Earlier this month Gabriel Iglesias saw Comedy Central throw an insane amount of support behind his latest special, titled Aloha Fluffy, when they spread the two-hour show over two Sundays, turning it into the must-see comedy event of April.
Now Aloha Fluffy is available for everyone's consumption and ETonline caught up with the immensely popular comic to talk about that apt title, his recent weight loss and his long-term career goals!
ETonline: Why did you title the special Aloha Fluffy?
Gabriel Iglesias: We were shooting the special in Hawaii so we wanted something catchy -- when you go to Hawaii, it's all about "Aloha." It means hello, goodbye and I love you. So there was a nice double meaning behind it.
ETonline: Your nickname is also fluffy -- how much is saying goodbye to your former self given the recent weight loss?
Iglesias: You're the first person to actually catch on to that. It was more of a health issue, which is why I seriously needed to do something. People are going to think I'm not "fluffy" any more -- but, honestly, 99 percent of my show has nothing to do with my size. I feel a lot better, but I'm still big. I was 437 pounds, so it's not like I'm not overweight anymore. I'm still a big dude; I'm around 340 right now. I could still lose 100 more pounds and be considered overweight.
ETonline: Did you learn any weight loss tips working on Magic Mike?
Iglesias: [laughs] Man, working on that set, watching guys work out all day and leave the craft service table alonedefinitely helped. Since Magic Mike, I've dropped almost 90 pounds.
ETonline: What do you consider the most essential element of a successful stand-up set?
Iglesias: It's all about the connection. A lot of times the entertainers who are here today and gone tomorrow lose touch with that. They can't relate to their fans. I'm all about showing people that I'm a little messed up, I have a lot of the same problems you have. By exposing myself and putting myself out there, people can relate to me and my act won't grow stale. I mean, nobody wants to hear a comedian say life is great. I'm working on a new 45 minute set and the next special is going to be very, very different. I'm putting a lot of stuff on the table and exposing a lot of issues I have. It's definitely my most personal routine.
ETonline: What made you get into comedy?
Iglesias: My ultimate goal was to quit my day job and pay my rent, so I've exceeded my expectations [laughs]. I think that's what more people should do. set that bar low so when you pass it, you have a great day! Now, I employ over 30 people, which is insane. I have the biggest group of comedians in a single show, so little by little I'm trying to break each one of them off so they can go out there and do their own thing. I want other comedians to see that it doesn't hurt them to go out there and help out the next guy.
ETonline: Do you find that sense of community rare in the comedy world?
Iglesias: Very much. For so long it was all about helping out number one. It's nice that I'm in a position to help other people out because there's not a lot of guys out there that do that, which is unfortunate. Music tends to see more of that. I just know you can not be on top forever. There's always going to be the next guy, and if I'm going to go down, I'd like to know I helped the next guy take my spot. You can't prevent the inevitable, but you can join the ship. I might need to open for that guy one day!
Aloha Fluffy is now available on DVD, click here to pre-order!