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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Celebrity Q&A: Jason Lee on School Life

The star and producer of NBC's hit comedy My Name Is Earl talks about his school years.
By Edutopia
Edutopia Team

Jason Lee, star and producer of NBC's hit comedy My Name Is Earl, is a very animated guy -- literally.

Lee's big break came in 1995 with the lead role in writer-director Kevin Smith's comedy Mallrats, and he went on to star in some of Smith's other films, including Chasing Amy. He was also featured in Cameron Crowe's Almost Famous as the lead singer of a 1970s rock band called Stillwater.

But Lee's latest film is the computer-animation/live-action hybrid feature film Alvin and the Chipmunks, in which he stars as Dave Seville, the songwriter and father figure to singing chipmunks Alvin, Simon, and Theodore. His voice work also includes the lead character in Underdog, last summer's live-action film adaptation of the classic 1960s cartoon, and the role of Syndrome in the award-winning animated feature The Incredibles.

What is your idea of a perfect teacher?

A friend.

What was your most memorable school experience?

Getting sent to the principal's office for making the class laugh.

What was the low point?

Going to the principal's office.

Did you go to public or private school?

Public.

Where did you fit in your schools' social hierarchies?

The ratty-little-skater clique.

What was your favorite subject?

None.

If you could change one thing about education in America, what would it be?

The psychiatric drugging of kids -- and the food stinks.

What is impossible to learn in school?

Only what you can't understand.

What should they teach that they don't teach now?

How to use a dictionary. Kids should know what they're studying and actually pass the tests, and not just by memorization.

What did you learn today?

That my son is hilarious.

What did you teach?

I'm not a teacher.

What is in your dream lunchbox?

Sandwich, cupcake, root beer.

If you wrote a textbook, what would it be called?

NOT Calculus!

If the prom were tomorrow, whom would you take?

The missus.


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