‘Off the Beat’: Rodney Barnes Talks ‘Mental Toughness’ Hollywood Requires on Brian Baumgartner’s Podcast

This week, The Office star Brian Baumgartner welcomes writer and producer Rodney Barnes on the Off the Beat podcast. The award-winning screenwriter and producer who worked on shows like My Wife and KidsEverybody Hates Chris, and Boondocks sits down with Baumgartner to talk about making it in comedy. Showbiz Cheat Sheet has the exclusive about what you can expect from the Winning Time executive producer’s Off the Beat appearance. 

Rodney Barnes attends the premiere of HBO's 'Winning Time: The Rise Of The Lakers Dynasty'
Rodney Barnes | JC Olivera/WireImage

Brian Baumgartner’s podcast adventures continue with ‘Off the Beat’ 

Baumgartner is still hosting the Off the Beat podcast. Formerly The Office Deep Dive, Baumgartner’s conversations are no longer limited to the NBC comedy series. Instead, he’s conducting interviews with talent from various comedy shows and pulling back the curtain for listeners to learn what happens “off the beat.” 

In the original trailer for the podcast, Baumgartner promised listeners stories from their favorite stars before they were stars. “You’ll learn what was going on behind the scenes,” Baumgartner said. This week, Barnes is sharing those experiences. 

Teasers from Brian Baumgartner’s ‘Off the Beat’ interview with Rodney Barnes 

Sources tell us Barnes and Baumgartner will chat about how Rodney slid his way into his first writers’ room, how comic books prepared him for the world, and what it’s like to write about a history that’s still living in the June 14 episode of Off the Beat. In the episode, Barnes compares working in Hollywood to working in a circus.

“Every month, two months, three months you could be moving on to the next place and you’ve gotta figure out how you’re going to make it,” Barnes says in an exclusive clip. “There’s a lot of rejection, or could be … certainly in my career there’s been a lot of rejection. You have to mostly be able to continue to get back up on the horse when things don’t go the way you want them to go. If you don’t have that mental toughness, this is going to be a really hard ride for you.” 

Barnes also details his climb up the Hollywood ladder, which included living in his car when he first got to Los Angeles — something he says “didn’t feel like homelessness.” Additionally, Barnes highlights working his way into his first writers’ room despite not being invited. 

Barnes also addresses the impact comic books have had on his career. As an only child who spent a lot of time by himself, Barnes says comic books were “a friend” he could depend on.

‘Off the Beat’ podcasts’ previous guest stars  

Before Barnes, The Office actor sat down with several comedy actors, writers, and producers, including How I Met Your Mother‘s Alyson Hannigan and Modern Family‘s Eric Stonestreet. Here’s a list of the other comedy stars Baumgartner has interviewed on Off the Beat

  • Rob Riggle
  • Jessica Szohr
  • Jamie-Lynn Sigler 
  • Creed Bratton
  • Lamorne Morris
  • Kevin Nealon
  • Wendie Malick
  • Oscar Nunez 
  • Jon Hamm
  • Catherine Tate
  • Aasif Mandavi 
  • Jenna Elfman
  • Larry The Cable Guy
  • Tramell Tillman
  • Anne Winters 

Stay tuned to Showbiz for the latest Off the Beat episodes. Listen to new episodes of iHeart Radio’s Off the Beat with Brian Baumgartner every Tuesday wherever you listen to podcasts. 

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