Saturday Night Live legend Billy Crystal dropped by Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show on NBC on Friday night to reprise a bit Crystal developed in which the mouths were cut out of famous faces on movie posters in order for Billy Crystal or another actor to speak through them. He explained that the premise of the bit was that people who were terrible at impressions could always cheat this way.
Billy Crystal and Jimmy Fallon christened the new version of this bit Magazine Cover Talk, and set it in the waiting room of a doctor’s office. Jimmy Fallon is known largely for being one of the most skilled impressionists on television today, and Billy Crystal has done his share of impressions over the years but is probably more widely known for creating original characters.
Variety was quick to point out that Billy Crystal and Jimmy Fallon used two of their magazine covers during the bit, and who can blame them? Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show is a ratings bonanza for NBC late night, largely driven by sketches and interactive games like Pictionary (and as the Billy Crystal romantic comedy classic When Harry Met Sally taught us, the comedy potential of Pictionary cannot be overstated) that star celebrities and are specifically designed to get picked up by websites such as this one and to go viral on the internet.
Jimmy Fallon is also known for cracking up during sketches Carol Burnett Show-style, and he nearly dissolved into giggles at the very beginning of the sketch when he realized how ridiculous it was that they had set the sketch to take place a week prior to the interview he’d just been conducting with Billy Crystal at his desk, yet they were wearing the same clothes.
Jimmy Fallon started off the sketch with a relatively milquetoast impression of Russian president (and former Prime Minister) Vladimir Putin. Billy Crystal immediately won the sketch by following that up with an eerily accurate impression of actor and former MSNBC talk show host Alec Baldwin.
Jimmy Fallon then did his standard impression of New York City businessman and brand licensor (tm Elise Jordan) Donald Trump, the Republican Party’s presumptive 2016 presidential nominee. Billy Crystal came back with another eerily accurate impression, this time playing comic actor, writer, and film director Seth Rogen, and completely replicating Rogen’s very distinctive laugh. Fallon also did impressions of Matthew McConaughey and Kim Kardashian West, and Billy Crystal did an amusing version of presidential contender Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) along with his standard Arnold Schwarzenegger impression.
Jimmy Fallon’s approximately three-and-a-half minute sketch was accompanied by a typically funny and congenial interview with Billy Crystal. Having a seasoned comedian as a talk show guest certainly makes the entire process easier on the host, and Billy Crystal never disappoints.
“I’ve never seen construction like this before. When they finish [New York City], it’s going to be fantastic.”
Billy Crystal and his wife, Janice, recently made local tri-state area news in the greater New York City metropolitan area by providing a grant to fund a career training program for young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 in Long Beach, New York. Patch reports that the program will provide career coaching as well as job placement services, counseling, transitional housing, and financial literacy education.
Billy Crystal’s new project will be offered via the City of Long Beach and the Family and Children’s Association, according to Long Beach Patch, and will be called Long Beach Ladders to Success. Long Beach City Manager Jack Schnirman spoke to the publication about the new program earlier this month.
“This mentoring and job placement program will go a long way in helping our residents who are not just looking to find work, but to chart a career path. Our community development team is engaging members of our community to identify opportunities and policy solutions through various means, including the Empower North Park initiative which aims to alleviate barriers and expand opportunities for our residents.”
Billy Crystal and his wife have two grown daughters: Jennifer, an actress, and Lindsay, a film producer. They have four grandchildren.
[Image courtesy of Paul Zimmerman/Getty Images]