The character of Albert Snodoloberm began way back in 2005 as a mildly sociopathic puppet named Al the Slug. Puppet Al was a much happier fellow, kind of cheeky. He would simply lie about being famous…for instance, he claimed to have done most of Johnny Depp’s dialogue replacement for various Tim Burton movies.
Then for about a decade I was making strange feature-length puppet films – you can see them over at Lumalin.com – and when Al the Slug took his turn for a leading role in Hell Leaks Laughter (2014), things went very badly for him. That movie was a cruel farewell to any celebrity dreams of his.
But I wanted to keep working with the character, seeing how far down the rabbit hole of regret and envy and bitterness and casual paranoia I could take him – so I began playing him as a human, beginning with a play called The Last Video Game. And if I had to be honest, there’s something about the character that has become autobiographical. Slogging away at making existential puppet movies for a decade probably feels not all that different from Albert’s never getting famous…
And even though his adventures have now permanently (?) shifted into human form, I still think of it as a kind of puppeteering. Becoming Albert is a bit like becoming a huge biological Muppet from Newark (or Long Island, or wherever the hell that voice is from).