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TV Watch: Ian McKellen on ‘SNL’

March 17, 2002 at 9:57 pm by xoanon  - 

A BIG thank you to Roheryn for her work on giving us the details on Ian McKellen’s amazingly funny host job of Saturday Night Live. Take a look at almost 75 pics and all the great skits!

Saturday Night Live with Ian McKellen (IM from now on)

Start of show…IM enters stage dancing to SNL music, claps, waves to audience, very cheery. Audience cheering heartily. IM wearing button-up elveny bluegreen shirt, black pants.

IM monologue {standing on stage}:

Thank you, thank you, thank you ver much indeed. Well here we all are, and here am I hosting Saturday Night Live. Why, you might ask. I’m – and all thru these rehearsals I’ve been asking myself that same thing actually. Y’know, a classical actor used to doing Strinberg [?sorry I don’t know that one] and Chekov and Shakespeare – plays that have been around for centuries, and here I am performing work that’s only been around since yesterday afternoon.

No, honestly, they’re still writing some of the scripts right now. I just hope it’s not too obvious! People are always telling me I should do more comedy. Well this show will show them- they’ll never ask that again! {laughs} Well, you know…I mean…think: I could be sunning myself in Los Angeles waiting for the Oscars, or be at home in London seeing my 95-year old stepmother who I don’t get to see often enough, or I could be on holiday with my boyfriend in New Zealand – there’s a thought. But, no, I’m here, here in New York doing Saturday Night Live…basically, you know, it’s just vanity I suppose. But I love this troupe of players, this company, regulars, on SNL, especially that Jimmy Fallon – isn’t he cute {grins mischievously}?

Most hosts get around to thanking the casts at the end of the show – I think it’s worth thanking them right now because I need them on my side! {laughs} I’m not sure that they realize they’re a part of a very old theater tradition – it’s called Review. Did you know Maggie Smith, Dame Maggie, started off in Review when she was a kid? She’s still brilliant at one liners – if you’ve seen her in Gosford Park you know what I mean. And when Maggie and I were starting out, she dragged my hero, Laurence Olivier, to come and see me act in London, and subsequently he put me into his national theater company along with a young actor called Anthony Hopkins. And who would have thought that after all those years in the classics, Dame Maggie would end up being best know as the Harry Potter lady, Tony Hopkins known for eating people’s faces, and they’ve made me into an action figure! {laughs}

No no, I LOVE my action figures – I play with them all day long! {laughs} Anyway, it’s really really fun and great to be here, but I feel REALLY welcome. Unlike the St Patrick’s Day parade in New York City where they don’t exactly encourage openly gay men. They don’t seem to mind the priests though, do they, mmm? {deadpan look at camera} {hands on hips} Anyway, forget the parade, we’ve got a great show, and I’m going to have a ball showing you because my fav disco diva is here, Kilie Mignogue! Off we go, and we’ll be right back!

Did a number of skits; brief summary:

Versace skit: played Yves St Laurent (in fancy suit). Wanted to dance with the boys and watch the Oscars…played it very deadpan, was hilarious.

Irish cookbook author being interviewed on National Public Radio. Cookbook title: If You Can’t Stand the Heat, Get Out of the Hoosafadalawaladong [spelling?]

Hot Air Balloon Mystery Theater – played pipe-smoking Sherlock Holmes

The Ferey Muhtar Talk Show – played Mexican in red cowboy boots, cheesy mustache – looked like Burt Reynolds; subtly plays with crotch during entire skit

The Life and Times of Charles Dickens – beautiful skit – he puts on a one-man show while sitting at a table; wig/hat changes every few moments to portray 47 Dickens-related people.

The Comic Book Zone – plays the “local hero who’s the most successful Dr Who impersonator” – wears long scarf, hat, curly hair – really looks like Dr Who. At begging of “Give us your Gandalf!” he does the “Bilbo Baggins! Do not take me for some conjurer of cheap tricks! I am not trying to rob you!” line, breaking off giggling. Audience near hysteria.

And finally the best skit:

Weekend Update With Jimmy Fallon (hereafter, J) and Tina Fey

J and T do lots of other news…then…:

J: {Jimmy sitting at desk; Tina not on camera} Well, the Oscar race is heating up and here to offer her predictions is Oscar nominee Dame Maggie Smith, everybody!

{IM enters in hot pink long sleeved loose dress, wearing hideous gaudy pearl necklace, heavy makeup; wrist is limp and kept that way for nearly entire skit. IM sits at desk next to J, simpers. IM really hams it up through the entire skit}

J: Thank you. Dame Maggie Smith, wow.

IM: Thank you, Jimmy, aren’t you a dahling {eyes J up and down, leans over and caresses J on cheek} Look at your little suit, just like a little schoolboy, mmm?

J: Okay…Dame Maggie…

IM: …call me Maggs.

J: …ok, Maggs, uh, let’s talk about the Oscars.

IM: Yes lets. {making faces at camera as if checking reflection in mirror}

J: Who do you think’s gonna win for best actor?

IM: Well the winner will be Denzel Washington…and Denzel if you have any interest in getting it on with an experienced old dame of experience, give me a call {big cheesy grin}

J: OK, what about best actress?

IM: {frowning mock disapproval, nose in air; stiffly} Judi Dench, little Judi Dench, such a clever little Judi Dench, little clever chubby Judi Dench…

J: {interrupting} All right, all right…best supporting actess, who’s that?

IM: {in “of course” sort of way} Oh me whether I win it or not.

J: Ok that’s good! Uh, best supporting actor?

IM: Oh without a doubt Ian McKellen, Saint Ian, mmm {grins} They’ve got to throw that old queen a bone sometime.

J: {laughing} Oh, is he…gay? I didn’t even…

IM: {eyeing J up and down with great, um, interest}

J: ,…I didn’t know that…

IM: {still eyeing J} You’re not gay, Jimmy, are you?

J:{slightly flustered} Well no, but I…best picture?

IM: Oh who cares. By that time I’ll be getting as high as a kite in the toilet with Helen Mirren.

J: Well, are you gonna go to the afterparty?

IM: After parties I’d rather drink [something]. But wish me luck {leaning cheek close to J’s face}, mmm, little Jimmy Fallon, mmm?

{J leans over to kiss IM on cheek. IM suddenly turns to face J full-on and kisses him smack on lips. J pulls away in shock, laughing, flustered, straightening tie and trying to maintain composure. Audience roars. IM looks extremely pleased with himself, simpering at camera. Tina leans over to wipe lipstick off Jimmy.}

J: {smiling, trying to hold it together; IM no longer on camera} {to Tina} Maggie Smith should shave! {clears throat} Does this mean I’m knighted? {laughs} Or did I just get queened? Wow…

Posted in Old Special Reports on March 17, 2002 by

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