Lori Jo Hoekstra (‘Norm Macdonald: Nothing Special’): ‘I never would have ever released it if he didn’t want it shown’ [Exclusive Video Interview]

“We didn’t expect it to be seen,” reveals Lori Jo Hoekstra about Emmy nominee “Norm Macdonald: Nothing Special” for Netflix. For our recent webchat she continues, “But I’m so grateful that Norm shot it so we could share it.” Watch the exclusive video interview above.

“Nothing Special” is the final comedy special from former “Saturday Night Live” star Norm Macdonald, who passed away from illness last September. Netflix was scheduled to record it this year in front of a live audience. Fortunately, the comedian recorded the set at home last year. Resulting is a raw and distinctive comedy performance giving new insights into the process of a comedy icon. Hoekstra produced the special and explains, “That was completely his idea to do it. It was a safety net to have it recorded, since we all know what he was going through at the time. I never would have ever released it if he didn’t want it shown. He wanted his material out there. So the fact that I could share it, I call a gift that he left. It’s incredibly impactful that we get to share it, with his blessing.”

The comedy special has received three Emmy nominations – Variety Special Writing, Variety Special Directing and Best Variety Special. These are the first three Emmy nominations Macdonald has ever received in his lengthy career. Hoekstra worked with him since 1993 when he joined “SNL.” She reflects, “To be able to sum up what I’ve learned from Norm goes well beyond comedy. He always was so true to who he really was. He knew what he thought was funny and he stayed true to it.  She also says, “I used to always say I didn’t know what the concept of boredom was. And I 100% know that was because I was affiliated and around Norm so much. Something I miss is just that full full life.”

At the end of the special reflections are given by David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Dave Chappelle, Molly Shannon, Adam Sandler and David Spade. They all discuss the impact the performance and Macdonad’s legacy leaves. Hoekstra admits, “Those are powerhouse names. As much as you’d want to put the weight on the fact that they’re in it, It’s Norm’s special, so I was careful to reserve them for the end. I know Norm would be so moved by everyone doing it in the first place.”

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