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“He was everything a cool guy looks”: Jon Hamm Credits Marvel Actor Paul Rudd for Helping Him Become $45M Hollywood Star as Top Gun 2 Star Nearly Gave Up on His Dreams

“He was everything a cool guy looks”: Jon Hamm Credits Marvel Actor Paul Rudd for Helping Him Become $45M Hollywood Star as Top Gun 2 Star Nearly Gave Up on His Dreams

Hollywood icon and Golden Globe winner Jon Hamm has had a busy year. One might be forgiven for thinking that the gods predestined Hamm’s success in Hollywood, what with his recent roles in Tom Cruise’s Top Gun 2 and Good Omens, his starring role opposite Jennifer Aniston in the award-winning drama The Morning Show, and his replacement of Chevy Chase in the Fletch franchise.

On Howard Stern’s show, the 52-year-old actor and former teacher revealed that his fame was anything but assured. In the interview, Hamm talked about his difficulties and major break, with Marvel actor Paul Rudd getting the credit.

Jon Hamm’s Struggle to the Top

Jon Hamm
Jon Hamm

Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Jon Hamm’s parents split up when he was only two. When Hamm was just 10, his mother died of colorectal cancer. Living with his father was difficult because he could not give Hamm the emotional support he required.

Jon Hamm hoped he could have had the chance to have adult conversations with his parents, particularly his mother because he had fond memories of his childhood despite his difficulties.

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The actor felt a feeling of community while at John Burroughs School, where he was an active member of the football and baseball teams. He then taught eighth graders how to act, a job he liked but ultimately quit to focus on acting full-time.

Jon Hamm, at the age of 25, took his overheating Toyota Corolla to the West Coast to pursue performing. He was short on cash and employment prospects, but he did have a connection to an up-and-comer.

Jon Hamm and Paul Rudd
Jon Hamm and Paul Rudd

Paul Rudd, a friend of Hamm’s from the Midwest, was the only person he knew with a successful Hollywood job. Rudd was his friend in the late 1980s, when he had “long Michael Hutchence hair” and a “Duran Duran jacket” and “was everything that you thought the cool guy from college looks like in 1988.”

“The one person that I knew who had a Hollywood career was Paul Rudd, who I knew from back in the Midwest. [We’d] become friends back in the late ‘80s when Rudd rocked “long Michael Hutchence hair” and a Duran Duran jacket. He was everything that you thought the cool guy from college looks like in 1988. He had just done Clueless and I think was going to do Romeo and Juliet. ….he gave me the guy’s [number] who was his first manager.”

Jon Hamm remembered spending many late evenings with Rudd and future famous broadcaster Joe Buck, also from the Midwest. They once crashed a bat mitzvah where Rudd served as a party DJ. Rudd went above and beyond simply inviting Hamm to his concerts. The Ant-Man actor even went as far as to give his first manager’s number.

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Jon Hamm’s Big Break

Jon Hamm finally got the boost he needed when he found a way to be represented. It landed him his first major part on the short-lived but formative television series Providence, which paved the way for Hamm’s subsequent success.

Jon Hamm in Top Gun 2
Jon Hamm in Top Gun 2

After that, Hamm had a recurring role in the four-season thriller The Division, which received high praise from critics. The character of advertising executive Don Draper on the critically acclaimed and critically acclaimed AMC series Mad Men, for which Hamm received a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor and an Emmy nomination, was his next big break.

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Despite his fame from Mad Men, Hamm says his Hollywood breakthrough came about because of Paul Rudd. According to Jon Hamm, Rudd’s friendship kept him focused and motivated so that he wouldn’t give up on his goals and pursue them.

Source: YouTube

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Written by Mabel Andrady

Mabel, aka MJ, is a FandomWire Sr. Writer, pop-culture fanatic, and an MA in Health Demography holder. When she's not indulging in her guilty pleasure of penning everything Hollywood, Marvel & DC, she writes academic essays on COVID-19 and HIV/AIDS. With 2500+ articles published online, she brings a unique twist to entertainment writing. A jack-of-all-trades, MJ enjoys movies, writes/acts in plays, writes music, and dreams of being a successful actress. She offers a fresh perspective, making her writing a must-read for those seeking knowledge and entertainment.