Maya Rudolph recalls a stage in her career when she didn’t have the confidence to stand up for herself.
During an interview with WSJ. Magazine which appeared online Friday, the star of Apple TV+s loot remembered her first visit to CBS’ The late show in 2009. Rudolph explained that she felt uncomfortable during the interview after host David Letterman mispronounced her name.
“I didn’t have a good time,” she told the publication. “He said my name wrong, and I just sat there, like, I grew up in love with you all my life. And now my heart is broken. And I sit here ashamed and humiliated. I didn’t know how to deal with it.”
She continued: “I didn’t know how to think of something funny to say. My public persona muscle wasn’t strong yet.”
Rudolph, who made her Saturday Night Live debut in 2000, said she’s gotten better at finding humor in challenging moments since then. “I have” Surely much better,” she says. “If I’m not comfortable, I try to be funny.”
Letterman later in the episode apologized to Rudolph for his unintentional blunder. “I’m sorry I mispronounced your name,” he said. “I’m just a boob, there’s no excuse for it, and I sincerely apologize from the bottom of my heart.”
The Hollywood Reporter has contacted a Letterman representative for additional comment.
The Emmy-winning Rudolph, appearing next month in disappointed opposite Amy Adams, told THR in a June cover story she values maintaining a wall between her public and private personas. “I think the armor has done me good because I don’t want to be someone who has nothing for myself anymore,” she said at the time. “I enjoy the harness.”