Jon Hamm Was a Human Jungle Gym as a Daycare Teacher

I just learned something
just now about you that I did not know. That’s probably the most
terrifying introduction ever said on television
that anyone can say. Well– What’s that? I wish it was more
controversial. But your first acting
job was on Ally McBeal. That is true. Was that when my wife was on? I believe it was. Yeah, do you remember
meeting Portia? I think I met we met in passing. OK. Yeah, oh, man, that hair. [LAUGHTER] I think Rob Lowe said once
that being a successful actor is nothing more than
watching yourself have a series of bad haircuts. Right. Well, in the ’80s especially. I didn’t have a
name on that show. My character didn’t have a name. But I was cast as
“handsome guy at bar.” Wow. Well, that’s flattering– I guess. –that you’re
“handsome guy at bar.” Yeah. So did you have a speaking part? I certainly did not. No? No. I was to stand there
and be looked at. Handsome guy, oh, gorgeous guy. Gorgeous guy, sorry. I was downplaying it. Yeah, you’re being humble. It’s “gorgeous guy at bar.” [LAUGHTER] “Gorgeous guy at bar.” G-G-A-B. Yep, and now you’re a
gorgeous guy sitting here on a talk show
with a big career. Well– Yeah. [CHEERING] Everything starts with one step,
and that was the first one. That was a good first step. What did you do after that? Do you remember? After I’d left set? Yes. Yeah, you went home. Waited for two weeks to get
my paycheck for no dollars. And no, I took it in stride. Did you get another job? I did. I eventually got a
job, and I eventually got to talk in
front of a camera. And then I eventually
got to talk more and in repeated episodes. So it was– again,
moving from St. Louis to LA is jumping into a
very deep, very scary pool. Yes. And it’s difficult.
But it’s exciting. Yeah, it is. When you’re that age, it’s fun. But it’s so weird. When you think back on
auditioning, and it really was. How many gorgeous guys showed up
to be gorgeous guy at the bar? I was literally
picked out of a line of people, where the guy
was walking down the line and was like, eh, you. Yeah. I was like, well, I
certainly feel special. Yes. [LAUGHTER] No talent whatsoever. Nothing there at all
other than be seventh. You were seventh in line. Yeah. No, but it really is. When you think back about all
those auditions that you do, and that you’re just sitting
in a room with people that look similar to you. That look kind of like you
and have way more credits. Right. And way more sort
of something or not. Or that’s the thing. That’s the weirdest
thing about acting is you can do everything right
and still not get the job. You can do everything. I did the best I could. I really tried. I really put all
my effort into it. And we’re were like, no, thanks. Yeah, I know. I think about people on Broadway
that sing and dance and act and do all these things. And then you have
somebody just that gets lucky and gets on a TV show
that runs forever, you know? Thank you very much. [LAUGHTER] I will take that
as a compliment. Somebody like you. Somebody like you. Yeah, that’s not what I meant. You know what I mean. What are you doing this summer? Do you have vacation plans? I have been working so– this whole first half of
the year, well, what is it? It’s first half of the
year I was working nonstop. And so I finally the
last couple of weeks was like, OK, we
need to take a break. So I’m going to go. My friend suggested a
very adventurous idea that I was a little skeptical
about but eventually was like, all right, let’s do it. We’re going whitewater
rafting, which I’ve never done, and I hope I survive. Where? Somewhere in Oregon
where they have steep rivers and whitewater. Uh-huh. You’ve never done it before? No. How many people in the boat? I don’t know. Me, my friend, and
I’m hoping a guide. A guide, yes. Or more people because I– It’s really dangerous. –don’t want to be the
only person paddling. I think that sounds
like a terrible idea. No, it’s really dangerous. Well, it can be, but it’s fun. And it’s exhilarating,
and you’re outdoors, and I’ve never been to Oregon. It seems like a fun thing to
do, which is usually, again, what people say until
they get a major injury. Right. But now, will you
rehearse the raft? I don’t think we have
rafting rehearsals. No? No? No, we’re going in cold. You’re just going to get in
a raft and go down a river. I’m sure there will
be a tutorial of sorts where they’re like, if this
happens, maybe do this. Right. And I’m really hoping there’s
a life jacket involved. But other than that, no, I
think it’s just kind of paddle and don’t fall out. And then, well, you don’t have
to paddle, because it’s rapids. You just go down. You have to steer. I think it stabilizes
you in some way. Yeah, and are you going to camp? Are you in a tent? There’s a whole– Yeah,
it’s a three day deal. We’re doing it up. There’s a camping element. I believe there’s a
mountain biking element. I don’t know why. This does not sound
like a vacation. No. Which is what it was
meant to sound like. This sounds like work. Where do the bikes come from? You’re going to bring
them on the raft? I think other people
are in charge of those. OK. I think those come on a van. Have you ever camped before? Yes. OK, so you have been camping? Yes. And you like that? I like it. Yeah, I grew up in Missouri. That was kind of a thing. First of all, it’s
relatively free. You just need to find someone
with a tent and some matches. Not to light the tent on fire,
hopefully to start a fire. Yeah. But yeah, so I spend a
lot of time outdoors, and I really like it. It’s part of why I
loved moving to LA, because being outside is such
a nice part of living here. Yeah, well, that sounds fun. When are you doing this, soon? Soon, yeah. So keep your eyes and ears
peeled toward the news. See if anything
horrible happens. See if anything happens to you. And you also taught
preschool for a short time. This is before you moved here? When I was In college, I had
a very weird kind of existence in college, because
most of my friends were waiters or
bartenders or stuff. But I was in the
theater program, so I had rehearsals every night. So I couldn’t work at night,
and I had class during the day. So I had a weird kind of
middle of the day opening for which to work. And I grew up with a single mom,
and I was always in daycare, after school programs,
all that kind of stuff. And there were never any guys. It was pretty much a
female-dominated profession. And so I went to the
woman who ran this place. It was called Kids Depot. It had a little red
train out in front of it in Columbia, Missouri. And I told her that,
and I said, it’s nice to have to
have a guy around. It might be nice for your kids. And I had long hair, and
I was an acting student. And she was like, this is going
to be a terrible decision, but I’m going to hire you. And I ended up working
there for three years. As a preschool teacher? As a daycare teacher, basically. Wow, three years? So I was essentially
like a human jungle gym, basically, because I’m a
giant to a five-year-old. Sure, you’re a giant to me. [LAUGHTER] And then I had to do art
projects and cooking stuff. That’s sweet. It was really fun. And it was also kind of
like being around kids is so energizing. Yeah, or draining. So coming from class– Or draining, one of the two. But I found it energizing. I found a lot of things
energizing when I was in my 20s that I now find
completely draining. But the idea was
that you’re getting as much as you’re giving out. And coming from
somebody like me who had such a history with
being in programs like this, it was like it felt fun
to give back in some way. That’s so sweet. I love that you did that. [APPLAUSE] Hi, I’m Andy. Ellen asked me to remind you
to subscribe to her channel so you can see more
awesome videos, like videos of me getting scared or saying
embarrassing things like “ball peen hammer,” and also
some videos of Ellen and other celebrities, if
you’re into that sort of thing. Rah! [SCREAMS] [MUTED] [MUSIC PLAYING] God [MUTED].

100 Replies to “Jon Hamm Was a Human Jungle Gym as a Daycare Teacher

  1. I love when people are like "Oh shit white water rafting!" when in New Zealand it's such a norm, I first did it when I was 7 with my school

  2. How i wish i could be on Ellen's show one day. I really really love her and her shows with passion.. God help me be on her show one day.

  3. gorgeous guy from bar… I like how Ellen was flattering and teasing John by repeating this several times.

  4. If you're on the Rogue River, make sure to stop at Patrick Warburton's cabin in Agness when you're done!

  5. Wow… city folk… White water rafting is scary? I first did it when I was like 10 or younger… come on man

  6. It's smart of him to keep his cup of water on the hollow table so that Ellen can't scare him if she had that in plan??

  7. I moved from Turkey to LA what are you talking about!! And I did not speak English at all… Okurrrt

  8. I do not get tired of hearing about Jon Hamm's difficult start to the road until his culminate success. I wish you Jon, an excellent and well deserved vacation. Enjoy it well and come back with the new turbines.

  9. I have the same schedule that Jon Hamm had when he was in college. Class in the morning, working at daycare in the afternoon, and rehearsal at night. Does this mean I'm on my way to starring in a movie with Jeremy Renner?

  10. Ooohhh mmm g. Just heard of this guy today and so IN LOVE with him. as a single mom I give him props for what he did… awesome.

  11. Don't blame Jon Hamm for being a late bloomer, the biggest Hollywood names born in the same year as him are Mark Wahlberg, Jared Leto, Ewan McGregor and Jeremy Renner, which let's be honest are all B-list movie star.
    Compare this with Brad Pitt born 1963, the same year as, Johnny Depp, Michael Jordan, Quentin Tarantino, Whitney Houston, George Michael

  12. I owned Kids Depot….he blazed a trail for me hiring GUYS – it made an impact on children in a very positive way. Congrats John, very important work that you did at Kids Depot. the best 25 years of my life!

  13. You can do everything right in any job interview and NOT get it. It is not just casting! Down to elusive chemistry and sometimes nothing in particular.

  14. Man if I went to college for acting and I would love to work with Jon Hamm and after shooting and wrapping up with the film of tv show I would love to talk to him I would pretty much be nervous admit it that I actually love his show MAD MEN and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and the film TAG.

  15. I know exactly what he means…I worked at a daycare when my kids were very young. They always roughhoused with me because all the other workers were girls and wouldn’t do that.

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