British comedian Stephen Fry is best known for his work as an actor, writer and, more recently, a new media aficionado, with some million-plus Twitter followers eagerly awaiting his every digital dispatch. But Fry’s body of work is staggering. The short version: He’s directed two documentaries, hosted one of the most popular British television shows ever, penned a popular tech column, written four books, starred in a stream of major sitcoms and movies, and managed to have a successful radio show. With most of these pursuits already well-documented, his Big Think sit-down centered around the ideas and experiences that made him who he is.
Along with identifying the writers and philosophers that have influenced him, Fry spoke about the value of assuming that there is no afterlife. He also spoke about how Oscar Wilde has been a tremendous influence in his life and named a few of his other heroes.
Finally, Fry offered plenty of advice for his fans: don’t sell out, and do encourage “the lubricant” of laughter for a happy family. His quip about the punishing nature of an eternity with one’s family was lost on a Mormon tour guide in Salt Lake City.