the culinary delicacy.

Listen to this segment on YouTube!


Photo: Jesse Thorn

Karina Longworth on her new book: 'Seduction
Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood'

The Golden Age of Hollywood was a fascinating time – this was the era of James Dean, Orson Welles and "Gone With The Wind." Look up the topic and you'll find hundreds of books, movies, TV shows, and even bus tours. Sometimes those depictions will get swept up in the glitz and glamor. Other times it's quite the opposite: dark, morose, and gritty.

Karina Longworth is writer and host of the hit podcast "You Must Remember This," which looks at some of the secrets of Old Hollywood. She's an expert on the history of Hollywood's Golden Age and she's written five books on the topic to prove it. Her latest book: "Seduction
Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood
," explores Hughes' time as a producer and director.

It's as sordid and cutthroat as you might imagine. The book talks about Hughes' role in Hollywood back then. The dozens of movies he financed, the few he wrote and directed. The weird, abusive system he created to recruit and develop young actresses – and the way he manipulated them. Longworth's book is beautifully written, and meticulously researched. She talks about the impact and damage done by Hughes and the people whose lives he affected forever.

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Photo: Namco

The Outshot: Katamari Damacy

Finally for The Outshot, Jesse describes the whimsical world of Katamari Damacy – a video game that will fill you with wonder. A remastered version of the game has just been released. It's the perfect time to reflect on the simple joys of this funky little game.

Listen to this segment on YouTube!

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Caroll Spinney and Dave LaMattina & Ian Edwards

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Dave LaMattina
Guests: 
Caroll Spinney
Guests: 
Ian Edwards
Guests: 
Karina Longworth

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in iTunes or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.

And if you're looking for a particular segment to listen to or share, check us out on Soundcloud.


L to R: Caroll Spinney on location with Kermit Love who built the original Big Bird puppet from a design created by Jim Henson.
Photo credit: Copper Pot Pictures

'I am Big Bird': Caroll Spinney and Dave LaMattina on Big Bird's Big Heart

Spend a few minutes watching Sesame Street, and you'll recognize some part of yourself in Big Bird. His kindness, curiosity and vulnerability resonate with everyone, young and old. But who brought Big Bird to life?

Caroll Spinney is the man inside the Big Bird suit, and he has been since 1969. (He's also Oscar the Grouch). Dave LaMattina is the co-director, along with Chad Walker, of a documentary about Spinney. It's called I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story.

Spinney made his television debut in 1955, working on the local Las Vegas show Rascal Rabbit, then moved on to the East Coast and performed on Bozo the Clown. But he was looking for greater purpose in his work, and he found it. He met Jim Henson and began work on the pioneering children's TV show, Sesame Street.

Spinney and LaMattina sit down to talk with us about Big Bird's physical and spiritual evolution, how the 80-year-old Spinney manages to maneuver in a full-body puppet suit, and how Big Bird has helped so many children and adults deal with loss, love and their own feelings.

I Am Big Bird has been touring the festival circuit this spring, and we caught it as part of the Los Angeles Film Festival. You can find more information about the film on their website.

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Karina Longworth on Old Hollywood Favorites: 'The Bad and the Beautiful' and 'Picnic'

Karina Longworth hosts the podcast You Must Remember This, which looks at some of the secrets of Old Hollywood. She joins us to talk about some of her favorite cinematic moments of the 1950s.

She suggests checking out 1955's Picnic. It's a movie about a handsome drifter who blows into a small town and wreaks havoc on the citizens' love lives.

Longworth also recommends The Bad and the Beautiful from 1952, a self-reflexive movie about a manipulative Hollywood producer and the studio system.

You can find Longworth's podcast on her website or in iTunes.

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Ian Edwards on his Jamaican heritage, Finding His Comedic Voice, and '100% Half-Assed'

Would you take career advice from a complete stranger? Ian Edwards did, and he's never looked back. He was working a fast food drive-through when a customer liked his banter and suggested he become a comic.

Edwards has written for Saturday Night Live and the reboot of In Living Color. He's also performed on Conan and on Def Comedy Jam on HBO.

He talks to us about moving (from England to Jamaica to New York City), finding his comedic voice, and the lessons he learned from the late Patrice O'Neal.

His new album 100% Half-Assed is the first record on the new Team Coco label.

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The Outshot: I Love LA

We return to the Newm: Jesse delves into why the Randy Newman song "I Love LA" is ironic, but also sort of... not ironic? You'll see.

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