Jimmy Fallon Recalls What Made Him Break During Famous 'Cowbell' Sketch on 'Saturday Night Live'
During his days on Saturday Night Live, Jimmy Fallon gained a reputation for frequently breaking character and laughing during sketches - - perhaps most famously in the legendary sketch "More Cowbell."
On Wednesday, Robert Pattinson sat down with Fallon on The Tonight Show to promote his new Western comedy, Damsel, and Fallon opened up about the iconic "More Cowbell" sketch, and why he could barely get out a line.
While discussing Damsel, which is one of Pattinson's few forays into comedic acting, the 32-year-old star said, "There is something about trying to be funny that is absolutely terrifying."
"Don't I know it!" Fallon quipped. "I come out here every night and try."
After Pattison mentioned that his favorite comedy movie (or at least in his "top three of all time") is the 2001 slapstick mafia comedy Corky Romano, starring Fallon's former SNL co-star, Chris Kattan, that led Fallon on a walk down memory lane to perhaps their most infamous collaboration.
"The thing that I became known for [on SNL] is that I laugh during sketches," Fallon shared, bashfully, before opening up about his most famous break in "More Cowbell."
The legendary bit -- which was a parody of VH1's Behind the Music docuseries -- starred Fallon, Kattan, Will Ferrell, Chris Parnell and Horatio Sanz as the members of the classic rock band Blue Oyster Cult, as they record their 1976 hit single, "(Don't Fear) The Reaper," under the questionable guidance of music producer Bruce Dickinson -- famously played by guest host Christopher Walken.
Aside from Walken's now-iconic line ("I got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell"), the sketch is popular for how nearly every single cast member could barely contain their laughter over Ferrell's manic energy and overenthusiastic cowbell playing. Although no one lost it more than Fallon, who could barely even get out his line.
"Will was hitting the cowbell, and his shirt was coming up, and I had, like, one line," Fallon recalled. "And right before I was supposed to say my line, Chris said something like, 'What's wrong with you?' And he was just messing around with Will, and he knocked his glasses off."
"Then Will looked at me, and I saw the eyes of, like, a crazy person," Fallon said. "Then I just started laughing and I totally broke. I had one line in the whole scene, and I just totally messed up my line."
Fallon said he was lightly reprimanded after the sketch, explaining, "[They said], 'Dude, you can't laugh.' And I go, 'But it was funny.' And they said, 'Yeah, but you're in the scene! You can't laugh at yourself!'"
Fans can see how Pattinson handles a comedic role in the darkly funny Damsel -- co-starring Mia Wasikowska and Robert Forster -- when it hits theaters on June 22.
Damsel also made our list of the most anticipated movies of the summer. Check out the video below for a look at some of the other films we simply cannot wait to watch.
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