Christopher Walken Politely Requests Less Cowbell, According to Will Ferrell

We hate to break it to you, but Christopher Walken doesn’t want your “more cowbell” jokes. The phrase, which manifested from the iconic Saturday Night Live sketch opposite Will Ferrell, is the one thing fans say to Walken all these years later and it’s kind of getting to him, according to Ferrell. Here’s the scoop.

Will Ferrell becomes part of the ‘five-timers club for hosting ‘SNL’

Will Ferrell and Christopher Walken on 'Saturday Night Live'
Will Ferrell as Gene Frenkle, Christopher Walken as Bruce Dickinson on ‘Saturday Night Live’ | Mary Ellen Matthews/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

On Nov. 23, Ferrell takes the SNL stage as host for the fifth time. He’s part of an elite list to earn the title of “five-timer’s club” and no, doubt will prove why.

Other notable celebrities, like Walken, have hosted even more than that. While it’s nowhere near Alec Baldwin’s impressive 17 times as host, Walken’s count is seven, giving him something to brag about against Ferrell’s count.

Some of Ferrell’s most memorable sketches throughout the span of his entire SNL career include Celebrity Jeopardy as host Alex Trebeck, his take on former President George W. Bush, sportscaster Harry Caray, or his infamous Spartan cheerleader, alongside Cheri Oteri.

There are many possibilities for Ferrell to bring the funny. But, he has one sketch in particular fans would always love to see more of, despite Walken’s 19-year annoyance with it.

Christopher Walken said the ‘SNL’ sketch ‘ruined his life’

The moment Ferrell’s name connects with SNL hosting duties, fans automatically think of the Behind the Music skit with Walken. Ferrell plays a member of Blue Öyster Cult and Walken is music producer, Bruce Dickinson.

The famous line, “needs more cowbell” is in reference to the band’s famous song in which Ferrell’s character played the cowbell. It wasn’t enough for Walken’s character, so with each take, he asked for more and thus, why everyone who’s ever seen the sketch repeats the phrase whenever possible.

According to Entertainment Weekly, Ferrell recently appeared on the Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon to speak on the now legendary skit.

“Here’s the crazy thing. I go to see Christopher Walken years later, in a play. I say hello to him backstage and he’s like, ‘You know, you’ve ruined my life,’” Ferrell said.

“‘People during curtain call bring cowbells. The other day I went for Italian food for lunch, and the waiter asked if I wanted more cowbell with my pasta bolognese.’ I think he’s really mad.”

He added that Walken “had a little smile,” suggesting it didn’t actually ruin his life. Instead, he might even get a small sense of pride knowing his two scripted words, “more cowbell,” inspired an entire generation.

Here are the projects Walken would rather you quote

It’s hard to imagine hearing “more cowbell” so often when you’ve also acted, sung, and danced your way into over 100 films and TV shows. However, this is Walken’s plight.

The actor’s IMDb page spans back to 1953 but his breakthrough role in The Deer Hunter at age 35 led to Annie Hall, The Dead Zone, Wayne’s World, Catch Me If You Can, and so many more.

That aside, Walken won an MTV Video Music Award for choreographing his dance in Fatboy Slim’s ’01 music video “Weapon Of Choice,” and he has a standing invitation to host SNL whenever he pleases.

It’s clear Walken has a lot of talent not so easily recognized, but Ferrell’s hosting duties must go on either way. The only question is, and forgive us, will there ever be more cowbell?