The cast and showrunners of HBO’s Silicon Valley (2014 - ) gathered in a SXSW 2016 panel entitled “Making the World a Better Place,” where the guys traded jokes about the tech industry. Here’s the best banter from the event.
1. Zach Woods: “Now old money families are, like, the Rockefellers and Carnegies, from steel and railways, but in 100 years, there’ll be some Little Lord Fauntleroy who’s like, ‘My family money is from Grindr.’ And the Grindrs would look down on the new money.”
Thomas Middleditch: “We had to toil and sweat over it to find out who was DTF in a certain mile radius.”
Woods: “We had to facilitate glory-hole blowjobs.”
Middleditch: You kids have it so easy.”
2. Zach Woods: “When the show premiered at SXSW a couple years ago, I was in the hotel lobby eating, and I heard someone rehearsing their pitch for the tech part of the festival. The guy said, verbatim he said, ‘Our app is the Mahatma Gandhi of apps.’”
3. Thomas Middleditch on how the hustle of the tech world mirrors the acting industry: “There’s this mantra of hustle, hustle it at all costs. There are certain actors that have their headshots and their business card, and they’re like, ‘Hey, if you know Martin Scorsese, please pass this onto him, I’d love to be in this movie.’”
Martin Starr: “That’s how Leonardo DiCaprio met Martin Scorsese cause he was handing out his business cards.”
Middleditch: “Yeah, it works. My point is that is works.”
4. Zach Woods: “At the risk of sounding like a complete brown-noser, if you look at these writers, their sexual magnetism is only exceeded by their intellectual felicity.”
5. Alec Berg: “It’s hard to do a show about a compelling guy who gets everything he wants…. watching you guys win and win is not fun TV.”
Josh Brener: “Do you think you just hate us as people a little bit, and seeing us be happy even onscreen is unsettling for you?”
6. Steven Leckart: Did it feel rewarding the way that the show was perceived, and did it meet expectations for you guys?
Zach Woods: I think there’s a God-sized hole in our souls that no amount of success will fill, so. You know, you’re just on a treadmill running from yourself.
Thomas Middleditch: But yeah, I mean, the show’s done well.
Woods: Yeah, the show’s done well!
7. Zach Woods: “People like to be made fun of as long as it feels accurate. It’s like if your friends give you shit for something then you feel sort of known, if it’s something that’s true. So if my girlfriend’s like, ‘You big tall stupid idiot,’ then I’m like, ‘Oh she noticed.’
Steven Leckart: By the way, that was a humble brag.
Josh Brener: That he has a girlfriend?
Zach Woods: I have a girlfriend!