Adam Sandler Reflects on First 'SNL' Appearance


| LAST UPDATE 06/21/2022

By Lily Tipton
Adam Sandler, SNL, Young
Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

As arguably one of the most successful comedy icons of all time, it's hard to remember that once upon a time, Adam Sandler was a nervous newbie in the comedy industry. But it's true. Back in 1990, a twenty-three-year-old Sandler was anxiously preparing for his first appearance on Saturday Night Live. Now with hundreds of awards in his name and multiple blockbuster movies listed on his resume, the actor-comedian can finally look back and reminisce on the early days of his career...

As part of the promotion for his Netflix movie, Hustle, Adam sat down with IMDB for a segment titled "How Well Does Adam Sandler Know His IMDB Page?" When asked who was the guest host the night of his first SNL episode, he remembered clearly that it was Tom Hanks. He quickly followed up that confident answer with a truthful behind-the-scenes reveal. "I remember gasping for air, that I was so scared, and that I was going to faint. And I remember loving Edie Brickell that night (the musical guest). Man, that was just probably the coolest night of my life with just saying, 'It's official, I'm on Saturday Night Live.' Because I was on air." Prior to this on-screen appearance, Sandler had been working for the show as a writer, desperately waiting for his moment in front of the cameras. 

Tom Hanks, SNL Host
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While it now seems almost amusing to think of Sandler getting nervous around Hanks, Adam was pretty much an unknown figure in comedy at this point in his career. Although Tom Hanks was also then not the star he is today, with this SNL episode airing before the release of his biggest films, Forrest Gump and Sleepless in Seattle, Hanks had still made his mark in Hollywood through movies such as BigTurner, and Hooch.

Looking back on Adam Sandler's nerve-wracking experience on SNL serves as a lesson for all. He fought through the uncomfortable experiences only to come out on top as one of the highest-paid, most beloved funny guys of our time! Check out his latest movie, Hustle, on Netflix now.

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