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Russell Brand plans to address Mahatma Gandhi, Malcolm X in Chicago Just For Laughs festival set

Russell Brlaunches his world tour 'The Messiah Complex' Chicago Theater Wednesday night. | Getty Images

Russell Brand launches his world tour "The Messiah Complex" at the Chicago Theater Wednesday night. | Getty Images

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TBS Just for Laughs Chicago

When: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday

Where: Chicago Theatre, 175 N. State

Tickets: $43-$59

Info: or www.justfor

Updated: June 11, 2013 7:43PM

Russell Brand

Comedian/actor/TBS Just for Laughs headliner

Age: 37

Mosquitoes, I wish they’d f--- off, but what can you do?

There are some days I’m not so sanguine, and I’ve been arrested twice on account of not having that attitude.

[Facetiously] You can’t even commit a casual violent crime without being recorded.

Imagine you’re thinking, ‘It’s about time for a cultural revolution,’ and then someone walks past you and they’ve got a really nice a--. You think, ‘Well, we don’t need the cultural revolution right now. I can do it in an hour.’ And then there’s something good on the[television].

It’s very easy to get distracted in Hollywood by the cleavages.

My set is about [the fact that] Malcolm X and Gandhi and Che Guevara and Jesus were all at least 50 percent human, and as a human being you’re flawed and distracted and diverted by your own flesh and by your own primal needs.

Our heroes are flawed. We are flawed. Only God is perfect. So we need a way of relating to that. We need coordinates to get through life, otherwise we live miserable, nihilistic little existences.

I think probably everything in my life is as a result of my one-day-at-a-time decision not to drink and use drugs.

Everyone’s the same. Everyone’s going to die. Try and be nice to people, because you’re all connected and there’s nothing to get and there’s nothing really to give. Everything’s going to end up in the same place.

I can be thinking, “Yeah, this is it! I’m living my life’s purpose, helping others, being loving.” And then I’ll see someone really sexy and I’ll think, “Oh, nicely. That’s much more interesting.”

I don’t want to separate me from the common man. I feel like I am the common man.

Drugs and anything that’s meaningless or destructive — none of that stuff works for long. It all ends up in the same place. There’s bits of it that are really, really exciting and stimulating, but you always end up in the same place.

In the end, you’ve got to pay the piper. The piper has to be paid.

It’s difficult to be a rebel without a cause now when there are so many causes.

We have a genetic program that’s not appropriate for the world we’re living in, so it leads to excess. Excessive sex, if you have access to it. Excessive bad food, if you have access to it, which increasingly we all do. So it means we have to have an excessive spiritual awareness and programming to advance that.

We live in a culture that forever stimulates fear and desire and never, ever stimulates spiritual principals or seeks to align us again with them.

On a daily basis I will start thinking that what’s important is status and really nice footwear.

Even when I was a junkie,

it was f------ dreadful and it wasn’t funny but it was real. I’d be up there, setting fire to the Koran, throwing dead animals out into the audience, slashing myself up and taking heroine. But it was an authentic experience.

Truth and authenticity, when you’re in alignment with them, is very, very peaceful.

Comedy is something I’ve always been able to return to. There’s something very authentic about it, so no matter what’s going on, whenever I get onto the stage I feel very real and connected. It doesn’t matter where I am.

I’m completely optimistic about the possibility for change. I one hundred percent believe that the world is changing, and in the right direction.


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