Jimmy Fallon Admits ‘Late Night’ Hosting Duties Almost Didn’t Happen: ‘NBC Didn’t Want Me’

Jimmy Fallon’s hosting duties began almost 10 years ago but the star has now said the whole thing almost didn’t happen.

Fallon, 44, who started on “Late Night” in 2009, revealed all as he gave a talk at the New Yorker Festival.

The presenter said, according to Vulture: “NBC didn’t even want me. I remember them saying, ‘Really, Jimmy Fallon? His movies are terrible.'”

Fallon made the comments at the New Yorker Festival (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for The New Yorker)
Fallon made the comments at the New Yorker Festival (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for The New Yorker)

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Fallon then credited “Saturday Night Live” creator Lorne Michaels for bagging him the job: “But Lorne was like, ‘Don’t worry, he works well and plays well with others.’ Like I was a kindergartner.

“I remember having to go to three or four dinners with NBC, trying to convince them I was the guy. And then finally Jeff Zucker was like, ‘Are you sure? This is a lot of work.’ I was like, ‘Yes, I’m sure.’”

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Fallon added that the same thing happened with his house band the Roots when he started hosting “The Tonight Show” in 2014.

The actor, who first appeared as a cast member on “Saturday Night Live” in 1998, shared, “NBC didn’t want the Roots. They were like, ‘The Roots are too urban,’ or something.

“I went, ‘You’re totally wrong. Do you know these guys? Go see them. Have you seen them? These guys have played with everyone from Jay Z to Tony Bennett. There’s no band that exists like them at all.’”

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