Taking Judd Apatow Seriously

How did a neurotic, self-lacerating stand-up comedian from Long Island conquer Hollywood? He earned it

Gavin Bond

Portrait of Seth Rogen, Judd Apatow, and Adam Sandler.

Judd Apatow is working much harder on this article than I am. He wants to meet at 8 a.m., suggests six different events I can accompany him to and sends me more e-mails checking on my progress than my editor does. The two-minute video interview that I promised TIME.com turns into Apatow taking my camera, directing me for 15 minutes and editing it himself. It's not entirely surprising — after all, I'm lazy — but it helps explain how Apatow has become the most influential person making comedy in Hollywood. Partly it's that he's funny. But mostly it's that...

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