Adam Sandler opened up about some of the experiences that led him to become a succesful comedian, including memories of growing up in New Hampshire, in a “60 Minutes” segment that aired Sunday night.
The actor, who is promoting his critically acclaimed new film “Uncut Gems,” led reporter Sharyn Alfonsi on a tour of his childhood home in Manchester, N.H., where his mother still lives.
According to the segment, Sandler grew up the youngest of four children. An avid Little League baseball player, he grew up idolizing his father, a electrical contractor with a big personality who who spent his free time coaching his kid’s baseball teams.
Old photos show a smiling young Sandler, when the “only thing bigger than his hair was his confidence,” Alfonsi said.
“I was always very goofy-looking,” Sandler said. “I didn’t realize it at the time. I thought I was a kind of a stud. But looking back at it is pretty ridiculous.”
It was his mother, Judy, who built that confidence. The former nursery school teacher, while sometimes his harshest critic, is also his biggest fan, according to Sandler.
“My mother said how great I was all the time,” he said. “I started to believe her.”
His mother’s biggest gripe with the new film, so far, has been the explicit language.
“My mother didn’t teach me to curse and I didn’t teach him,” Judy Sandler said in an interview with Alfonis, turning to her son. “Where did you learn it?”
Alfonsi also got a tour of the site where Sandler worked his first job -- a local ice cream shop known as The Puritan.
“A Cherry Seinfeld’ and not a ‘Sandler!’” he said, spying a flavor bearing a fellow-comic’s name. “That’s disgusting.”
The segment also discussed Sandler’s shaky beginnings in show business. Just a few years after joining the cast of Saturday Night Live, he was asked to leave the show.
“It was the rare moment in the history of the show where the network and the critics were on the same side,” SNL Executive Producer Lorne Michaels said in the clip. “Everybody agreed that this group of people weren’t funny.”
It was Sandler, of course, who had the last laugh. Since leaving SNL, he as made more than $4 billion at the box office, he said.
“Uncut Gems”, which also stars Julia Fox, Kevin Garnett, and Idina Menzel, will make its debut on Christmas Day.Abigail Feldman can be reached at [email protected].