Jimmy Fallon dreamed of being on “Saturday Night Live” ever since he was a teenager.
Fallon would tape each show for review later and insist on watching alone every Saturday night.
“I just didn’t want anyone ruining my experience,” Fallon tells David Kamp in Vanity Fair’s February cover story. “No small talk. I wanted to see the sketches, the new characters, what the angle was.”
Eventually, Fallon landed a spot on “SNL” at age 24.
Tina Fey, then a writer on the show, recalled the moment Fallon auditioned: “He’s one of two people I’ve ever seen who was completely ready to be on the show. Kristen Wiig is the other one…. And Jimmy was ready — like, if there had been a show to do that night.”
Once he got into the swing of things, Fallon tells Vanity Fair that show creator, Lorne Michaels, really became his mentor — on everything from work to his personal life.
“Lorne helped me with everything — with relationships, with me getting famous,” Fallon tells the mag. “I was going through certain steps, and there were certain things I couldn’t talk to my dad about, because he wouldn’t know. Like ‘I have money now. Do I still rent? Do I buy an apartment?’ Or ‘I’m in L.A., and I have to rent a car.’ [“Lorne” voice] ‘You should get a Lexus, because you want to be quiet.’ Or ‘Should I date this actress?’ [“Lorne” voice] ‘You can date her, but you probably shouldn’t marry her.’ And he’d be totally right.”
After Fallon left “SNL” in 2004 to pursue a (lackluster) career on the big screen, it was Michaels who eventually brought him back to TV to host “Late Night.”
Come next month, Fallon will take the reigns from Jay Leno at the “Tonight Show,” but he insists he will continue his own brand of humour.
“It’s still going to be the same show,” Fallon tells Vanity Fair. “What I can tell you is it will be the best of what we do.”
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