Smith at the 2014 MontClair Film Festival
May 5, 2014.
|Born||Kevin Patrick Smith
August 2, 1970
Red Bank, New Jersey, U.S.
|Occupation||Director, screenwriter, producer, actor, comedian, author, podcaster|
|Spouse(s)||Jennifer Schwalbach Smith (1999–present)|
|Children||Harley Quinn Smith|
Kevin Patrick Smith (born August 2, 1970) is an American screenwriter, actor, film producer, speaker and director, as well as a popular comic book writer, author, comedian/raconteur, and podcaster.
He came to prominence with the low-budget comedy Clerks (1994), which he wrote, directed, co-produced, and acted in as the character Silent Bob. Smith's first several films were mostly set in his home state of New Jersey, and while not strictly sequential, they frequently feature crossover plot elements, character references, and a shared canon described by fans as the "View Askewniverse", named after his production company View Askew Productions, which he co-founded with Scott Mosier.
Smith is also the owner of Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash, a comic book store in Red Bank, New Jersey. He co-hosts several weekly podcasts that are released on SModcast Internet Radio. Smith is well known for participating in long, humorous Q&A sessions that are often filmed for DVD release, beginning with An Evening with Kevin Smith.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Career
- 3 Secret Stash
- 4 Controversies
- 5 Personal life
- 6 Filmography
- 7 Popular culture
- 8 Recognition
- 9 Bibliography
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Kevin Smith was born August 2, 1970 in Red Bank, New Jersey, the son of Grace (née Schultz; born 11 December 1945), a homemaker, and Donald E. Smith (1936–2003), a postal worker. He has an older sister, Virginia, and an older brother, Donald Smith, Jr. He was raised in a Catholic household, in the nearby clamming town of Highlands. As a child, Smith's days were scheduled around Donald's late shifts at the post office. Donald grew to despise his job, which greatly influenced Smith, who remembers his father finding difficult on some days to get up and go to work. Smith vowed never to work at something that he did not enjoy. Smith later attended Henry Hudson Regional High School, where as a B and C student, he would videotape school basketball games and produce sketch comedy skits in the style of Saturday Night Live. As an overweight teen, he developed into a comedic observer of life in order to successfully socialize with friends and girls.
As a filmmaker
On his 21st birthday, Smith went to see Richard Linklater's comedy Slacker. Smith, impressed by the fact that Linklater set and shot the film his hometown of Austin, Texas rather than on a soundstage in a major city, was inspired to become a filmmaker, and to set films where he lived. Smith relates:
|“||It was the movie that got me off my ass; it was the movie that lit a fire under me, the movie that made me think, "Hey, I could be a filmmaker." And I had never seen a movie like that before ever in my life.||”|
At the time, Smith was working in a local Quick Stop convenience store in Leonardo, and decided to set his film, Clerks, at the store, borrowing the life-in-a-day structure from the Spike Lee film Do the Right Thing. To finance the film, Smith maxed out more than a dozen credit cards and sold his much-treasured comic book collection, raising the $27,575 needed to make the film. He cast friends and acquaintances in the film's major parts. Clerks was screened at the Sundance Film Festival in 1994, where it won the Filmmaker's Trophy. At a restaurant following the screening, Miramax executive Harvey Weinstein invited Smith to join him at his table, where he offered to buy the movie. In May 1994, it went to the Cannes International Film Festival, where it won both the Prix de la Jeunesse and the International Critics' Week Prize. Released in October 1994 in two cities, the film went on to play in 50 markets, never playing on more than fifty screens at any given time. Despite the limited release, it was a critical and financial success, earning $3.1 million. Initially, the film received an NC-17 rating from the MPAA, solely for the sexually graphic language. Miramax hired Alan Dershowitz to bring a lawsuit against the MPAA, and at an appeals screening, a jury consisting of members of the National Association of Theater Owners reversed the MPAA's decision, and the film was given an R rating instead. The film had a profound effect on the independent film community, and according to producer and author John Pierson, is considered one of the two most influential film debuts in the 1990s, along with The Brothers McMullen.
Smith's second film, Mallrats, which marked Jason Lee's debut as a leading man, did not fare as well as expected after the remarkable success of Clerks. It received a critical drubbing and earned merely $2.2 million at the box office, despite playing on more than 500 screens. Despite failing at the box office during its theatrical run, Mallrats proved more successful in the home video market.
Widely hailed as Smith's best film, 1997's Chasing Amy marked what Quentin Tarantino called "a quantum leap forward" for Smith. Starring Mallrats alumni Jason Lee, Joey Lauren Adams and Ben Affleck, the $250,000 film earned $12 million at the box office wound up on a number of critics' year-end best lists, and won two Independent Spirit Awards (for Screenplay and Supporting Actor for Lee). The film received some criticism from some members of the lesbian community, who felt that it reinforced the perception that all lesbians merely needed to find the right man. Smith, whose brother Donald Smith, Jr. is gay, found this accusation frustrating, as he has endeavored to be an LGBT-conscious filmmaker, believing that sexuality is more fluid, with social taboos, and not sexual desire, preventing more people from expressing bisexuality.
Smith's fourth film, Dogma, featured an all-star cast and found itself mired in controversy. The religious-themed 1999 comedy, which starred a post-Good Will Hunting Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, as well as Chris Rock, Salma Hayek, George Carlin, Alan Rickman, Linda Fiorentino, and Smith regulars Jason Lee and Jason Mewes, raised criticism by the Catholic League. The film debuted at the 1999 Cannes Film Festival, out of competition. Released on 800 screens in November 1999, the $10 million film earned $30 million.
Smith then focused the spotlight on two characters who had appeared in supporting roles in his previous four films, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back featured an all-star cast, with many familiar faces returning from Smith's first four films. Ben Affleck and Matt Damon appear as themselves filming a mock sequel to Good Will Hunting. The $20 million film earned $30 million at the box office and received mixed reviews from the critics.
Jersey Girl with Ben Affleck, Liv Tyler, George Carlin and Raquel Castro, his first outside of the View Askewniverse, was meant to mark a new direction in Smith's career. However, the film took a critical beating as it was seen as, in Smith's own words, "Gigli 2", due to the fact that it co-starred Affleck and his then-girlfriend, Jennifer Lopez. Despite Smith heavily re-editing the film to reduce Lopez's role to just a few scenes, the film did poorly at the box office. Budgeted at $35 million, it earned only $36 million.
In the 2006 sequel, Clerks II, Smith revisited the Dante and Randal characters from his first film for what was his final visit to the View Askewniverse. Roundly criticized before its release, the film went on to win favorable reviews as well as two awards (the Audience Award at the Edinburgh Film Festival and the Orbit Dirtiest Mouth Award at the MTV Movie Awards). It marked Smith's third trip to the Cannes International Film Festival, where Clerks II received an eight-minute standing ovation. The $5 million film, starring Jeff Anderson, Brian O'Halloran, Rosario Dawson, Jason Mewes, Jennifer Schwalbach and Smith himself – reprising his role as Silent Bob – earned $25 million.
Zack and Miri Make a Porno was originally announced in March 2006 as Smith's second non-Askewniverse comedy. The film, which began shooting on January 18, 2008 in Monroeville, Pennsylvania, and wrapped on March 15, 2008, stars Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks as the title characters who decide to make a low-budget pornographic film to solve their money problems. The film, which was released on October 31, 2008, ran into many conflicts getting an "R" rating, with Rogen stating:
|“||It's a really filthy movie. I hear they are having some problems getting an R rating from an NC-17 rating, which is never good... They [fight against] sex stuff. Isn't that weird? It's really crazy to me that Hostel is fine, with people gouging their eyes out and shit like that, but you can't show two people having sex – that's too much.||”|
Smith took the film through the MPAA's appeals process and received the R rating, without having to make any further edits. Zack and Miri Make a Porno was considered a box office "flop" in part because of "tepid media advertising for a movie with the title PORNO", and, in the aftermath of the film's low performance, the business relationship between Smith and producer Harvey Weinstein became "frayed". Zack and Miri Make a Porno opened #2 behind High School Musical 3: Senior Year with $10,682,000 from 2,735 theaters with an average of $3,906. The "bankable" Rogen experienced his "worst box-office opening ever". In an interview with Katla McGlynn of the Huffington Post, Smith himself observed:
|“||I was depressed, man. I wanted that movie to do so much better. I'm sitting there thinking 'That's it, that's it, I'm gone, I'm out. The movie didn't do well and I killed Seth Rogen's career! This dude was on a roll until he got in with the likes of me. I'm a career killer! Judd's [Apatow] going to be pissed, the whole Internet's going to be pissed because they all like Seth, and the only reason they like me anymore is because I was involved with Seth! And now I fuckin' ruined that. It was like high school. I was like, 'I'm a dead man. I'll be the laughing stock.'||”|
It was announced in 2009 that Smith had signed on to direct a buddy-cop comedy starring Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan called A Couple of Dicks and written by the Cullen Brothers. Due to controversy surrounding the original title, it was changed to A Couple of Cops, before reverting its original title, A Couple of Dicks, due to negative reaction, before finally settling on the title Cop Out. The film, which was shot between June and August 2009, involved a pair of veteran cops tracking down a stolen vintage baseball card, and was released on February 26, 2010 to poor reviews; it was the first film that Smith has directed but not written. Cop Out opened at number 2 at the box office and was mired in controversy, mostly over reported conflicts he had on the set of the film with lead actor Bruce Willis; marking Smith's last time that he would work with a major studio, forcing him to return to his independent film roots.
In September 2010, Smith started work on Red State, an independently-financed horror film loosely inspired by the Westboro Baptist Church and their Pastor Fred Phelps. Film producers and moguls Bob and Harvey Weinstein who had thus far been involved in the distribution of most of Smith's films, with the exception of Mallrats and Cop Out, declined to support Red State. The film stars Michael Parks, John Goodman and Melissa Leo. Smith had indicated that he would auction off rights to the $4 million film at a controversial event following the debut screening of the film at Sundance but instead, kept the rights to the film himself and self-distributed the picture "under the SModcast Pictures" banner. The premiere in January 2011 drew protests from a half-dozen members of the church, along with many more who counter-protested Westboro members. He further explained his decision as a way to return to an era when marketing a film did not cost four times as much as the film itself, a situation he has described as "both decadent and deadening". Red State was a box office disappointment, earning $1,104,682 against a budget of $4 million, and opened to poor reviews, with the consensus of critics reporting (according to the critic aggregator Rotten Tomatoes) that "Red State is an audacious and brash affair that ultimately fails to provide competent scares or thrills."
Smith has said in the past he would retire from directing and announced his last movie would be Clerks III. However, he stated in December 2013 that he would continue to make movies but only ones that were uniquely his, as opposed to generic ones that "anybody could make".
|“||From now until I drop dead, I'm only ever gonna make a flick that only I would/could ever make. JERSEY GIRL, ZACK & MIRI, COP OUT – while I love them all, these are movies anybody could make. Like ‘em or hate 'em, nobody else but me could’ve (or would’ve) ever made CLERKS. Or CHASING AMY. Or DOGMA. Or RED STATE. Or CLERKS II. Or MALLRATS. Or JAY & SILENT BOB STRIKE BACK.||”|
In 2013 Smith directed a horror film called Tusk, which was inspired by a story Smith and Scott Mosier read about a Gumtree ad for a man who rents out a room in his house for free, on the condition that the respondent dresses as a walrus for two hours per day. The project began pre-production in September 2013. Shooting began on November 4, 2013, and wrapped on November 22, 2013. The film was released on September 19, 2014. It has received mixed reviews.
Smith revealed before the release of Tusk that he had written a spin-off film called Yoga Hosers which began filming in August 2014. The film will feature two minor characters from Tusk and Johnny Depp.
In July 2014 Smith revealed that The Weinstein company has declined to finance Clerks III for the $6 million budget Smith asked for, but are willing to distribute the film. In September 2014, Smith announced on his Hollywood Babble-On podcast that he now found his financing for Clerks III. In February 2015 XYZ Films acquired him, as one of the directors, who will direct the Anthology film Holidays, along Gary Shore, Sarah Smith, Matt Johnson, Scott Stewart, Nicholas McCarthy, Anthony Scott Burns, Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer.
In 1996, Smith worked on a script for a Superman movie. He did a couple of drafts but his script was dropped when Tim Burton was hired to direct. Burton brought his own people in to work on the project. Smith still sees the whole experience on working on the Superman project as a positive one, however; he has said that he was well paid and it was a lot of fun. (In April, 2009, Smith discussed his Superman experiences at Clark University—a YouTube video critic A.O. Scott of the New York Times called "extraordinary.") In the end, neither Smith's nor Burton's vision for Superman was filmed. In the 2007 Direct-to-DVD animation release of Superman: Doomsday, Smith has a cameo as an onlooker in a crowd. After Superman defeats The Toyman's giant mechanical robot, Smith scoffs, "Yeah, like we really needed him to defeat that giant spider. Heh. Lame!" This was a reference to a giant spider that producer Jon Peters wanted Smith to put in the Superman movie when he was attached, that was later put into the 1999 feature film flop Wild Wild West, which Peters also produced.
In 1997, Smith was hired by New Line to rewrite Overnight Delivery, which was expected to be a blockbuster teen movie. Smith's then-girlfriend Joey Lauren Adams almost took the role of Ivy in the movie, instead of the female lead in Chasing Amy. Eventually she lost out to Reese Witherspoon, and Overnight Delivery was quietly released directly to video in April 1998. Kevin Smith's involvement with the film was revealed on-line, but he remains uncredited. He has said that the only scene which really used his dialogue was the opening scene, which includes a reference to long-time Smith friend Bryan Johnson.
In 2004, Smith wrote a screenplay for a new film version of The Green Hornet, and announced prematurely that he had originally intended to direct as well. The project, however died after the film was placed into turn around following the poor box office of Jersey Girl. Smith's screenplay was later turned into a Green Hornet comic book miniseries.
Comics and magazines
Smith has been a regular contributor to Arena magazine. In 2005, Miramax Books released Smith's first book, Silent Bob Speaks, a collection of previously published essays (most from Arena) dissecting pop culture, the movie business, and Smith's personal life. His second book, My Boring-Ass Life: The Uncomfortably Candid Diary of Kevin Smith, published by Titan Books, was another collection of previously published essays (this time blogs from Smith's website www.silentbobspeaks.com) and reached No. 32 on The New York Times Best Sellers List. Titan released Smith's third book Shootin' the Sh*t with Kevin Smith: The Best of the SModcast on September 29, 2009.
A lifelong comic book fan, Smith's early forays into comic books dealt with previously established View Askew characters, and were published by Oni Press. He wrote a short Jay and Silent Bob story about Walt Flanagan's dog in Oni Double Feature No. 1, and followed it with a Bluntman and Chronic story in Oni Double Feature #12. He followed these with a series of Clerks comics. The first was simply Clerks: The Comic Book, which told of Randal's attempts to corner the market on Star Wars toys. The second was Clerks: Holiday Special, where Dante and Randal discover that Santa Claus lives in an apartment between the Quick Stop and RST Video. Third was Clerks: The Lost Scene, showing what happened inside Poston's Funeral Parlor. This story was later animated in the TV series style and included as an extra on the 10th Anniversary Clerks DVD.
Smith then wrote the mini-series Chasing Dogma, which tells the story of Jay and Silent Bob between the films Chasing Amy and Dogma. He has also written the trade paperback Bluntman and Chronic, published by Image, which purports to be a collection of the three issues of the series done by Holden McNeil and Banky Edwards (of Chasing Amy). It includes a color reprinting of the story from Oni Double Feature No. 12, purported to be an early appearance by Chasing Amy characters Holden McNeil and Banky Edwards. These stories have all been collected in Tales From the Clerks (Graphitti Designs, ISBN 0-936211-78-4), which also includes a new "Clerks" story tying into the Clerks 2 material, and the story from Oni Double Feature #1. They were previously collected by Image Comics in three separate volumes, one each for Clerks, Chasing Dogma and Bluntman and Chronic. In 1999, Smith won a Harvey Award, for Best New Talent in comic books.
In 1999, Smith wrote "Guardian Devil", an eight-issue story arc of Daredevil for Marvel Comics, which was illustrated by Joe Quesada. Kevin Smith followed this by producing a 15-issue tenure on Green Arrow for DC Comics that saw the return of Oliver Queen from the dead and the introduction of Mia Dearden, a teenage girl who would become Speedy after Smith's run had ended.
Smith returned to Marvel for two mini-series: Spider-Man/Black Cat: The Evil That Men Do and Daredevil/Bullseye: The Target, both of which debuted in 2002. The former was six issues long, but after the third issue was published two months after the initially scheduled release date, the final issues were delayed for at least three years, prompting Marvel to release an "in case you missed it" reprinting of the first three issues as one book prior to the remaining issues' release. The delay in part was due to Smith's movie production schedule (in this case, work on Jersey Girl and Clerks II) causing him to shelve completion of the mini-series until the films were completed. He was announced as the writer of an ongoing Black Cat series and The Amazing Spider-Man in early to mid-2002. However, because of the delays on Evil That Men Do and The Target, the plan was switched so that Smith would start a third Spider-Man title, launched in 2004 by Mark Millar instead. While Spider-Man/Black Cat was ultimately completed in 2005, Daredevil/Bullseye: The Target remains unfinished, with one issue published.
Smith wrote the limited series Batman: Cacophony, with art by friend Walt Flanagan, which ran from November 2008 to January 2009. The series featured the villains Onomatopoeia (a character created by Smith during his run at Green Arrow), The Joker, Maxie Zeus, and Victor Zsasz. The trade paperback of Batman: Cacophony became a New York Times Bestseller in their Hardcover Graphic Books section.
In 2010 Smith subsequently wrote a six-issue Batman mini-series called The Widening Gyre for DC drawn by Walter Flanigan. The series was initially planned as 12 issues, with a long break planned between issues six and seven. After issue six was published, Smith and Flanigan's work on their reality show, Comic Book Men, extended this planned break further than expected. It was decided in the interim to release the remaining issues as a separate series to be called Batman: Bellicosity, due in 2014.
In 2000, Smith and Mosier teamed up with television writer David Mandel to develop an animated television show based on Clerks. called Clerks: The Animated Series that aired on ABC in May 2000. It aired only two episodes before being canceled as a result of poor ratings. The six produced episodes were released on DVD in 2001.
During the mid-1990s Smith directed and starred in a series of commercials for MTV, alongside Jason Mewes, in which they reprised their roles as Jay and Silent Bob. In 1998 he directed best friend Jason Mewes as "Gary Lamb – Ground Activist" in a series of Nike commercials. That same year, he also shot commercials for Diet Coke. Two years later, he directed "Star Wars" toy commercials for Hasbro. He has also directed and starred in commercials for Panasonic. In 2004 he also shot a public service announcement for the Declare Yourself organization. These advertisements brought Jay and Silent Bob out of their "semi-retirement."
Smith appears in and produces the reality television series Comic Book Men, which is set inside Smith's comic book shop, Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash, in Red Bank, New Jersey. The first season ran for six one-hour episodes, the premiere of which aired on February 12, 2012, following the return of The Walking Dead 's second season on AMC. On May 9, AMC announced that Comic Book Men was renewed for a second season of 16 half-hour episodes. AMC commissioned a third season in April 2013 and a fourth season was commissioned in March 2014.
Smith had planned to direct a hockey drama-comedy based on the song "Hit Somebody (The Hockey Song)" by Warren Zevon. The song, which is about a hockey player famous for fighting in the rink, was co-written by Tuesdays With Morrie author Mitch Albom, who is working with Smith on the project. Smith announced at the Sundance premiere of Red State that Hit Somebody will be the last movie he ever directs, and that he will continue to tell stories in other media. In August 2011 Hit Somebody was announced as a two-part film titled Hit Somebody: Home and Hit Somebody: Away with part one being rated PG-13 and part 2 being rated R, but later decided to make it one movie again. In December 2012 Smith announced that Hit Somebody would now be a six-part miniseries on an as yet unknown network. The reason given was finding funding or a studio for a hockey movie had proven difficult.
Acting roles and other appearances
As an actor, Smith is known for his role as Silent Bob in Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jay And Silent Bob Strike Back, and Clerks II. He made a cameo appearance in the horror film Scream 3, and was featured along with Jason Mewes in several Degrassi: The Next Generation episodes, including a special, "Jay and Silent Bob Do Degrassi" (also as a fictional version of himself).
Smith also appeared in an mtvU show titled Sucks Less With Kevin Smith. The show gives college students ideas for things to do on the weekends. Smith also played the role of Paul, a cynical divorced man, in a Showtime television series pilot, "Manchild", filmed in December 2006. However, it was not picked up by the network.
In 2001, he appeared in friend Jeff Anderson's Now You Know. After an August 2001 appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno to promote Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Smith returned to the show for monthly segments as a correspondent. The "Roadside Attractions" segments featured Smith traveling to random locations around the country and showcased places like Howe Caverns in upstate New York and the Fish Market in Seattle. While five of these segments were included on the Jersey Girl DVD, at least twelve were aired on the actual show. Smith regularly appeared on the program to introduce the pre-taped pieces.
In early 2005, Smith appeared in three episodes of the Canadian-made teen drama Degrassi: The Next Generation. In the episodes, Smith, portraying a fictionalized version of himself, visited the school to work on the (fictional) film Jay and Silent Bob Go Canadian, Eh! Smith wrote all his dialogue for the shows he appeared in. All three episodes were collected on a DVD entitled Jay and Silent Bob Do Degrassi. Smith and Mewes also appeared in two more episodes the following season, when they returned to Degrassi for the Toronto premiere of the fictional Jay and Silent Bob Go Canadian, Eh! movie.
In 2006, Smith guest reviewed on Ebert & Roeper, in place of Roger Ebert, who was recovering from thyroid cancer treatment. These spots have been notable for the arguments between Smith and Richard Roeper over certain films, with Smith often citing Roeper's negative review of Jersey Girl to discredit his review of the film at hand. On one appearance, Smith compared Craig Brewer's Black Snake Moan to the works of William Faulkner.
In addition to appearing on Degrassi: The Next Generation, Smith is an avid fan of the original Degrassi series, Degrassi Junior High and Degrassi High and references to the original are present in some of his early films. He also appeared in the 2009 made for TV movie Degrassi Goes Hollywood.
Smith was featured as one of the interview subjects in This Film Is Not Yet Rated, a 2006 documentary about the Motion Picture Association of America's process of rating films. Smith discussed how Jersey Girl receiving an R rating, on the basis of a conversation two characters in that film have about masturbation, which MPAA head Joan Graves told Smith she wouldn't feel comfortable having her 16-year-old daughter watching. Smith's response was to question whether Graves' daughter hadn't already masturbated or learned about masturbation, arguing that his film was not teaching 16-year-olds anything they did not already know.
Smith directed the pilot for The CW show Reaper. TV.com's summary of the show is "A twenty-something slacker finally scores a job as the devil's bounty hunter." He describes it as "less Brimstone or Dead Like Me and more like Shaun of the Dead than anything else". He went on to say that the reason he took the job was that he has always wanted to direct something he did not write, but never had an interest in doing it on the big screen.
At the 2007 San Diego Comic-Con, it was announced that Smith would write and direct an episode of the Heroes spin-off, Heroes: Origins, but the project was canceled because of the 2007 Writers Guild of America strike. That year, Smith appeared in a number of films. He co-starred as Sam in the film Catch and Release, starring Jennifer Garner. Later that year, he appeared as a hacker called The Warlock in the fourth installment of the Die Hard franchise, Live Free or Die Hard. At year's end, he appeared briefly in friend and fellow writer-director Richard Kelly's Southland Tales, in which he played the legless conspiracy theorist General Simon Theory. That same year, Smith also did voicework for the CGI film TMNT as a diner chef. He was also seen as Rusty (a friend of lead Jason Mewes) in Bottoms Up with co-star Paris Hilton.
Smith has also cameoed in the second season premiere of the sitcom Joey, where he played himself, on an episode of Law & Order in 2000 (episode "Black, White and Blue"), Duck Dodgers (2003 as Hal Jordan, voice only) and Yes, Dear (2004, as himself and Silent Bob). Smith appeared in the second episode of season two of Veronica Mars, playing a store clerk. He stated on his Web site that Veronica Mars is some of the best television work ever produced. Additionally, he appeared as Silent Bob in an episode of Yes, Dear, standing while smoking a cigarette as the end credits rolled.
Smith has appeared in five Q&A documentaries: An Evening with Kevin Smith, An Evening with Kevin Smith 2: Evening Harder and Sold Out: A Threevening with Kevin Smith. The fourth installment, Kevin Smith: Too Fat for 40 was broadcast on Epix on October 23, 2010. The fifth Q&A, Kevin Smith: Burn in Hell also broadcast on Epix beginning February 11, 2012. The first is a collection of filmed appearances at American colleges, while the sequel was shot at two Q&A shows held in Toronto and London. The third and fourth were filmed in Red Bank, New Jersey at the Count Basie Theater on Smith's 37th and 40th birthdays, respectively. The fifth was filmed in Austin, Texas at the Paramount Theater. The first two DVD sets were released by Sony Home Video, while the third was put out by the Weinstein Company. Smith appears with Marvel Comics guru Stan Lee in Marvel Then & Now: An Evening With Stan Lee and Joe Quesada, hosted by Kevin Smith. The film is similar in tone to the Evening with Kevin Smith series. Proceeds from the sale of the film benefit The Hero Initiative, a charitable organization that aids ill or aging comic book creators.
Smith's longest Q&A session took place April 2, 2005, at the Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, New Jersey. The sold-out event was over seven hours long, took place from 8 pm through 3 am (which due to daylight saving time, was actually 4 am). Following the Q&A, he opened Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash for a meet-and-greet with the numerous remaining audience members, which ended around 6:30 am. Smith then hopped on a plane and did another Q&A at the Raue Center For The Arts in Crystal Lake, Illinois, that night. Planned for two hours, it lasted just over five hours, ending a little after 1 am Central time.
On the Internet
On February 5, 2007, Smith and Scott Mosier began SModcast, a regular comedy podcast. SModcast has since spawned into a podcast network called the SModcast podcast network which began in 2010, its own digital radio station called SModcast Internet Radio (S.I.R) in 2011 and an internet television channel SModCo Internet Television (S.I.T.) in 2012
Smith has a website, The View Askewniverse, which opened in late 1995. He also has an online blog, "My Boring-Ass Life", the contents of which were published in a book by the same name. Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back's fictional website MoviePoopShoot.com became real in 2002. It became Quick Stop Entertainment and was the home of SModcast until it was sold and SModcast moved to a dedicated website SModcast.com, which also carries the other SModcast network podcasts in early 2010.
On June 4, 2012, Smith premiered his Hulu-exclusive weekly series Spoilers, described as an "anti-movie review" series, where Smith takes a group of people to a new movie and has them comment on what they've seen. Other segments on the show include interviews with celebrities, and the "Criterion Lounge", where Smith discusses a Criterion Collection movie available on DVD and the Hulu Plus service.
Smith owns and operates Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash in Red Bank, New Jersey, a comic book store largely dedicated to merchandise related to his films and comics. He purchased the original store in January 1997 for $30,000 USD, using the money he earned from Clerks. The current location is its second. The store was moved to a defunct ice cream parlor on Broad St. after Smith sold the Monmouth St. property. The New Jersey location is managed by Smith's long-time friend Walt Flanagan, who appears frequently in Smith's films. A second Secret Stash in the Westwood section of Los Angeles was opened in September 2004 and was managed by long-time associate Bryan Johnson, who has appeared in Smith's films as Steve-Dave. Smith had announced that he would close after his lease expired and Johnson wanted to resign, but eventually relocated to Laser Blazer, a DVD store in Los Angeles. In January 2009 the West Coast Store closed, leaving the east coast store as Smith's only operating store.
||This article lends undue weight to certain ideas, incidents, or controversies. (September 2013)|
2010 Southwest Airlines incident
|"What's the safety issue? . . . Am I going to explode, is that it, am I the dude in Monty Python?"|
On February 13, 2010, Kevin Smith was on board a full Southwest Airlines flight in Oakland bound for Burbank when he was asked to leave the plane, allegedly over their safety policy, which specifies space allocation and an armrests-must-be-down rule. According to Smith, he was able to put both armrests down in accordance with Southwest Airlines policy, and both passengers on either side did not object to his presence. There was also another passenger larger than Smith on the same plane (although Smith did not comment on this at the time, saying he didn't want to "Throw a fellow fatty under the bus"). Smith agreed to leave the flight after the employee told him the captain wanted him to leave. Smith was insulted by what he felt was humiliating treatment. After they exited the plane, he argued with the employee, trying to get a clear explanation for what had happened and who was responsible. He doubted that the captain had anything to do with the situation, and speculated it may have been one of the employees between the gate and the plane. After being booked on a later flight and being offered a $100 Southwest Airlines voucher, which he turned down, Smith lashed out at Southwest Airlines on his Twitter account, holding the organization responsible for the actions of the employees in question.
|"Is my dignity worth a hundred dollar voucher?"|
Another Southwest employee later found Smith, apologized to him and admitted he was treated wrongly. Southwest Airlines representatives later released two statements regarding the incident via their blog. In the first statement, Southwest claimed that Smith "has been known to (...) purchase two Southwest seats" and cited its "Customer of Size" policy which requires that customers who cannot put their armrests down purchase two seats. In his podcast, Smith stated that he regularly purchased two seats, and had done so the previous week, because he preferred not having to sit next to anyone, not due to his size. In releasing this statement, Southwest disclosed Smith's personal travel details without his permission. The first statement also claimed that the flight captain personally determined that Smith was too large to fly. In its second statement, Southwest contradicted this claim, stating that the captain had not singled out Smith.
Smith later released an entire episode of SModcast devoted to the subject, giving a lengthy description of the incident, in which he claimed that he had been able to lower the armrests completely and comfortably and claimed to have been repeatedly lied to by airline personnel. He also referred to the airline as the "Greyhound of the Air" and vowed to never fly the airline again.
In his podcast, Smith stated that on his return flight a large female passenger was told to ask him if it was all right that she was sitting next to an empty seat he had bought between them, and it was suggested by Southwest staffers that she may need to purchase an additional seat due to her size, even though she had been placed next to an already-purchased empty seat. Smith interviewed her on the following SModcast episode.
Smith also released 24 video statements on YouTube further describing the incident.
Cop Out controversy
On the January 17, 2011 episode of WTF with Marc Maron, Smith discussed his disappointment with working with Bruce Willis during the making of the film Cop Out. Smith stated that one of the reasons that he agreed to direct the film was because he wanted to work with Willis, but that Willis "wouldn't even sit for a fucking poster shoot" and that "were it not for Tracy [Morgan], I might have either killed myself, or someone else in the making of Cop Out."
A talent rep associated with the production of the film reported conflicts on set between Smith and Willis, saying of Smith, "He smokes way too much pot. He sat behind his monitor. He didn't interact with the actors. The actors felt they were on their own." Smith defended his use of marijuana while working, claiming "I dealt with every actor who wanted to be dealt with on that set" and pointed to the number of projects he worked on while making Cop Out to counter claims he was unproductive because of marijuana. Smith admitted in an interview that heavy marijuana-smoking had become an integral part of his work ethic after claiming that he watched actor Seth Rogen on the set of Zack and Miri Make a Porno use marijuana as a tool to become a more creative and productive worker, saying "The moment I start smoking, I start working.... That way, no one could ever take it away from you."
|“||Kevin Smith thinks critics should have had to pay to see "Cop Out." But Kev, then they would REALLY have hated it.||”|
In response to the critical drubbing his 2010 film Cop Out received, Smith lashed out at the community of film critics on his Twitter account saying, "Writing a nasty review for Cop Out is akin to bullying a retarded kid. All you’ve done is make fun of something that wasn't doing you any harm and wanted only to give some cats some fun laughs." Smith also implied on Twitter that he may charge critics for advance screenings of his films, a service which has typically been provided free; this subsequently ignited a strong response from some critics condemning his stance as "dishonest" and "disingenuous".
After the success of his first films, Smith lived in Los Angeles, though he disliked no longer being near his New Jersey friends. He dated actress Joey Lauren Adams, and declared his desire to marry her in Time magazine, but they began to grow apart after he spoke of staying in Los Angeles permanently and starting a life with her. When Smith's grandmother became ill, he returned to Red Bank and remained there, realizing that that was where he belonged. Smith and Adams' relationship was tested by their working together on Chasing Amy, the set of which saw a loud argument between the two. The two broke up in June 1997.
Smith is married to Jennifer Schwalbach Smith, whom he met while she was interviewing him for USA Today. They cohost the "Plus One" podcast. He photographed her for a nude pictorial in Playboy that consisted of photographs by various celebrities. Their daughter, Harley Quinn Smith, was born June 26, 1999, and was named after the character from the Batman comics. They live in the Hollywood Hills, in a house Smith purchased from longtime friend Ben Affleck in 2003.
Initially raised Catholic, Smith began have develop doubts about his beliefs in his early 20s, and came to see Catholic mass as "dry and lip-servicey." Seeking out advice, Smith spoke to a priest, who analogized faith to liquid filling a shot glass, and explained that the glass grows in size as a person grows older, and thus the same knowledge that satisfies a person as a child can be insufficient as an adult. Smith read extensively on Christianity, explored other religions, read the Biblical apocrypha, and tried joining a Pentecostal congregation. The thoughts and ideas he explored during this time formed the inspiration for his film Dogma, the beginning of which features characters using the shot glass metaphor used by the priest. Though Smith still regularly attended mass as late as 1998, he stated on "Back to the Well", a feature on the Clerks II documentary, that now he only goes to Mass on the day before he starts production of a movie, and the day before it premieres. He never smoked until his debut film, Clerks, in which he used the cigarettes as a prop, but did not inhale. He has said that prior to filming Clerks, he was a staunch non-smoker.[not in citation given]  He quit smoking cigarettes in 2008 after taking up smoking cannabis. Smith only began smoking marijuana at age 38 after working with Seth Rogen on Zack and Miri Make a Porno.
Smith came to prominence with the low-budget comedy Clerks (1994), in which he appeared as the character Silent Bob. His first several films were mostly set in his home state of New Jersey; and, while not strictly sequential, they frequently feature crossover plot elements, character references, and a shared canon described by fans as the "View Askewniverse"—named after his production company View Askew Productions, which he co-founded with Scott Mosier.
Smith appeared as himself in Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham while even voicing himself.
- Silent Bob Speaks (2005)
- My Boring Ass Life: The Uncomfortably Candid Diary of Kevin Smith (2007)
- Shootin' the Sh*t with Kevin Smith (2011)
- Tough Shit: Life Advice from a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good (2012)
- Jay and Silent Bob's Blueprints For Destroying Everything (2014)
- Chasing Dogma (with Duncan Fegredo, Oni Press, 1998-1999)
- Daredevil: Guardian Devil (with Joe Quesada, Marvel Comics, 1998–1999)
- Bluntman & Chronic (with Michael Avon Oeming and Neil Vokes, Image Comics, 2001)
- Green Arrow: Quiver (with Phil Hester, DC Comics, 2001–2002)
- Green Arrow: Sounds of Violence (with Phil Hester, DC Comics, 2002)
- Spider-Man/Black Cat: The Evil that Men Do (with Terry Dodson, Marvel Comics, 2002, 2005–2006)
- Daredevil/Bullseye: The Target (with Glenn Fabry, Marvel Comics, 2003)
- Batman: Cacophony (with Walt Flanagan, DC Comics, 2008–2009)
- Batman: The Widening Gyre (with Walt Flanagan, DC Comics, 2009–2010)
- Green Hornet (with Jonathan Lau, Dynamite Entertainment, 2010)
- The Bionic Man (with Jonathan Lau, Phil Hester, Dynamite Entertainment, 2011–2012)
- Batman '66 Meets the Green Hornet (with Ty Templeton, DC Comics/Dynamite Entertainment, 2014)
- Batman: Bellicosity (with Walt Flanagan, DC Comics, 2014)
- Trade paperback introductions
- Hitman: 10,000 Bullets (by Garth Ennis, DC Comics, 1996)
- Preacher: Until the End of the World (by Garth Ennis, Vertigo Comics, 1995)
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- Smith, Kevin (2012). Tough Sh*t: Life Advice from a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good. Gotham. p 3. Google Books.
- As stated in an interview on the Clerks 10th Anniversary DVD.
- Overstreet, Jeffrey. "A Warm & Fuzzy Kevin Smith?". Christianity Today. Archived from the original on April 13, 2007. Retrieved April 30, 2007.
- Cahillane, Kevin. "For the Stars of 'Clerks,' It's Take Two". The New York Times, July 16, 2006. Retrieved October 25, 2007. "Mr. Anderson's film career was a happy accident. While he and Mr. Smith graduated together in 1988 from Henry Hudson Regional High School in Highlands, they were not close until Mr. Anderson began to rent movies from the video store where Mr. Smith worked."
- Smith, Kevin. Interview by Robert K. Elder. The Film That Changed My Life. By Robert K. Elder. Chicago: Chicago Review Press, 2011. N. p 236. Print.
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- New York. October 24, 1994 http://books.google.com/books?id=8-MCAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA50&lpg=PA50&dq=register+dogs+clerks+kevin+smith&source=bl&ots=FRtXRs5qtD&sig=Eal4Vyp9rO7MvC9xyRi_dHgHARE&hl=en&ei=41sxTbDuIo74sAPV2PznBQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CBMQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false. Missing or empty
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As one of the hottest young stars in comedy, Seth Rogen has gone from scene-stealing supporting character to bankable leading man in just a few short years
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- Smith, Kevin (October 31, 2010). "Red State-ment". Silent Bob Speaks.
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- "Red State". Retrieved October 27, 2014.
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- "My Boring Ass Life » TUSK STARTS SHOOTING TODAY!". Retrieved October 27, 2014.
- "@ThatKevinSmith update". Retrieved October 27, 2014.
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- Kevin Jagernauth (September 30, 2014). "Horror Anthology “HOLIDAYS” gets “TUSK”, “STARRY EYES” filmmakers". Holidays. Retrieved October 27, 2014.
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- This Film Is Not Yet Rated. Director: Kirby Dick. 2006. IFC.
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- "Gimme an Oscar, Dammit!". Silentbobspeaks.com. Retrieved November 9, 2008.
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- "Then and Now DVD". Retrieved January 17, 2008.
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- Smodcast 106
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- Plus One, podcast, smodcast.com, retrieved April 2013
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- "Scott Mosier: God of All Producers". ViewAskew.com. Retrieved November 23, 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kevin Smith.|
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Kevin Smith|
- Smith's blog
- View Askew Productions
- Kevin Smith at the Internet Movie Database
- Kevin Smith explains what happened to his Superman movie
- Huffington Post blog
- Kevin Smith at the Comic Book DB
- Kevin Smith at AllMovie
(Daredevil Vol. 1)