Late Night with Seth Meyers premieres tonight—which means it’s the perfect time to learn a little bit about the Weekend Update alum.
1. He’s a poker shark.
Meyers won the third season of Celebrity Poker Showdown in 2004. In the first game, one of his opponents was fellow SNL cast member and future Weekend Update co-host Amy Poehler. He then went on to the championship game and he beat David Cross, Steve Harris, Jeff Gordon, and Dave Navarro. Don’t expect him to brag though. He claimed, “When ‘Celebrity’ is in front of [the title], that means 'worse.'”
2. He’s from the same place as Sarah Silverman and Adam Sandler.
Though Meyers was born in Illinois, he grew up in Bedford, New Hampshire. Sarah Silverman is also from Bedford. Adam Sandler was raised in the neighboring town, Manchester. Meyers grew up watching Adam Sandler on television and thought, “Well if that guy’s from New Hampshire and on TV, that’s probably the last guy from New Hampshire who’s going to be on TV for the next 50 years.”
3. He joked to President Obama about Osama Bin Laden the day before Bin Laden was killed by Navy Seals.
At the 2011 White House Correspondents’ Dinner, Meyers joked, “People think Bin Laden is hiding in the Hindu Kush, but did you know that every day from 4 to 5, he hosts a show on C-SPAN?” President Obama chuckled along, one day after he had ordered the raid on Bin Laden's compound that had yet to be announced.
4. He’s in Donald Trump’s book.
Speaking of the 2011 Correspondents’ Dinner, Donald Trump was less amused by Meyers’s jokes than Obama was. In Time to Get Tough: Making America #1 Again, Trump wrote, “A third-rate comedian named Seth Meyers (somebody who in my opinion had absolutely no talent) got up and spoke. He was nervous, shaking, and sounded like he had marbles in his mouth. He made a crack that Donald Trump’s candidacy was a joke or something to that effect.”
5. His brother was on MADtv.
Seth’s brother, Josh Meyers, was a MADtv cast member for two years. He then went on to play Randy Pearson, Topher Grace’s replacement on the last season of That 70’s Show. Both Josh and Seth have also played love interests on The Mindy Project. Seth promoted his brother’s episode by tweeting, “My hilarious brother Josh will be hanging with @mindykaling on #TheMindyProject tonight! #Taller #BetterHair”
6. He lived in Amsterdam for a year.
After Meyers graduated from Northwestern University, he moved to Amsterdam with his brother, where they both joined Boom Chicago, an improv comedy troupe. He often cites his time working overseas as helpful, particularly in learning to avoid pop culture references as comedic crutches. Meyers’s later SNL co-star Jason Sudeikis also got his start with Boom Chicago.
7. He did impressions of Russell Crowe, Hugh Grant, and David Arquette for his SNL audition.
Meyers auditioned for the show in 2001, which explains his impersonation picks. His first show as a cast member was the infamous post-9/11 episode.
8. He loves comics.
Meyers is a huge fan of comic books. He has named Batman, Justice League, Hawkeye, and Locke & Key as some of his favorites. Meyers has been able to break into the superhero genre himself; he and his former SNL co-worker, Mike Shoemaker, created The Awesomes, a series that airs on Hulu.
9. He read 800 Weekend Update jokes every week.
As SNL head writer, Meyers would read jokes proposed for the upcoming episode’s Weekend Update the night before the show aired. At that time, the writers had around 800 jokes compiled for him to read through. He would then help to pick a top hundred before they would later be whittled down to a mere 20 jokes for the actual show.
10. His mom taught him French in middle school.
Hilary Meyers taught French at an elementary school in Bedford, New Hampshire for almost 30 years. Seth was one of her first students, but he wasn’t exactly a straight-A student. He once explained, “I didn’t mind having my mom as a teacher. It was really fun. I just wish I could have been a better French student.”