This week, Adam Sandler appeared on Norm Macdonald’s video podcast, Norm Macdonald Live, and reminded all of us how hilarious he is.
First off, if you’re not aware of Norm’s video podcast on VPN, I have no idea what you’re doing with your time on the internet. Norm’s as hilarious as he’s ever been, and if you don’t believe me, shut your foul mouth for half a second and go watch a couple clips from his channel.
Norm managed to snag his old SNL pal for his latest episode, and it was an hour of pure joy. If you’re a fan of comedy, do yourself a favor and watch the whole thing. If you’re one of those people who thinks they’re too busy to watch anything longer than ninety seconds, a) get over yourself, b) here are some of the best nuggets from their conversation.
- He doesn’t want to host SNL - “Why should I? I don’t know how good it would be. I’m slow now…” I can’t blame him for this. When a well-respected cast member leaves the show, you end up romanticizing their time there and only remembering their best work. Whenever an SNL-alum comes back to host the show, there are such high expectations, it never really lives up to the hype. For someone like Sandler, who has a dominant film career, he doesn’t really have anything to gain from hosting SNL, and most likely doesn’t want to deal with thousands of people declaring that he no longer has “it.”
- He has no plans to revisit some of his classic roles like Billy Madison or Happy Gilmore - Norm makes a good point, explaining that both roles end up with the title characters having grown up and matured. Not sure what more of the story there is to tell, and you gotta respect Sandler for not trying to shoehorn in some ridiculous sequel that doesn’t make any sense.
- Norm actually got wasted for the scene in Billy Madison where he’s supposed to be drunk - If you’ve seen the movie fifty times like I have, I’m sure you remember the scene where Norm, who plays Billy’s best friend, wakes up in a drunken stupor to tell Billy a story, only to realize Billy hasn’t been there for weeks. While reminiscing about the film, Sandler recalls how Norm tried to get in character by actually getting shit faced for the scene. Norm ended up passing out on the lounge chair, and was abruptly woken up when he got a bucket of ice dumped on his face.
- Sandler originally wrote the two best friend roles in Billy Madison for Norm and his real best friend from NYU, Allen Covert, but when Covert auditioned, the executives said that he had “dead eyes,” and “wasn’t fat enough,” so they gave it to Mark Beltzman.
- Sandler once saw Milton Berle’s cock, and Norm once saw golfer John Daly’s – Sounds about right.
- Writing the Hanukkah song took forever because it was before computers – Norm and Sandler tell a story about the writing of the Hanukkah song. It was written collaboratively with a bunch of people at SNL, but this was before readily available internet. So, whenever they came up with a celebrity they weren’t sure was Jewish, they’d yell to their writing assistant, “hey, find out if so and so is a Jew!”
If you grew up idolizing SNL in the 90s like I did, you’ll definitely appreciate the slew of stories that come from their conversation. It’s rare to see Sandler in such a relaxed conversation. The closest we get are his late night talk show appearances, but those often feel forced, and he doesn’t have real history with the host the way he does with Norm. It makes you pine for the Sandler of yesteryear.
It’s no longer an interesting or noteworthy observation to say that Sandler’s movies have fallen off significantly over the past couple years. People seem to be genuinely confused as to how someone who created some of their favorite comedies of all time, seems to have basically given up. In my estimation, it’s not that Sandler can’t create like he used to, I just think that he’s shifted his target audience.
Grown Ups, Blended, Just Go With It, Grown Ups 2, Jack and Jill, Hotel Transylvania… he stopped making movies for you and me a while ago, and is now focused solely on making movies for his kids. The rare R-Rated comedy that he does star in (That’s My Boy, Funny People), isn’t something that he wrote. For the record, I still defend Funny People, although it’s definitely a bit long, and not a typical Sandler movie.
I’m hoping that with the recent subpar performance of Blended, Sandler will finally get back to his roots, and start making the types of movies he used to. After I went to see Grown Ups opening weekend, I swore I’d never let him betray me ever again, but who am I kidding… I just can’t quit him.