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5 Questions with Tig Notaro

The documentary Tig opened Hot Docs this year, and we were extremely lucky to get a chance to talk with subject and comedian Tig Notaro. The film reveals quite a lot about the private comedian enduring the year from hell. At the same time, another film about Notaro, which focuses more on her stand-up routine, played to great acclaim at SXSW, before coming to American television. The film Tig streams on Netflix Canada, so it is recommended to keep watch for the other one, but definitely to start by watching this documentary.

Scene Creek: Both films work well together as companion pieces.

Tig Notaro: You know, Knock Knock, It’s Tig Notaro was a passion project of mine for years, it was a tour I had done several times, and I had hoped to capture on TV or film or something. So I was just comfortable to be in that light. And then this was my friend Kristina Goolsby’s idea to make this documentary about my life, and you know, I was open to it, and when it got going, I realized, you know, life kind of swings back and forth, and I was a little horrified to be sharing such personal stuff, as it was unfolding.

I’ve obviously shared personal things after they’ve happened, but this was as it was happening. It’s obviously harder to share a documentary about my life, but it’s obviously something that I was devoted to the project and I wanted to make the best possible film, and I wanted to commit to what I had committed to, and now that it’s done, I’m thrilled, and I think the filmmakers did a tremendous job, and I’m so proud of both, you know, I’m in this really sweet spot, and if there’s somebody that doesn’t like it, then we have different taste. The filmmakers have executed nicely.

Scene Creek: What do you expect from a Toronto crowd?

Tig Notaro: Gosh, I’ve been coming to Toronto you know, over the years, and they’ve always been so supportive. It’s nice to go to another country, even if it’s just Canada, but it’s nice to cross a border and just “ah! This feels comfortable I feel right at home”.

Scene Creek: How do you feel about Q & A’s?

Tig Notaro: I love doing Q & A’s. I feel that the support that people give…I love going to the screenings and talking to people, like it turns into a standup show as well because it becomes very interactive.

Scene Creek: Are you watching them watch the movie as well?

Tig Notaro: Yeah! I mean I’ll glance around a little bit, yeah, for sure. It’s interesting to hear people laugh and even to hear them crying, it’s the roller coaster of emotion.

Scene Creek: Do you work that into your set sometimes?

Tig Notaro: Yeah, you know it’s nice to just take a beat or a breath and deliver there’s just maybe a part of a joke that’s not funny and just let it be there and hit ’em with a punchline.

Tig is now available for streaming exclusively on Netflix Canada.