The whispers are true, buddy: Pauly Shore, the once and future Weasel, now lives in Las Vegas. The actor and comic is currently chilling Downtown, keeping himself occupied during lockdown with his Random Rants video podcast (youtube.com/user/paulymshore), and by doing publicity for his upcoming movie, the Sam Macaroni-directed Guest House (available on demand, beginning September 4), in which Shore plays Randy, a laid-back yet obstinate squatter with a formidable drug stash, a sprawling, offbeat posse and a keen awareness of California tenant law.
Despite his leisurely persona, Shore works his ass off: a look at his IMDb page shows nearly 70 acting credits, and before the ’rona he toured comedy clubs like a maniac. The Weekly caught up with him on a free morning to talk a bit about Guest House, his stand-up and his upcoming Vegas plans.
What brought you to Vegas? I was in Maui for quarantine. I was hiking and it just hit me: I said, “I want to move to Vegas,” and that was it. Had an agent get on it the next day, and he found this beautiful house in Rancho Circle. I was lucky; I walked in and said “This is great,” and I made the move and gave the guy my money. And now I’m on the same street where Dean Martin and all these other guys lived. … I feel fortunate that I got out of LA with the coronavirus thing. I’m kind of sequestered here.
Do you have any favorite spots yet? I love the Arts District a lot. I just think what they’re doing down there is young and fresh and it’s got a good energy. … I think Downtown Vegas is a really cool kind of up-and-coming area. What’s great about Vegas is that whatever you want, you can have; it’s all here. You can go to the Wynn; you can go to Caesars Palace; you can find the coolest sushi place. I found this place, Sushi Fever, that was pretty good. You can go get a massage, and there’s gyms everywhere. It’s cool.
Word is you’re creating a one-man show for Vegas. What can you tell us about it? Well, nothing right now, because there’s no stages. It’s something I’ve been working on the road for about a year. It’s just stories of my childhood growing up at the [Comedy] Store and Playboy Mansion, my MTV days, Beverly Hills High School, comedians, my ’70s, ’80s, ’90s… It’s called Stick With the Dancing; that’s the working title. We had a deal to shoot a special, but then the COVID happened, so everything’s on hold.
For now, I’m focusing more on my podcast. … It’s gonna be more of a show. We got [MMA fighter] Roy Nelson as my first guest this week, and also Danny Koker from Count’s Kustoms. And of course, Murray the Magician’s going to be on it, and Carrot Top, and somehow I’m going to convince Nicholas Cage to do it as well. … I’m just going to focus more on my cast and try to create an actual show, almost like a Howard Stern show or something like that, where there’s characters around me that are popping.
Speaking of characters, what attracted you to play Randy in Guest House? Well, I always liked the idea … Originally the character was not that likable. You know, it was a little hard. I went in there and really tried to soften him up and make him more relatable. I just liked the simplicity of the film: the guy living in the guest house who won’t leave. You get it right away.
There are a lot of wild physical gags in the movie. Did you do those? Yes and no. I mean, when a guy is flying through the air, obviously I didn’t do that. I’m a team player on the set; I do whatever they want, you know, to a point—and then I’m like, “Whoa, I can’t do that. I’m not insured.”
He’s a great character. Would you revisit him if Guest House does well? For sure. I mean, I’m still waiting for them to do Encino Man 2, though. So I don’t know if that’s going to happen.
Which of your projects are you most proud of? I think Pauly Shore Is Dead is my best movie, as far as just being gnarly and being very bold. And it was the most personal. I also like Pauly Shore Stands Alone, which was a documentary I did a couple of years back. That was pretty heavy, because that was at a time where I was living with my mom and she was dying of Parkinson’s. It was very emotional; I mean anyone in their late 40s, 50s knows what that’s like, taking care of your parents toward the end.
And putting my father [Sammy Shore] on the road during the last part of his life, that was really important to me. The last 20 years he opened for me, my dad. And that was a pretty special time, because I was able to give him the stage, and also let the audience know the reason why I’m funny and why I’m at where I’m at; a lot of it had to do with him. He would go onstage and just kill, get standing ovations—and then I would come out and I’d say, “Now you guys know I’m so f*cked up. Look at this f*cking crazy man.” You know, my dad onstage, I swear to God, was crazier than me. I was, like, toned down. He wouldn’t stop. He was just this old Jewish comedian that loved the microphone, you know?
You inherited that from him, didn’t you? You’ll never stop entertaining. Yeah, just go and roll. I like to help people. I mean, I honestly think that even in the last part of my life, I might work at a college and teach classes about being in entertainment, you know what I mean? It makes me feel good to kind of teach this next generation stuff, to give them confidence. You know, a lot of these 20-year-olds are just trying to figure it out. They don’t know what’s right and what’s wrong. You know what I mean? That’s cool. I’d like to pay it forward.