Alec Baldwin Almost Sprained His Jaw Doing His Donald Trump Impression on SNL

Saturday Night Live - Season 42
Alec Baldwin as Trump. Photo: Will Heath/NBC

Just as Tina Fey’s impression of Sarah Palin on SNL has become iconic since the 2008 election, Alec Baldwin’s tottering duck-faced Donald Trump will also live on. On Election Day, Baldwin went on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show to discuss the mechanics of putting together his Trump impersonation for Lorne Michaels and company. “This is an exaggeration of his masticating every word. I almost sprained my jaw pushing my lower jaw forward to talk the way he does and say Putin,” Baldwin said. “Do I sound like him? Kind of. But I think what you get is an essence of him being very feral.” And while most impressionists retain a certain love for the people they impersonate, it was hard for Baldwin to conjure up that sort of affection. “I don’t hate Trump, but he’s not somebody I admire,” Baldwin said. “You just watch him and try to see him, like a caricaturist who draws.” 

Since he didn’t consider himself a natural impressionist, Baldwin practiced a lot in the mirror. “I would sit in a room while they were doing my makeup,” he said. “And probably 30 or 40 times I would sit there and go Grab them by the blank. Grab. Grab. And try to get his enunciation.” As for the writing, the writers’ room just had to wait for Trump to say something. “Trump is supplying them all the material that they need.

You can listen to the full interview here:

Alec Baldwin Almost Sprained His Jaw Doing Trump