Bill Burr Got ‘Mandalorian’ Part By Dissing ‘Star Wars’ on Podcasts

Making fun of ‘Star Wars’ fans? Burr was only doing his comedy job
Bill Burr Got ‘Mandalorian’ Part By Dissing ‘Star Wars’ on Podcasts

Conan O’Brien called out Bill Burr for always making fun of the Star Wars movie a few years back, but the comic denied the blanket accusation. “I only did it when it came out, and I saw a long line of people looking like they were going to enjoy themselves,” Burr said. “I did my comedy job, (which) was I made fun of them, and I tried to make them feel stupid.”

But those joy-killing jabs didn’t squelch Burr’s chances of landing a job in the Star Wars universe. In fact, those insults probably got him the gig. In a new Wired autocomplete interview in which he answers the internet’s most searched questions about himself, Burr reveals how he landed the role of Migs Mayfeld in The Mandalorian.

A few years back, the comic met Jon Favreau at a mutual friend’s birthday party, and the director suggested that there might be a good part for Burr in an upcoming series set in the Star Wars universe. That prompted a confession — Burr had used Star Wars as a punchline for years. “Not in a malicious way,” he said. “I just see people really enjoying something, and I just know, well, that’s an easy hit. If I make fun of it, I can really just watch them get upset, and you know, it fills up my day for whatever reason.”

Favreau protested that he’d heard all jokes on Burr’s podcast. “I think it’s hilarious,” Favreau said. “And I think your fans would think it was funny if you were on this show.”

Burr’s wife agreed that landing a role on The Mandalorian would be a good idea. “By then, my better half Nia was kicking me under the table, and I was like, ‘All right, yeah, let’s do it. Let’s do it.’”

Showing up on set didn’t exactly change Burr’s mind about the ridiculousness of sci-fi fantasy. “I get down there, and the first scene I’m doing, I’m in a spaceship and I’m the only guy that looks like a person,” he said. “Everybody else has all this crazy makeup on, and I’m sitting in there and I literally feel like I’m in The Muppets Take Manhattan."

Burr was about to kick into his reflex ridicule mode when rehearsals began. “The actors were so amazing,” he explained. “Immediately, that all went away. I’m like, ‘Oh my god, I’m gonna get my ass kicked in this.’ And I was totally locked in, and I ended up having a great time.”

Later, Favreau showed Burr a trailer for The Mandalorian’s first season and the comedian was gobsmacked. “My jaw was on the ground because it was like a spaghetti Western, and we looked like Clint Eastwood was doing Star Wars,” he gushed. “I was like, ‘Oh my god, I can’t believe I almost stuck my foot in my mouth and didn’t get in this. And it’s one of my favorite things I’ve ever done in my career.”

And as for his old pop-culture nemeses? “I will say Star Wars fans are cool as hell.”


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