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Pauly Shore on being Oscar joke: ‘Human beings have feelings’


Pauly Shore is ready for his own comeback following his “Encino Man” co-stars Brendan Fraser and Ke Huy Quan’s Oscar triumphs.

The ’90s comedy star watched Sunday as Fraser, 54, won Best Actor and Quan, 51, won Best Supporting Actor.

But then host Jimmy Kimmel joked: “Two actors from ‘Encino Man’ are nominated for Oscars. What an incredible night this must be for the two of you and what a difficult night it must be for Pauly Shore.”

Shore said the pot-shot was really no different than how people treated him in the past.

“We love to hate people when they’re on top. People wanted to smash me down and they did,” Shore, 55, told Page Six. “I was always nice to everyone, always cool, I put my heart into my all my films.

“You’re buying and selling a human being,” he added of being a celebrity. “Human beings have feelings, it’s not like selling real estate.”

Shore said he’s thrilled for his old co-stars.

Ke Huy Quan and Brendan Fraser at the 2023 Oscars
Old “Encino Man” co-stars Ke Huy Quan and Brendan Fraser celebrate after winning Oscars Sunday.
Getty Images

“It’s a big deal, I’m happy for these guys,” he said. “We did a movie together years ago and I’m glad that people still talk about it 30 years later. It’s crazy.”

But now he’s ready for his own return to the cultural conversation.

“I do truly miss acting and I miss being on set … hopefully it happens … it’s about just dreaming and hoping.”

He added “People are always like, ‘We want you back!’”

Pauly Shore and Brendan Fraser in "Encino Man."
Fraser (left) and Shore in 1992’s “Encino Man.”
©Buena Vista Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection

At 17, Shore graduated from high school in LA and became a stand-up comedian, before joining MTV as a VJ and appearing in movies like “Jury Duty” and “Bio Dome.”

“The movies I did stand the test of time — even ‘Jury Duty!’” Shore said. “All my movies had heart, they all had a message.”

He’s currently touring his one-man show, “Stick with The Dancing: Stories from My Childhood” — all about growing up in the late 1970s and ’80s.

Oscar winners Fraser and Quan in "Encino Man," with Pauly Shore and Sean Astin looking on.
Oscar winners Fraser and Quan in “Encino Man,” with Pauly Shore and Sean Astin looking on.

His mom, Mitzi Shore, was co-founder of Hollywood’s iconic Comedy Store where some of comedy’s biggest stars, including Jay Leno, Robin Williams and David Letterman, got their big breaks. 

The title is something his mom told Shore after he ended his first stand-up performance by popping and locking. 

“My whole life I’ve had a microphone in my hand. I was pretty much born on the steps of the store” he said. “Most of the people familiar with me know my movies and MTV, but they don’t know my roots. So we’re going to focus on the roots.”

He is also in discussions with a production company about turning it into a TV show.

Pauly Shore
The comedian is now working to turn his one-man show about growing up at the Comedy Store into a TV project.
Getty Images

Shore will also be at South by Southwest this week in Austin, Texas, with his Apple podcast “Jam in the Van,” interviewing bands.

But he definitely hankers to be back on the big screen — he just needs someone to see a different side of him.

“The directors and producers are the ones with the vision. Someone out there will say, ‘You know what, we’re going to do something you wouldn’t expect — we’ll put Pauly in this role that no one would expect,’” Shore said. “That’s where my heart is.”

Oscar winners Ke Huy Quan, Michelle Yeoh, Brendan Fraser and Jamie Lee Curtis.
Oscar winners Ke Huy Quan, Michelle Yeoh, Brendan Fraser and Jamie Lee Curtis.
Chelsea Lauren/Shutterstock

Hollywood is, of course, a fickle mistress. Quan earned his Oscar for “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” a role that came 25 years after his last prominent roles, while Fraser won for “The Whale” after stepping back from Hollywood’s A-list.

Shore traded messages with Quan a few months ago, while he last spoke to Fraser about five years ago.

“I enjoy working with actors who are my straightman … so working with [Fraser] was a pleasure,” Shore recalled. “He became the caveman, he was not doing a caricature. It was really subtle, and it was comedy gold.”

As for the future, Shore said: “I am not going to stop. I’m going to keep going. I know I’m going to get that call, and get that opportunity. That’s what’s it about.”


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