Ben Stiller Won’t Do Just Anything for a Laugh

The June 25 issue of the New Yorker has a fascinating long-form profile on Ben Stiller written by Tad Friend. “Funny Is Money” uses the planning process for the upcoming Stiller-directed “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” film as a springboard to examine the comedian’s career.

It offers a candid look at the sausage-making process of studio filmmaking–“four quadrants” appeal and margin percentages. But it also breaks down Stiller, revealing him to both an obsessive worker and a prickly character put off by the gross-out humor he’s often called to do.