‘SNL‘ star Jason Sudeikis is profiled in ‘Men’s Journal’s’ August 2012 issue, on newsstands Friday, July 13. The straight-talking funnyman, who began performing at the famed improv school Second City (which produced ‘SNL’ legends John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, and Bill Murray), talks about his blossoming movie career, relationship with actress Olivia Wilde, and suburban Missouri youth. At 36, Sudeikis’s career is at an all-time high: In addition to his ‘Saturday Night’ gig, he’s featured in the forthcoming comedies ‘The Campaign,’ ‘We’re the Millers,’ and ‘Movie 43,’ in which he plays an obnoxious Batman who cock-blocks Robin at a speed-dating event. But no matter how much he may want to move on to the next level, leaving the show will be hard, as he explains to Josh Eells.
• On ‘SNL,’ Sudeikis specializes in playing the straight man – an earnest, sometimes befuddled foil to the zany antics of Fred Armisen or Kristen Wiig. “It’s always been my favorite kind of character,” he says. “A straight man, written correctly, allows for just as many laughs as the clown.” Sudeikis says his trick is to kind of put himself in the audience’s shoes, to look around the stage like, “What’s going on here? Do you see what these people are doing?!” As he explains, “The whole goal is to make it look easy.”
• Like most people who’ve been at a job for nearly a decade, Sudeikis has mixed feelings about ‘SNL.’ “It’s an amazing job and a horrible job,” he says. “You really do serve the show. It’s just like playing in a community college. Everybody knows they’re not going to be there forever. Even the coach wants to go to a D-I school.”
• Laboring over a sketch till six in the morning for three days straight – only to see it get cut in Saturday-evening dress rehearsal – frustrates Sudeikis. “It takes a lot out of you,” he says. “We start from scratch every week. If you allow yourself to enjoy only the product and not the process, I don’t know if it’s worth it. You could dump all your heart and soul into it and get nothing in return.”
• Still, no matter how much he may want to move on to the next level, leaving the show will be hard. “I’ve left places before,” he says. “I left Second City. I’ve left schools. I’ve left relationships. This is very, very different. Goodbyes are tough.”