Jerry Seinfeld learns from comedy’s best on Netflix series

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — Jerry Seinfeld would rather cruise in classic cars and sip coffee with comedy’s best than reboot his uber-successful Seinfeld television series.

“No, and do what? Make it worse?” Seinfeld said in an interview Wednesday night about his eponymous NBC sitcom, which celebrated its 30-year anniversary this month. “I’m very fortunate to be in the position to make that show with those people at that time. I wouldn’t be arrogant enough to think I could do it again. That’s egomaniacal. I’m happy with what I have now.”

These days, Seinfeld is focused on learning more about the “sharpest minds in comedy” through his Netflix series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. The 11th season of the series premieres Friday on the streaming service featuring Eddie Murphy, who talked about his career and shared stories with Seinfeld about them coming up in comedy together in New York in the 1970s.

The new season also includes an array of other comedians including Martin Short, Rick Gervais, Seth Rogan, Bridget Everett, Barry Marder, Melissa Villaseño and Mario Joyner. Jamie Foxx appears in an episode to talk about him wanting to return to standup and his impersonation of Dave Chappelle.

“It’s kind of a music video to me. It’s just kind of visual. The words are interesting and sometimes it’s funny, but I like it to have a rhythm and flow and then it’s over,” Seinfeld said. “It’s just very quick. I always like when people go ‘I wish that was a little longer.’”

Seinfeld launched Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee on Sony’s Crackle in 2012. The series was moved to Netflix two years ago after the comedian signed a massive deal with the streaming service.

This season, Seinfeld continues to pick up each guest in a different vintage car, from a Maserati Mistral to a Rolls-Royce convertible to a beat-up Dodge Monaco. He takes them to a cafe or restaurant for coffee where they have an easy-flowing conversation about their career and life experiences as comedians.

Seinfeld said he learns something new from each guest. He was surprised when Murphy spoke about not being as confident as most thought during his rise in comedy. He also didn’t know that Rogen first heard about Bill Cosby’s sexual misconduct history from Hannibal Buress in 2014, a month before Buress accused Cosby in a viral stand-up routine.

For Seinfeld, he feels somewhat like a news reporter in an effort to create a comfortable environment for guests to open up.

“People like to tell me stuff, and I don’t know why,” said Seinfeld, who has featured former President Barack Obama and Kevin Hart in previous seasons. “It’s happened to me my whole life, because I think I really listen. But I would never put anything in the show I think the person might not want in there. I want the show to be fun like a little cappuccino foam, just light and pleasant.”

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