Feature: Brett Goldstein for Fast Company

07 Dec 2022

Brett Goldstein likes to talk about death. On his weekly podcast, Films to Be Buried With, he asks guests to imagine their own demise.

Since he’s a stand-up comedian—and many of his guests are, too—the more ghoulishly funny the death, the better. But the point of the show is to talk about movies, so guests must then regale heaven’s residents with the story of their life, told through the films they loved most.

Given this preoccupation, Goldstein is delighted to meet me at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles, a sort of heaven on earth for cinephiles. It’s two days after he won his second Emmy for his performance as Roy Kent on the series Ted Lasso. Tomorrow, he’s flying back to London to finish shooting Lasso’s third season finale—which is reportedly running so far behind schedule that the show will not return until 2023. “We’re obsessively perfecting the final script,” Goldstein says.

His voice, higher and gentler than Kent’s South London growl, betrays none of the stress you’d expect from someone whose job it is to script the perfect denouement for what, according to multiple reports, would be the series finale. “It could be the end,” he says cryptically. “Could be.”

Goldstein, 42, has been doing stand-up and appearing in British sitcoms for 20 years. He was moderately famous in the U.K., and not at all in the U.S., until Lasso premiered in 2020. The heartwarming sports comedy created by Jason Sudeikis (who plays the titular head coach), Brendan Hunt (Coach Beard), Bill Lawrence, and Joe Kelly had been turned down by every major streamer before then-newbie Apple TV+ scooped it up. No one, creators included, expected that a show about a struggling U.K. football team (Goldstein visibly cringes at the word soccer) would become a hit in America, let alone a global phenomenon. But turns out that in dark times, positivity wins.

pub’s Greek chorus of AFC Richmond fans, but none may be more beloved than Goldstein’s hard-charging, gooey-centered captain-turned-coach Roy Kent: the man every guy wants to be, and every woman wants to be with. Or, in keeping with Lasso’s fondness for referencing iconic romantic comedies: He had us at no.

Goldstein and Kent are so entwined that upon meeting the actor, I expected the character’s rigid demeanor, the threat of a header. He is wearing black and does enjoy the F-word, but Goldstein is all smiles and warmly deferential. As we enter the museum, he reverently removes his baseball cap, as if entering a holy place.

We check out a dark room off the lobby, an amuse-bouche of flickering screens playing clips from classic films. Goldstein, an avowed lover of musicals, makes a beeline toward a screen playing “Good Morning” from Singin’ in the Rain, one of his own films to be buried with. Above his mask, Goldstein’s emotive eyebrows (Roy Kent’s best assist) seem to dance along, like animated hedgerows. [More Source]