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Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 11/ 2/2007

Catching Up With... Andy Dick

By Liz Kelly

Andy Dick. (Reuters)
To download a 45-minute MP3 of my entire interview with Andy Dick, right click here and save to your computer.

Andy Dick is tired of the negative publicity, the TMZ cameras, celebrity feuds and -- for now -- drinking. Oh, and he's got something to say to Jon Lovitz. We'll get to that in a sec.

When I talked to Dick on Wednesday afternoon he was refreshingly upbeat. Driven. Defiant. Sober. And, well, domestic. In fact, he interrupted our phone conversation to instruct a friend on the proper way to re-heat lasagna ("We don't want it to get all crispy") for his roommate, 19-year-old son Lucas. So that was unexpected and quaint. As Dick himself said, a Rachael Ray moment.

What wasn't surprising was Dick's trademark stream-of-consciousness high-speed download. He's a guy with a lot to say and, if you ask him, a lot more than lasagna on his plate. (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)

There's his new DVD release, "Danny Roane: First Time Director," his talk show for Howard Stern's Sirius radio channel and his upcoming foray into the world of reality TV for VH1. That's not even including his still only months-old sobriety, a move out of L.A. ("I live a few blocks away from Area now, the club that's always on 'Entourage'") to be closer to his kids (he has two more, ages 13 and 10) and, well, his beef with Jon Lovitz.

About the Jon Lovitz thing -- in July, the "SNL" alum said he assaulted Dick at a comedy club and publicly accused Dick of having a hand in the death of comedian Phil Hartman and his wife and of putting a hex on his (Lovitz's) career. Read the original Page Six item here.

Not so, says Dick. In fact, in this audio clip from our interview, Dick says he had nothing to do with Hartman's death and dismisses Lovitz as an "unhappy, sad, overweight man" who, essentially, needs to move on. Though, Dick hastens to add, he would put a hex on Lovitz at this point if he could.

Much more after the jump...

Although he'd gotten his start at with Chicago's Second City improv troupe, Dick landed squarely on the primetime dial in 1995 on the sitcom "News Radio." Along with Phil Hartman, Dick quickly made the show a must watch.

Andy Dick gets his licks in on 'Star Trek's' Nichelle Nichols as William Shatner looks on. (Comedy Central)

Then, after the show wrapped in 1999, came the ups and downs. Dick's career milestones (his own MTV show, forays on to the silver screen and a second primetime sitcom) were often eclipsed by Dick's scene-stealing private life. Car accidents, drug possession charges, rehab, the face-licking thing, rehab, the Ivanka Trump episode, rehab, and -- most recently -- an August citation for urinating on a Columbus, Ohio sidewalk.

Dick's name will often elicit groans from the average consumer of celebrity gossip. An August posting on Internet gossip powerhouse drew comments ranging from "Andy who?" to "Insofar as train wrecks go, this untalented dweeb outraces Paris/Britney/Llindsay/Chynna?Bobby Trendy... COMBINED." Ouch.

In fact, so predictably unpredictable is Dick that one sportswriter recently invoked his name to describe the unreliable performance of a sports team, calling the Bears the "Andy Dick of the NFL."

When asked how he felt about his name being used as shorthand for instability, Dick said, "When my name becomes an adjective, then you know I've actually done that thing I've set out to do, become a household name."

And now Dick wants to cut out the middleman --, People, Us and the Web's ever-expanding swarm of bloggers -- to show that there's more to him than a face-licking fearlessly drunk dynamo we have come to associate with his name.

"Roane," Dick's first attempt at directing a feature length film, is a mockumentary chronicling the trials of a newly-sober actor directing his first movie who, along the way, becomes not so sober anymore. A construct that Dick didn't have to look too far to conjure up. After all, it's his life. And Dick candidly admits that he slipped -- often -- while filming.

But, says Dick, he realized while editing that the movie would likely have been just as good, if not better, if he'd remained sober. And that is Dick's takeaway from this experience: He doesn't need to be loaded to be funny.

"I'm better sober and people tell me that and I've gotta listen to them," said Dick. "I may be having a little more fun, but maybe the product suffered."

The actor turned director dismisses one review warning that only Andy Dick fans will like "Danny Roane." In fact, Dick says, hardcore fans may not like his directorial debut because they know he can do better. "And I will," he says.

And we want to believe him, this creative guy bursting with ideas and opportunity. He may well be the comedic doppelganger of Robert Downey Jr. -- one who keeps fighting his way back to the spotlight only to trip himself up again and again. Here's to hoping that, like Downey, he figures out how to steady himself.

To download a 45-minute MP3 of my entire interview with Andy Dick, right click here and save to your computer. Then listen on your desktop or load on your iPod. (Warning: It jumps right in to what sounds like a cooking show.)

By Liz Kelly  | November 2, 2007; 10:43 AM ET
Categories:  Catching Up With..., Celebrities  
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I don't know... downloading a 45-minute interview with Andy Dick sounds like a bad idea somehow.

Not to mention 45 minutes of my life that I'll never get back.

Posted by: byoolin | November 2, 2007 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Mentally, I changed Andy's first name to
"Eat A" a long time ago.

Posted by: 23112 | November 2, 2007 12:21 PM | Report abuse

He can be funny sometimes, mostly he's meh.

Posted by: Bored @ work | November 2, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

I would have maybe skimmed a print interview, but I gotta agree with byoolin, much as I love our Liz 45 minutes is way too long to listen to The Dick.

Posted by: Juicy | November 2, 2007 1:38 PM | Report abuse

I almost clicked on that link, but then I got nauseous and decided I better not.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 2, 2007 1:49 PM | Report abuse

SNORE. Andy Dick is the worst. No idea why Liz wanted to interview him. He is an obnoxious nobody. I guarantee you NO ONE will want to spend 45 minutes listening to this interview, even if it was given by a usually spot-on celebritologist.

Posted by: Mariella | November 2, 2007 1:51 PM | Report abuse

If I were Mister Liz, I'd be furious that my wife was seen out and about with another Dick.

Posted by: Mister Methane | November 2, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Man, oh man, what a (dime)bag that guy is.

Posted by: proxl | November 2, 2007 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Mister Methane...get off the dick talk already...

Posted by: Anonymous | November 2, 2007 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Wasn't he on the old Ben Stiller show? That show was hilarious.

Posted by: POS | November 2, 2007 2:21 PM | Report abuse

He was on the hilarious Ben Stiller Show! That and NewRadio is why I still give him a pass to this day. I guess he'll have to insult me or my family before I totally write him off.

Posted by: Loyal to a fault | November 2, 2007 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Andy Dick? Really?? I read the headline for the blog entry -- "Catching up with... Andy Dick" and all I thought was "Why?".

Posted by: Meh... | November 2, 2007 2:47 PM | Report abuse

I guess with a last name "Dick" your life would be trainwreck.

Posted by: Lisa1 | November 2, 2007 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Ted. He's dead. And the hobbits and the gnomes, they're dancing to and fro
They have to keep the plus-two sword from the chaotic evil thief lord
Now we're rockin', now we're really rockin'
Now we're really really really really really rockin'

Posted by: M. Brock | November 2, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Andy who?

Posted by: Adam in DC | November 2, 2007 4:13 PM | Report abuse

I listened to the whole 45 minutes. I think more of us should listen as it shows a very insecure person who still talks about how wonderful alcohol makes him feel although he is sober now. He is like all celebrities in that they want to talk about themselves. Liz played the part of a therapist during the interview. I know most people just like to listen to a sound bites and can't focus on anything longer. I thought Liz did an excellent job of actually giving us a taste of what drives a celebrity. Would you all have listened to 45 minutes of Brittney Spears? I don't thinks Brittney could think of more than 2 or 3 sentences to say. I thought the interview gave us a very good insight.

Posted by: Falls Church | November 2, 2007 11:07 PM | Report abuse

If I'm going to expend the time to listen to the whole 45 minutes, I demand a pony.

Posted by: Thor | November 3, 2007 3:05 AM | Report abuse

If he doesn't want to be bashed in the press, then he should stop acting like such a... well... a dick. He is forever being obnoxious and annoying and very not funny. I would enjoy him much more if he just became a recluse living off of his royalties from News Radio and we never heard from him again.

Posted by: fft5305 | November 5, 2007 12:23 PM | Report abuse

I think comparing A. Dick to Robert Downey, Jr. is a huge stretch. Sure both have had substance abuse issues but that's where the comparison should end. Robert Downey Jr. is one his generation's greatest actors. He is talented and certainly has mastered his craft, drunk or sober. Andy Dick on the other hand, is marginally talented. He is more camp than hilarious and I tend to think the facelicking stunts, etc would not happen if he were not drunk out of his mind.

Posted by: plamar1031 | November 6, 2007 3:15 PM | Report abuse

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