Zach Braff

July 17, 2014

I AM Zach Braff. Ask Me Anything. (About Rampart.)

I was on Scrubs. I made Garden State. I played a monkey in one Disney Movie and a Chicken in another. I haven't made a movie in 10 years. I finally have. It comes out this weekend. It's called "Wish I Was Here." I sometimes look at /Gonewild Ask me anything...

In Garden State, your character says: "It's really amazing how much of my life has been determined by a quarter-inch piece of plastic." What has been the quarter-inch piece of plastic in your life?

My parents divorce at a young age. I was shocked by it and it truly caused life-long pain that I'll always deal with.

I would like to thank you and the wonderful crew of Scrubs for helping me through so much growing up. You guys are the best.

What is your most embarrassing/funny on set experience?

P.S. Do you and Donald cruise around on Sasha and Black Sasha together?

Bill secretly put a "TV DOC" license plate on my car. I didn't notice it for a few days. Humiliating.

Thanks so much for replying. You are my all time favorite actor/director/writer. I planned this AMA since you announced it. I set four alarms to remind me and typed out my question yesterday, so I could paste it. Keep up all your amazing work. It is inspirational to everyone.

Wow. Thank you so much.

What is your most embarrassing on set experience?

Season 9....

This is fucked up. But funny.

Hey Zach! What does Donald Faison likes more, weed or animating Legos?

Donald is now obssessed with Golf. So I thing it goes: Weed, Golf, animating Legos. Here's a link to one of his movies:

Donald prefers caddying to playing though, doesn't he?

You can't tell because of the bag, but his cock actually goes all the way to the ground.

What's your favorite place to take Donald Faison out to dinner?

My cock.

Hey Zach! Just a out of context question, what do you think about tattoos and do you ever want one?

Yes. Want one. Still deciding between Donald's face on my balls or Donalds balls on my face.

Why not both?

Someone please put that MEME of that little girl saying why not both here.

Does Donald Faison know you're doing this AMA? If so, how long do you expect it to take for him to show up?

He doesn't know how to use Reddit. Too baked.

How often do you smoke with him?

I don't smoke that much now. Way too overwhelmed with 8 shows a week on Broadway and releasing my film. But I go through waves where I enjoy God's Lettuce quite a bit.

Hey Zach thanks for doing this AMA. What's your favorite cereal?

Life. Both flavors.

Thank you for doing this! I’ve always been curious as to how you felt about the Zach Braff quotes that came out of 4chan a few years ago. Were you offended or did you find them stupid and/or humorous?

Thought it was offensive. Not to me personally, just the jokes were in bad taste. But I can't control the interwebs. Thanks, Al Gore.

How did you like being in Amsterdam? Any chance of you coming back?

I was too high to remember anything. So I need to.

What is one show you would like brought back?

"The Comeback" with Lisa Kudrow. And they're bringing it back. Also "Project Greenlight" and they're bringing that back!

what's your favorite alcoholic beverage?

Sorry. Sit down. I hate appletinis. Usuallly drink Sierra Nevada Pale Ale or Kettle Soda.

Have you and Donald Faison ever had a romantic relationship? You can't fool us...

It's not gay if it's just the tip.

Hi Zach, Do you pump iron / exercise? What do you do to stay fit and will you be back to San Diego Comic Con?

Loved Comic Con and I will come back. We shot a scene for Wish I Was Here there. Josh Gad and Ashley Greene are Cosplayers. Won't make it this year as I'm doing Bullets Over Broadway 8 shows a week in NYC.

Hi Zach, Do you pump iron / exercise? What do you do to stay fit and will you be back to San Diego Comic Con?

By the way this question is the ultimate non-sequitur.

Hi Zach!

Are you Superman?

Wait for it........ I'm no Superman. (P.s. Have you ever heard the full song? Lazlo Bane. It's quite good. The music video was one of the first things I directed...)

Wait for it........ I'm no Superman. (P.s. Have you ever heard the full song? Lazlo Bane. It's quite good. The music video was one of the first things I directed...)

By the way, I once directed a Gavin Degraw video that was pretty cool and starred Jamie King (who is the prettiest). Donald Faison cameo of course... Here it is:

[No question]

Off topic, and it's Reddit so I'm sure you've all seen it. But this is the funniest thing I've seen today:

Does she say, "I want white dick?" This is amazing.

She does. And it's glorious. I'm playing this video for everyone that walks into the room while I'm doing this ama.

I'm now afraid to get gassed at the dentist. Thanks, Zach

I once went to a dentist who told me I needed a root canal. I said, "I hope you've got some good drugs." He said, "Do you really wanna go under with me in the room? You'll wake up and be like 'Doctor, why does my ass hurt?" - I changed dentists. True story.

was the Janitor really supposed to be a figment of JD's imagination at first?

That was Bill's plan in season 1. But Neil was too funny. And when we became a hit, he had to branch him out.

What's happened to Rowdy? (The fake dog) I sincerely hope either you or Donald has him in your house somewhere.

I thought i was going to be able to keep Rowdy and then Disney (who owns the show) took him. They let me borrow him to put him in the background of a shot in Wish I Was Here. So look for him. It's like "Where's Waldo..."

Poor Rowdy. I hope he isn't sitting lonely in a warehouse somewhere gathering dust. And moths. Taxidermy really tends to attract moths. And now I've made myself sad.

I picture him in a giant warehouse of Disney props like the warehouse at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark.

He's chillin' with Rosebud.


Hey Zach, I'm having a bad day. What do you do when you have a bad day?

Listen to music that will make me feel happy. Call someone who can call me out on my bullshit. Spoon my dog. Clear the chamber.


Why not both?

Clear the chamber means what it means, right?

Edit: Zach Braff his own self has cleared it up: it's jerking off. I thought it might be unloading a suicide firearm, other people thought it might be hitting a bong, taking a shit, or mom's spaghetti. All good guesses but we got our closure.

It French for "empty one's load" aka ejaculate into a tissue.

Hi Zach! Thanks so much for doing an AMA. What's the best advice you could give an 18 year old who has no idea what to do with their future?

EXPLORE! Read, watch movies, travel, take classes. You can't discover what you love if you don't look.

Did you ever see someone you know in Gonewild?

No. But I can't recognize people by their assholes. Can you?

Does Harry Styles smell as good as I think?

Like a unicorns's queef.

What's the dumbest joke on Scrubs that made you laugh?

The scrubs short shorts the janitors wife made me with her limited fingers. Giggling now as I type this.


This is so funny. Haven't seen this in so long. This is what the Scrubs set was like. Laughed so hard everyday.

How do you feel about the way the Obama administration has worked out? I ask because I remember you were an avid supporter in 2008 before he was elected, even doing some speeches on it if I remember rightly. Do you feel let down or are you happy with how he's spent his time in office?

Huge fan by the way. Loved Garden State, The High Cost of Living and The Ex.

EDIT: Also extremely hyped for WIWH!

First of all, no one loves THE EX, but thanks for lying. I don't know how someone (anyone in either party) can be an effective President with this deadlocked congress. He's by no means been perfect. But I think he is a good man doing his best in a country that is gridlocked in opposing passions.

When people see you on the street, what do they recognize you from the most?

Scrubs or Garden State.

What was your favorite thing that Dr. Cox said to you on Scrubs?

Either this guy has a lightbulb in his ass or his colon has a really good idea.

hey Zach, just one question, will you love me?

Yes. I do.

What's the best part about being famous? What is the worst? If you could have the same level of monetary\prestige success without being famous would you take it?

Best. Everywhere you go in public people are nice to you. Worst: Anonymously on the internet, people say and write horrible things about and to you:

What was the most difficult scene to film in your career. Whether you are the one acting it or directing?

The emotional scenes in "Wish I Was Here" were the hardest things I've acted in and directed.

Hey Zach what was your favorite part about filming Wish I was Here?

Directing Mandy Patinkin. He is one of my all time favorite actors.

Do you and Donald have a favorite position?


How is rampart?

Finally a question about Rampart!

What do you think of Children's Hospital? It sort of reminds me of scrubs, just raunchier. Thanks for the AMA, love your work!

Never seen it. But they used to shoot in our old abandoned hospital until the owners tore it down.

Taran Killam is a star on SNL, and had some appearances on Scrubs, as well as many other popular shows. Was he always that funny on and off the show as he is today?

That guy is so talented. Talk about speaking shit into existence, he was saying the whole time on Scrubs, "One day I'm gonna be on SNL..." It was like his mantra. And he made it happen. And he's the best on there right now I think.

Hi Zach,

Thanks so much for taking the time to do this AMA! I'm Alec, and I've been a fan of your creative style for a long time, and one of the most important elements of it for me has been your music selection. You've always been able to find a song that fits a scene so perfectly, it feels as if the music plays a character as well (Hell, sometimes it did on Scrubs - Looking at you, Colin Hay!) I made sure to pledge enough to Wish I Was Here's Kickstarter that I could get your playlist updates! With that in mind, I have a couple questions.

  1. Do you build a scene, and then choose a song to match it, or do you go in with a song in mind, and build a scene around it (or some other method)?

  2. How do you go about finding music you use?

  3. What is on your personal playlist right now? Which artists do you feel haven't yet found the audience they deserve?

  4. Do you have any advice for someone interested in music supervision?

  5. I'd love to hear a story or two about how you created/curated the soundtrack for Wish I Was Here!

  6. This one is a stretch: (deep breaths, Alec) I do a college radio show on KXLU 88.9 FM called "A Fistful Of Vinyl". We're volunteers (100% DIY). Would you ever want to come hang out with us one night, and chat about music things on air? I would totally treat you to In N Out. I know you get all kinds of attention from people bigger than we are, but I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I didn't ask.

Thanks so much for your time, Zach!

I build a GIANT playlist of ideas and then me and my editor, Myron Kerstein, just keep trying songs in different places until we get goosebumps. We have this inside joke with each other where we point to the hair on our arms standing up when the imagery and music choice have clearly clicked and we're feeling something on a visceral level. You can try your favorite song in the world and it won't work. It's completely trial and error.

Is Hooch still crazy?

Hooch is out of his fucking mind.

Hi Zach. You received a lot of criticism from the internet at large about your crowdfunding for your new movie. We both know you can't really take that kind of criticism seriously and it's just the internet. The people that helped genuinely wanted to see you make a movie in your vision, which I think everyone knows can't really be done with a studio unless you are like Hollywood royalty or an Illuminati or something.

ANYWAY... how do you deal with criticism, especially large-scale criticism, as a celebrity? Does it genuinely affect you, or have you learned to block it out by now? Thanks!

Here's a great article where I talk about all the Kickstarter stuff. I can take criticism if it's smart and articulates a point. But so much on the web is so angry and hateful. I guess I ignite passions in people both positive and negative. Maybe that's a good thing.

My wife and I are big fans of Zach and "Wish I Was Here" was our first big Kickstarter project donation. We were super excited to go to Chicago for a premiere, and then super disappointed all of the domestic premieres were held on Mondays...

I'm so sorry to have disappointed you. As I'm doing a Broadway show 8 shows a week, Monday night is my only night off.

I was a backer at a level where I got to see the film back in June. The movie is awesome and so was Zach and his brother after the movie with their Q&A. I am so glad that he got to make the movie the way he wanted.

Thank you so much.

How much are you affected by the critical reception your projects receive?

My ego wants everyone to like my art. But I know that's not realistic. So I just hope that enough people like what I do so I can keep making stuff. Otherwise I'll just go on, find a wife and settle down.

Why not

Why not both?

Fuck, Marry, Kill?

Donald Faison, Queen Elizabeth II, and The Gopher from Caddy Shack?

Fuck them all.

First, you're easily the funniest account I follow on twitter. Second, toilet paper.. over or under?

thanks, Over. Under people are savages and must be ended.

Hey Zach! I met you at the stagedoor of Bullets Over a Broadway when it was in previews. You were fantastic and kind enough to take a picture and I will always appreciate it.

So, I've been wondering:

What's it like managing your career as broadway performer in which you have 8 performances per week while also promoting Wish I Was Here? I'm a theatrical actor who loves film-making, and I'm amazed at how well you've been able to make time to simultaneously promote Wish I Was Here, perform on Broadway, and maintain a sex-healthy relationship with Donald Faison.

IM SOOOOOOOOOO TIRED! I don't recommend ever doing both at the same time. But Focus chose to release WIWH this summer and I had already committed to the play. It's insanity, but I'm so grateful for both things.

Do you care that the rotten tomatoes rating for 'Wish I Was Here' is so low?

I don't think I'm much of a critics darling. Never really have been. Wasn't expecting it. As long as my fans go, I'm happy. I made this for people who like what I do.

Love your work and watched the screening with a few friends who funded the kickstarter gig.

Watching it again this Sunday with the Mrs.! Amazing work, much love from Lexington, NC!

What's your favorite cocktail?

Thank so much.

Hey Zach !

I've been looking forward to WIWH for a while but live in England and was just wondering if there are any plans for a release over here ?

Also you are an incredibly awesome dude.

September!!!!! I'm coming to you. Had to wait until I have a break from the play.

Favourite song of all time? Favourite song on the Wish I Was Here soundtrack?

Favorite song on the new soundtrack is the collaboration between Coldplay and Cat Power. It's the title track of the movie and I pretty much just listen to it on a loop. Chris Martin saw the movie, loved it. Got together with the band and they wrote the song. Cat Power saw the movie, loved it, said she'd sing it. Chris sings harmonies. I love it.

How would you have wanted scrubs to end?

Would have been funny if we recreated the Sopranos ending shot for shot, line for line, with our characters.

Hey Zach, I saw Wish I Was Here (kickstarter backers represent) and thought it was seriously amazing, possibly the best thing you've ever done, so thank you for putting my funding to extraordinary use.

Just a couple of questions about the film:

Again, it was a truly extraordinary film, so thank you.

Thank you so much. I'll focus on the women part. I asked Kate and Ashley (as I did with Natalie) not to wear make-up or do their hair. Obviousy, if they have a blemish or whatever. But they're such pretty women, I wanted them to look like normal people. I think very often people in movies don't look like normal people, they look like movie stars. All 3 women are phenomenal actresses, but it order to see that you have to strip away all that glam bullshit. I like to think the women in my films are the strongest characters. The men are often lost and narcisistic and the women are the sources of light bringing them out of the darkness. Maybe it's just my continuing fantasy of being saved by a great woman.

I took slack for Natalie being a "manic-pixie", i never really got that. Sorry if I created a trope. But I like funny, silly, smart, high energy women - I guess if I have a type it's that. So that's who I wrote...

Since you browse /r/gonewild so often, have you ever thought of posting there?

All the time:

You have such a great smile.


So I just went on your profile and noticed:

MODERATOR OF /r/GeriatricPorn /r/CODCIRCLEJERK /r/Clownporn /r/handporn /r/ShemalePorn /r/grandmasgonewild /r/MILFporn /r/ParodyPorn /r/GermanDungeonPorn

When did you decide to be more open about this part of your life?

People add me as a moderator to all that shit. I've never clicked on any of it. I have to ask the mods how to turn that off...

Hi, Zach!

What is it about WIWH that made it so personal for you? I mean, it seemed like a movie you really, really wanted to make--so much so that you pushed it and pushed it until it finally happened. What makes this project different from other projects, to paraphrase the Passover Seder?

It's about my family, spirituality, love. I don't believe in an afterlife, so it's about "How long am i allowed to go after my dream before I have to give up..." It's very personal to me.

Hi Zach, thanks for doing the AMA.

How was it working with the cast and crew of Arrested Development?

I love that show. The scene I did where I'm exposed as a never-nude with David Cross was one of the funniest days of shooting ever. He and I riffed so much shit about being a never-nude and jean shorts that didn't make the cut. He is hilarious.

How did Method Man end up having a part Garden State? Are you a fan of Wu-Tang?

My producer had produced "How High". So she asked him and he said yes. He was hilarious and really nice. To this day I have no idea if he's seen the movie.

Do you prefer creamy or crunchy peanut butter? Be honest.


Hi Zach, would you ever consider growing a full beard? I think it would look pretty badass!


The one i grew for "High Cost Of Living" is about as thick as I can muster...

Hey Zach, my question is about the "Wish-I-Was-Here-Thank-You-Screening". I paid 30$ on your Kickstarter campaign, with the promise that I will be able to see the film online. As I live in europe, the screening was geoblocked in my region. I don't understand that you talked about "those who had problems with the screening" in your mail, because the vhx-team told me that there weren't any problems with the stream, but that the publisher (you?) didn't allow them to show the movie in europe. Why wasn't this issue communicated before the screening or even before the backing itself. Will there be another screening, or what can I await for the money I have paid? Thanks in advance for your response!

I'm so, so, sorry about that. I want to deliver on my promises to everyone and we are franticly figuring out a solution. To be honest, streaming content globally and geoblocking and each individual foreign country's rules for distribution are a little over my head. And so that one got away from me and caught me by surprise. But rest assured, I will make it right. I will not let you down. Just give me a little time to launch the movie in USA and Canada and then all of my attention will turn to International for August and September. I can't sleep at night if I've let even one of my Backers down for a spilt second, so trust that I'm on it and will do my best to not only fulfill but go above and beyond for each and every one of you. There was some miscommunication, but the buck stops at me. I will make it right. Standby.

What's up with you and The Shins?

I just really like the band. Nothing up, they just give me the feels.


Um... There is no way this story is true. We've all had our shitty days, but I can honestly say I have never, would never talk to a stranger like that. Maybe it was Dax Shepard. People PM so much insanity that I can't even look it at them anymore. P.S. Don't speak to me.

What's your favorite book?

The Game of Thrones pop up book my Mom just bought me:

[No question]

Ok Friends, thats 2 hours and 12 minutes. I'll come back later and answer more but now I have to go wash myself. Please check out "Wish I Was Here" this weekend.

If you've liked my other stuff I promise you will like it. If you haven't, maybe give it a try... this might be the one that converts you. I'd like to end this AMA like I end all things in my life; with a brief message from Hooch:

This interview was transcribed from an "ask me anything" question and answer session with Zach Braff conducted on Reddit on 2014-07-17. The Reddit AMA can be found here.