The funny business of social media
Frank Woodley is a relative newbie at social media, but coming up with the goods is a tough ask, as he explains to TV Tonight.
When he isn’t filming his new ABC comedy series Woodley, Frank Woodley is probably racking his brain to come up with something clever to impart to his fans on his official Facebook page.
Woodley admits to being a bit of a newbie at social media but adopted the idea after it was suggested as a way of staying in touch with his fanbase.
“Somebody at my management said ‘A lot of people are doing this, do you think it’s a good idea?'” he said.
“I’m not a big social media user myself but I put a joke on there every day and try to do some jokes about the filming. They’re often not great jokes, but little comments.”
But even for such a skilled comedian it’s not easy making comedy seem so effortless, as he explains to TV Tonight.
“I actually like the discipline of having to flex the muscle of writing a little comic moment. The people who read it think I just sit down and write but often I have to sit there for 25 minutes trying to think of something,” he laughs.
“One thing that annoys me is that often people will come back with a ‘topper’ to my joke. 30 seconds later there will be somebody writing a funnier response. I’ve sat there or 25 minutes trying to think of a joke!”
So far he has resisted the lure of Twitter. And he draws a clear line between discussing professional and personal affairs.
“I actually don’t talk about my personal life, so I make jokes or talk about topical things. I know some people might feel I’m a bit of a snob, but I don’t get involved in the conversations with any of the fans,” he explains.
“I think if I start doing that then you’d feel like you’re snubbing some people if you’re not replying to them. Or if you got in a conversation with someone and then you stopped conversing with them then they’d feel rejected.
“So I’ve decided not to engage -which in some ways is not in the spirit of social media. Some people may feel I’m doing it in a half-hearted way, but personally I don’t want to disappoint people. I don’t want to build up the relationships I can’t deliver on!”
Woodley admits that there are occasions when he is tempted to break his own rule.
“Sometimes I have an itch to respond to somebody if they’ve got a question. If it was another situation, like on the street, I’m really happy to give people some time, but it’s just the fact that it will grow expedientially and you open up a Pandora’s Box.”
Set to air on ABC1 later in the year Woodley is a romantic but visual comedy, co-starring Justine Clarke, Tom Long and Alexandra Cashmere.
“Visual comedy has been kicking around in my head for as long as I’ve been working. My first love of comedy comes from cinema and television. So the seed for me was those kinds of images, such as Get Smart, The Goodies, Pink Panther films, and Jerry Lewis films.”