Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Kevin Smith’s new book ‘Tough Sh*t’

As the bigger half of ‘Jay and Silent Bob’, director Kevin Smith benefits from having a huge fan  following of his independent movies as he plans to transition into life no longer behind the camera.

Smith wrote and released his newest book last month, “Tough Sh*t: Life advice from a fat, lazy slob who did good.”  After writing and directing film for 20 years Smith plans to retire from directing after doing so in one more live action feature.

In the early 90’s Smith was working the counter at a local convenience store while the majority of his high school class was succeeding in college. Everything in Smith’s life changed quickly as he turned his life into a black and white $27,000 budgeted film simply called, “Clerks.” The rest of course, is history as he went on to make five additional films similarly based on the same characters of his black and white gem.  His journey from a dead end job to a dreamy career is thoroughly documented by Smith in, “Tough Sh*t.”

The book’s introductory chapter poignantly details the death of Smith’s father Don, which truly was some “Tough Sh*t” to read. Smith does take the reader on a journey, beginning with what inspired him to become a filmmaker and to new experiences, like being thrown off a Southwest Airlines flight for being “too fat to fly.” For his fans, he explains why he made questionable moves like directing the criticized, “Cop Out”, and then writing and directing the very different, “Red State”, a film released just last year.

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Now as for the retiring of Smith as a director, he will definitely do so after he makes the hockey movie, “Hit Somebody.” As to why he plans to fold up the directing chair, Smith feels he no longer has anything to say cinematically and rather do his brand of storytelling in another way. So those that will be missing Smith’s films or to anyone who does not know how funny he can be, Smith has created an entire Podcast empire located for free at

The switch from movies to podcasts is simple, because Smith can seriously talk for days. Upon the release of “ToughSh*t”, Smith made an appearance at a Los Angeles Barnes and Noble where fans who bought the book were treated to hear him speak for two and a half hours. As usual, Smith answered fans questions in great length, giving out advice to follow your dreams. In the discussion, Smith made headlines as he announced his desire to release ‘Clerks 3’ as a Broadway play and also released more information on the upcoming “Jay And Silent Bob’s Extra Groovy Animated Movie.”

So to anyone familiar with the body of work from Kevin Smith or not, his book is recommended because it will help anyone get up and go after their dreams.  “Tough Sh*t” is not what the average reader will expect from a foul mouthed filmmaker, the book is simple and straightforward but it is not a dumbed down book.  His stories in the book are both hilarious and page turning as they are filled with pop and geeky references.

It is a refreshing to know that someone with as big as Smith (pun unintended) is still very humble and down to earth. Smith has been writing since the age of 12 and packed with all his weight is plenty of knowledge that will do every student some good to read.

KevinSmith answering questions from fans at his Barnes and Noble book signing at the Grove L.A. March 27.

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David Flores, Reporter

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