Without spoiling too much in Pixar's latest movie Soul, something catastrophic happens to Joe Gardner after he gets his big break at a jazz club. With that in mind, the cast of the film recently spoke to Yahoo Entertainment about their own big breaks in the entertainment industry.
For Jamie Foxx, who voices Joe, he says that auditioning at the Laugh Factor led to a role on the 90s sketch comedy show, In Living Color, which then transformed his career.
"It was interesting because I was the eight funniest person," Foxx says. "Because of In Living Color, I have those fans who watched it when it first came out and those fans who caught it after it had been out ... those guys are sort of like fans forever."
- Get a suit, teach, a good suit. Back here tonight. First show's at 9:00. Soundcheck's at 7:00. We'll see how you do.
KEVIN POLOWY: Your character, Joe, dies, or maybe not. I don't want to spoil anything. But something happens that same night he gets his first big break.
If you look back to the beginnings of your own illustrious careers, what would you say was your first big break?
JAMIE FOXX: Oh, man. Obviously, the biggest break was the audition at the Laugh Factory. And the audience is Keenen Ivory Wayans, Jim Carrey, David Alan Grier, all of The Fly Girls, and the "In Living Color" cast of people.
And I go up on stage on stage, and I get a standing ovation. And then next day, I get a call and say, you're going to be on this show called "In Living Color." And that was what I needed.
And once I got on the show, it was interesting because I was the eighth funniest person. I mean, all these other guys were incredible. The Wayans was hilarious. Everybody was-- because of "In Living Color," I have those fans who watched it when it first came out, and those fans who caught it after it had been out. Those guys are like, sort of, like, fans forever. And I'm fans of them forever.
KEVIN POLOWY: You said all of The Fly Girls were there, too? Does that means Jay Lo was in the audience?
JAMIE FOXX: Yeah. Jennifer Lopez was there. And it was interesting because we were both rookies on the show. And I remember seeing her.
And I say to her, I said, hey, I have a girlfriend. I'm not hitting on you. I said, but you're the most beautiful person I've ever seen. But we sort of like became friends because we were the rookies on the show.
PHYLICIA RASHAD: Being cast as an understudy in Melvin Van Peebles "Ain't Supposed to Die a Natural Death." I understudied four roles. And I had to be ready to perform any one of those four roles at the drop of a hat. And that's a big break in every sense of the word. [LAUGHS]
ANGELA BASSETT: I would agree with that. My big break was working with the Negro Ensemble Company in this bus and truck tour of "CP Time." And I understudy all the ladies. And like Phylicia, you have to be ready the day of, sometimes hours before.
And I had to go on and sing a Billie Holiday song, two Billie Holiday songs. And I don't consider myself a singer at all. But that was a big break.
TINA FEY: Similarly, I think I would say it was I got hired to be in the Second City touring company out of Chicago. And we got paid $75 a show. Even if we had to drive in a van one day each way to get to the show, it was $75. And you got an extra $12.50 for your lunch. But I was like, I made it. I made it.
PHYLICIA RASHAD: Yes, yes, yes.