ED2013 Comedy ED2013 Interviews ED2013 Week2 Edition

The Real MacGuffins: Big in Israel (allegedly)

By | Published on Tuesday 13 August 2013

The Real Macguffins

We loved The Real MacGuffins’ show at Festival 2011, but then last summer, with those Olympic-style distractions, they were nowhere to be found. But now they are safely back  at Underbelly with a brand new show, ‘The Real MacGuffins Come Again’. We caught up with all three members of the group – Dan, Jim and Matt – for a good old fashioned chinwag.

CC: Welcome back to the Fringe! You took a year off in 2012 – what exactly were you doing?!
Dan: Last year we appeared in a few things on TV – actually I was in ‘Miranda’…
Jim: Dan likes to talk about that, I was in ‘Lee Nelson’s Well Funny People’.
Matt: Jim likes to talk about that.
Dan: And Matt was in ‘Embarrassing Bodies’.
Jim: But he doesn’t want to talk about that.
Matt: In the summer, we partnered with Channel Flip to film a series of 20 Olympics-based sketches ranging from the 50m halitosis qualifiers to the limp handshaking finals and the 110m cheating hurdles, all of which went viral…
Dan: In Israel. We have a big internet following there.
Jim: Last August we were also invited to perform at the Bush Theatre…
Dan: In Israel. We have a big comedy following there.
Jim: Not Israel – London’s prestigious Bush Theatre! Which was an honour.

CC: How does it feel to be back, did the year off help?
Jim: It feels great to be back – having a year off gave us more time to develop, experiment and create material for what we feel is our best show yet.
Matt: And it gave me a chance to save some money… especially as I’m getting married…
Jim: Yeah, yeah.
Dan: I got to travel. Went to Israel. Visited a lot of internet cafes.

CC: To the fools who didn’t see your shows in 2010 and 2011, how would you describe your comedy?
Dan: They’re not necessarily fools – just unlucky.
Jim: People can make mistakes – so don’t feel bad, just do everything you can not to make the same mistake again – we’re on at 5pm Underbelly Cowgate.
Matt: We would describe our comedy as big, silly and clever. We love word play, inventive ideas and utter stupidity.

CC: Tell us about ‘The Real MacGuffins Come Again’, how does it compare to the past shows?
Matt: It’s our most honest show – you see even more of us than ever before.
Dan: Well, you’ll see a lot more of Matt than you want to anyway.
Jim: It’s definitely our biggest, most ambitious show ever, and the most satisfying in the way the sketches are linked together. We’ve tied in a few surprises but we don’t want to give too much away.
Matt: We’ve even got a set.
Dan: We’ve got a whole range of sketches so if you’re a fan of Frankenstein, grammatical errors, Isambard Kingdom Brunel and computer games you’ll love this show.
Jim: I said don’t give too much away!

CC: The blurb says you’re ‘fitter, stronger and fatter’ this year. Which one of you is fitter, stronger and fatter?
Matt: Jim single-handedly built the set so he’s stronger.
Jim: Dan single-handedly ate while I built the set so he’s fatter.
Dan: And Matt single-handedly fitted himself into a suitcase.
Matt: You put me…
Dan: So he’s fitter.

CC: You raised some of your Fringe budget this year via an Indiegogo crowd-funding campaign. Why did you decide to do that? What does it involve?
Dan: That was Matt’s idea.
Matt: We floated ourselves as a company and sold shares in us. We decided it was a really good way not only to raise some much needed funds but also to raise awareness of our show. It was great that the Scotsman ran an article about it.
Jim: It was a lot of hard work though…
Dan: Yeah, Matt was exhausted. It really helps if you have a nerdy work-horse in your group.

CC: Was it successful? Would you recommend it to other performers?
Matt: Yes. We raised enough funds to pay for all our printing costs, director, rehearsal space and a lot of other things. Without the help we received we couldn’t have put together the show that we have.
Jim: We’re hugely grateful to all those that got involved with our campaign.
Dan: A big thank you to all our shareholders – your stock is rising.

CC: There’s talk of ‘projects in development’ for TV and radio – can you tell us anything more about that? What would you dream TV or radio project be?
Jim: That’s also one of the things we were able to focus on in 2012 – working with producers on TV and radio projects. They’re still ongoing so we can’t say too much. We don’t want to jinx anything.
Dan: My dream project would involve me and Mila Kunis and Audrey Tautou.
Matt: I’ve been asked to be in the next series of ‘Embarrassing Bodies’.

CC: We’re nearly at half-way point for this Festival – what have been the highlights and low points so far?
Matt: Sitting in the Abattoir bar relaxing with a post show drink by the fountain and someone running over to tell us how much he loved the show (thanks Tim!)
Jim: I nearly cut my finger off putting the finishing touches to the set. A particular low point for me, but it gave the Underbelly first aid team their first crisis of the Fringe, so possibly a highlight for them?
Dan: I’ve ripped two pairs of my jeans in the crotch area. That’s a low point.

CC: And other than ‘The Real MacGuffins Come Again’, any other tips for shows to see?
Jim: Well we all enjoyed George Ryegold ‘Adulterated’ the other night. Lovely material, deftly delivered. A great show.
Matt: Check out ‘McNeil And Pamphilon Go 8-bit’ too – it’s only on a few nights, but it’s lots of comics playing computer games and larking about – we had great fun guesting on it.
Dan: If you want something different I went to see ‘Tongue Fu’. A crazy late night mash up of spoken word, beat box, jazz and even Howard Marks turned up in a fez.

‘The Real MacGuffins Come Again’ performed at Underbelly Cowgate at Edinburgh Festival 2013.

LINKS: www.therealmacguffins.com

Photo: Rich Dyson

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