Will Ferrell Was a Mall Santa With Another ‘SNL’ Alum

Will Ferrell is more than just a comedy icon — he’s a Christmas legend as well. His work in the beloved holiday film Elf made him an icon for the younger generation. And to this day, many fans know Ferrell best as Buddy the Elf. But well before he was making waves for the Christmas movie, he was dressing as a mall Santa alongside one of his future Saturday Night Live co-stars. In a recent interview with Jimmy Kimmel, Ferrell opened up about the experience. 

What did Will Ferrell say about working as a mall Santa?

will ferrell santa
Will Ferrell attends Apple Original Film’s “Spirited” New York Premiere at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center on November 07, 2022 in New York City. | Cindy Ord/Getty Images,

In a recent interview with Kimmel, Ferrell shared he doesn’t have much interest in playing Santa Claus in a movie. That’s he’s had the opportunity to try on the iconic red coat for a short-lived gig as a mall Santa. Ferrell told Kimmel that during his time as a “struggling actor,” he dressed as Santa for four weekends in a row, while fellow comedian Chris Kattan was costumed as an elf. They were a mobile duo that traveled around the mall spreading holiday cheer, as Ferrell remembered it.

“We’d be like, ‘Hello, J. Crew, ho ho ho,’ ‘Merry Christmas, Sephora, how is everyone doing,’ and they got so sick of us, by the fourth weekend they’d be like, ‘Hi, Santa,'” Ferrell told the TV host. The gig was short-lived. And Ferrell and Kattan would both go on to become cast members on Saturday Night Live not long after.

Will Ferrell and Chris Kattan both rose to fame on ‘Saturday Night Live’

Ferrell began starring on SNL in 1995, quickly rising to fame as one of the program’s most popular stars. His no-holds-barred personality and willingness to tackle any sketch made him a prime candidate for many of the show’s more outrageous bits. And Kattan often acted right alongside Ferrell. The two introduced several popular sketches in the ’90s, including the beloved skit “The Roxbury Guys,” which featured two nerdy clubgoers, played by Ferrell and Kattan, getting rejected by women at nightclubs all around town.

The sketch became so popular that it was adapted into a feature film in 1998. A Night at the Roxbury starred Ferrell and Kattan, with the comedians reprising their roles from the sketch. Other notable Hollywood stars in the film include Dan Hedaya, Jennifer Coolidge, and Molly Shannon. The movie was a hit, solidifying Ferrell and Kattan’s spots in pop culture as major stars.

Chris Kattan would love to work with Will Ferrell on ‘A Night at the Roxbury 2’

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Of course, Ferrell went on to become a big movie star. After leaving Saturday Night Live in 2002, he was able to parlay his success into a series of popular movies, including Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, and of, course, Elf. Ferrell recently made another Christmas comedy, Spirited, with Ryan Reynolds.

As for Kattan, he has remained in the spotlight after leaving SNL in 2003. He has competed in several reality television shows as well as movies — but his real love remains comedy. As he revealed in a Behind the Velvet Rope with David Yontef podcast episode, he would love to reunite with Ferrell for a sequel to their hit film.

“That would be fun if there was A Night At The Roxbury 2,” he said. “That would be great to do. In fact, I think that would be a great idea. Honestly. I think it would be great to get me and Will Ferrell and Jim Carrey as a third guy. I think it would be a fantastic idea. They were the first three people that did it on SNL.” For now, there’s no word on a possible sequel. But there’s no doubt that fans of both Ferrell and Kattan would be up for it.