Jimmy Fallon's Rules for Success

 
Credit: Photograph by Joe Pugliese

In this month’s cover story, the 40-year old host of The Tonight Show talks about his relatively smooth rise to the top job in comedy, his time at SNL, and how a little diplomacy can go a long way. Here are Fallon’s 8 tips for success, gleaned from the magazine profile.
 
1. Start Young
Jimmy’s dad would tape SNL for the kids, skipping over the dirty bits. Jimmy and his sister, Gloria, were known to do “Two Wild and Crazy Guys” at family gatherings.

2. Show Some Respect
In the case of The Tonight Show, this means to make good with Jay Leno. “Jimmy gets it,” Leno says. “Jimmy is a comic. He’s not a comedy writer. He worked little crappy clubs, dragging the guitar around and having drunks throw shit at you. And that’s why he and I have a bit of a bond. It’s almost a father-son kind of thing.”

3. Shut Up and Listen
“Most people in show business think they know everything,” says Leno. “They don’t really listen to the other person. They just wait for the other person to stop talking. ‘Respectful’ is the best word I can use for Jimmy.”

4. Don’t Hold Grudges
It was Fallon who ended the 18-year ban by Johnny Carson of Joan Rivers from NBC. “No one’s banned anymore,” says Fallon. “This is such a silly thing.”

5. Try Try Again
Jimmy’s big break almost came in 1997 at the New York’s Comic Strip when he performed with Lorne Michaels in the audience. “I just bombed,” Fallon says.” I could tell. My manager could tell. This might have been my lowest point ever.” His second break, over a year later, killed.

6. Drink with the Boss
Fallon recalls getting the following advice from producer Marci Klein: “‘After every [SNL] show, go over to Lorne and you thank him for the show.’ And I did. I thanked him after every single show. And by the third show, he probably got tired of me coming up. He was like, ‘Sit down, come have a drink.'”

7. Keep the Competition Close
Fallon hijacked Stephen Colbert’s acceptance speech at the Emmys to tell Colbert’s team, “You guys are the best!” Many of these writers will be heading to CBS when Colbert he takes over from David Letterman next year, where they will attempt to out-funny Fallon, and compete for ratings.

10 Jimmy Fallon Style, Fashion & Looks

RESET FILTERS
Jimmy goes for a preppy look in a crewneck sweater over a button-down shirt.

 

Crewneck Sweater

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy Fallon wears an understated, stylish cardigan and jeans with colorful sneakers.

 

Running Shoes

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy wears a classic tie in a shining baby blue hue.

 

Classic Solid Tie

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy stays warm in New York in a festive red plaid scarf.

 

Wool Scarf

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy looks like a gentleman in his black suit and bow tie.

 

Men’s Suit

Jimmy Fallon

 

 

Jimmy goes for a preppy look in a crewneck sweater over a button-down shirt.

 

Crewneck Sweater

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy Fallon wears an understated, stylish cardigan and jeans with colorful sneakers.

 

Running Shoes

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy wears a classic tie in a shining baby blue hue.

 

Classic Solid Tie

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy stays warm in New York in a festive red plaid scarf.

 

Wool Scarf

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy wears a blue blazer over a plaid button-up and khakis.

 

Blazer

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy looks like part of the rat pack in a stylish white suit jacket and black pants.
 
Jimmy loves to wear plaid! Here he dons a plaid button-up with sneakers at the Teen Choice Awards.

 

Button Down Shirt

Jimmy Fallon