Sudeikis from Ted Lasso helps raise funds for prosthetics
With an Emmy Award win and a successful Apple TV+ series under his belt, Jason Sudeikis is having a big one year.
The show, of course, is “Ted Lasso” as Sudeikis plays an upbeat and kind American football coach who takes charge of a professional British football team despite knowing little about the game.
The comedy Fish Out of Water has been a welcome haven for many fans dealing with the blues pandemic and other stressful events of the past 15 months. The second season of the series explores Sudeikis’ mental health struggles. And no one is guessing what the third – which is said to start shooting in January – will hit.
Amid this success, Sudeikis recently returned to his hometown of Kansas City to host Thundergong! , an annual concert for a charity that helps amputees who lack proper health coverage pay for their prosthetics.
The event, which begins on Saturday, will raise funds for the Faith Steps Foundation. The Kansas City-based organization is headed by Billy Brimblikum Jr., a drummer and longtime friend. Sudeikis raised a donation to get a prosthetic leg for Primplecum after being diagnosed with a form of cancer that required him to have his leg amputated.
The AP recently spoke to the two friends about the concert, Ted Lasso and other things. Interview has been edited for clarity and length.
Associated Press: I read that two people met at an improv workshop in Kansas City in 1995. How was that meeting?
Sudeikis: We’ve done something called “comedy sports” that still exists in a few cities. Although it is in Kansas City, it is now called “Comedy City”. We were organizing workshops. I think we did the test and were impressed with our arm cut. I was young. No, you just graduated. right? Was it summer ’94 or ’95?
Brimblecome: It was the summer of ’95. I took the test in the spring of ’95. I was a senior and was in Fort Scott.
Sudeikis: Yes. We’d just do workshops, like a six-week workshop or something. I think we did the test and were impressed with our arm cut. We hit it there.
AP: Bailey, many people would argue that the work you do should not be dependent on charities, or fundraising. And that we need a bigger reform of our health care system to address it.
Brimblecom: Oh, how much time do we have? The fact that I have this post is ridiculous. The fact that something like steps of faith must exist, and that someone who lost a limb was not covered is unjust.
I always like to say that our healthcare system is a misnomer, because there is no care out there. The problem is health insurance companies. In Steps of Faith, we do not comment on anything controversial unless it directly affects the work we do. So, here we go: the health insurance system is totally and totally ridiculous. They don’t care about you. They don’t care about me or Jason, and they don’t care about the doctors.
AP: What do you think about that, Jason?
Sudeikis: Oh, I agree with him 100%.
Associated Press: What should people expect to see if they attend the concert on Saturday?
Brimplecum: They should just expect a really interesting show. It’s funny and sweet, and it’s cool. There is great music. This is the most, I think you’ll agree, Jason, this is our most diverse lineup.
Sudeikis: Yeah, it’s definitely a useful variety show. We have a range of bands and solo artists, but also comedians, like Will Forte, Fred Armisen, and Heidi Gardner, all of whom are active and SNL experts. Fred and Will have done it every year. Heidi is from Kansas City.
AP: Is there a certain amount you want to raise this year?
Sudeikis: We’re trying to help 185 people. I got out of one of my limbs and said, I think we can get 200. Billy knows better than me because he’s actually inside of it.
Brimblecom: Look at the profit and loss.
Sudeikis: Yeah, I don’t even know what profits and losses mean. (Laughs)
Brimblecom: It’s a win and a loss. I didn’t learn it until I got this job.
So this year, Steps of Faith’s goal is to help 185 amputees, Jason said, we’re on track to make it happen, and hopefully we can beat it. We’ll probably get to 200. So I’d love for this event to raise at least $500,000. It’s Saturday, 7 p.m. Central time, all over the planet.
Sudeikis: And beyond. Maybe they get online somewhere else.
AP: Well, what do you guys think of aliens? This is a good question.
Sudeikis: (laughs) Well, if they have money to help us, we’ll take it.
Brimblecom: Where do you think “cryptocurrency” comes from?
Sudeikis: Good point (laughs). We’ll take bitcoin and moon rocks.
Brimblikum: (laughs) We’ll take it all.
AP: Jason, on ‘Ted Lasso’, feeling pressured to top previous seasons as she gears up to film Season 3?
Sudeikis: It’s just the pressure we put on ourselves. We still make it the same way we made the first two. It was nice that people really responded to the show. And there is certainly a great deal of truth in the “Mo ‘Money, Mo'” problems.
But we try to use that enthusiasm for the show, as just another crayon in our crayon box and something else that kind of helps us guide our story telling and where we want to take the characters. But the external pressure is less than the pressure I think we feel within ourselves. The same way we felt the first two years.
AP: Will your character ever return to the United States?
Sudeikis: I don’t know. Could? “Yes” or “No” fall into the category of spoilers.
AP: What do you think of season four? Is this a possibility?
Sudeikis: Anything is possible. But I sound like a real coach when I answer this question. We worry about one season at a time. We’re in the middle of writing season three, and we can’t think of anything further at this point.
The Associated Press receives support from the Lilly Endowment to cover philanthropy and nonprofit organizations. AP is solely responsible for all content. For all of AP’s coverage of philanthropy, visit https://apnews.com/hub/philanthropy.
Copyright 2021 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.