Jon Hamm has an excellent (if slightly morose) interview with Variety this week ahead of Sunday’s premiere for the second part of the last season of Mad Men. I’ll be watching on Sunday, will you? I’m with Mad Men to the bitter, drunken end. But Hamm’s headspace these days is “what comes next.” And I’m sort of sad to say that Hamm really does seem to be begging for the next big thing, to make the legit jump to films in a larger way. You can read the full Variety piece here. Some highlights:
Playing Don Draper: “Playing this guy does not come without its own difficulties. It’s not fun to live in this guy’s headspace year after year… the darkness in Don has not abated, it’s gotten worse year after year. It’s relentless. And it can be hard on you as a person. I love coming to work; I love the people I work with. But it’s been rough.”
His sudden celebrity was hard: “I think I’m a pretty regular person thrust into incredibly irregular circumstances. It’s weird to get super-famous, super-fast. It’s really hard. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not the hardest thing in the world. It’s not performing heart surgery or breaking big rocks into little rocks. (But) it takes a lot out of you emotionally.”
On never winning an Emmy: “The minute you start crying about not winning awards, it seems a little weird. I’m in a very good group of people who haven’t won. I’ll live.”
His acting capital: “I’m afraid I’ve spent my good acting capital doing silly, nonsensical things. I hope I’ll get another chance to play a part as deep and varied and emotional and real as Don was.”
He’s not yet a movie star: “It’s hard to pick roles, honestly. There’s a certain strata of the Hollywood atmosphere that I’m decidedly not in — it’s Bradley Cooper, Pitt, Affleck, Clooney, Damon. I’m not a proven box office draw, I haven’t won an Oscar. I’m a guy from a TV show a lot of people like. I feel like a very capable actor, but I’m also looking for the thing that will make me feel fulfilled and challenged. If there’s a role I want, and they say, ‘Matt Damon’s interested,’ it’s totally legitimate. I would cast Matt Damon over me, too!”
The internet: “You want to know what’s wrong with you, just Google yourself. The most hateful, horrible things will come up. It’s anonymous, with no accountability. And it all kind of hides under the rubric of free speech.”
The rumors: “Jen and I aren’t married, and that’s something people seize on all the time. They ask, ‘When are you having kids?’ I said it to Tina once, ‘Are you going to have another kid?’ and she said, ‘When is that OK to ask?’ And she’s right. It’s such a personal question and so horribly presumptive. It’s (like) asking, ‘When are you and your husband going to f— again?’ I know, the more I talk about the Internet, the more I sound like an old man standing on his lawn shaking his fist.”
Variety also includes a quote from Hamm’s friend Bryan Cranston, who says that Don Draper was and is a more difficult role to play than Walter White, and that Hamm should win the Emmy this year, breaking the drought. I do think it’s a travesty that Hamm NEVER won an Emmy for Don Draper, but I also feel like… the show won Best Drama a bunch of times. That really is honoring the whole show and the whole cast.
As for Hamm trying to figure out his place in the food chain, there’s no direct quote about this, but I get the feeling that Hamm really is trying to make a larger film career happen. And in the meantime, he’s just doing smaller parts on Netflix projects and the like. While I think Hamm has what it takes to be a real movie star, I also think he shouldn’t discount jumping into another TV show. It wouldn’t be the end of the world for him if he was *JUST* a great TV actor, you know?
Photos courtesy of Peter Yang/Variety.