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Josh Brolin and Seth Meyers Look Back on "The Californians" Sketch Ahead of Brolin's Third SNL

Dune: Part Two's Brolin, who hosts SNL for the third time March 9, starred in the very first The Californians sketch with Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig.

By Samantha Vincenty

Dune: Part Two actor Josh Brolin visited Late Night with Seth Meyers ahead of his third stint hosting Saturday Night Live on March 9. As Brolin sat down with Seth Meyers—and immediately cheered on this week's guest drummer with The 8G Band, No Doubt's Adrian Young—the Late Night Host acknowledged the iconic range of characters Brolin's played in his career. The two also reminisced about a certain fondly-remembered recurrring SNL sketch from the Bill Hader era, because Brolin starred in its very first installment. 

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"Goonies holds up!" Meyers told Brolin, sharing that he was among many on a recent flight who were enjoying the 1985 adventure film starring a young Brolin, Sean Austin, and Ke Huy Quan. "And for a kids' movie, Goonies is insane."

Brolin said he feels the lasting impact of the film as people have shared the favorite with their own children and remember him in it.  "It's like nine generations later, and they're like, 'Oh, my God, that's the guy!' And I'm like..." he said, standing up to pantomime using a walker. 

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In the years since, Brolin has starred in hits like Sicario, earned an Academy Award nomination for the biopic Milk, and played Thanos, the most famous villain in Marvel movie history. Most recently, Brolin has portrayed Gurney Halleck in Denis Villenueve's Dune films. Yet Meyers wanted to talk about a project that Brolin played a pivotal role in way back in 2012, during Meyers' time at Saturday Night Live: The very first The Californians sketch.

Josh Brolin on Late Night With Seth Meyers Episode 1492

Josh Brolin starred in the first "The Californians" sketch during Seth Meyers time at SNL

"Talk about movies— there are some SNL sketches are just like movies," Meyers segued, pointing out that Brolin was in the original "The Californians" sketch when he hosted on April 14, 2012.

In what would become a recurring franchise starring Bill Hader, Fred Armisen, and Kristen Wiig, Brolin played a way-too-laid-back doctor who, like everyone in the fictional soap opera, is obsessed with L.A. traffic.

"If we're talking about the last 15 years of SNL, this is as good as it gets," Meyers said, holding up a photo of the sketch featuring then-cast members Hader, Wiig, Armisen, Vanessa Bayer, and Kate McKinnon with Brolin. Meyers was a cast member from 2001-2014. "And it was one of the great sketches, I think, for a Host to do, because it was so fun."

Brolin provided some background on how his hosting gig helped move "The Californians" from the table read to the screen. 

"You know that Bill and Fred, they used to do it at the round table. They never actually asked Lorne to do it," he said. "And because I'm the staunch Californian, they were like, 'This is the perfect time to bring it up.'"

Brolin, whose father is movie star James Brolin, grew up in Los Angeles, dryly joked to Meyers that when you watch the sketch, "I'm the only guy that has a different voice than everybody else, 'cause I thought everybody else would [bleep] it up."

"I do feel bad for, say, Europeans who watch 'The Californians' and think that's how they sound," Meyers said.

"But they do. Apparently, I'm the only one who doesn't know, from California, that we sound like this," Brolin said, erupting into his own interpretation of Armisen's "Californians" affect.

See the first "The Californians" sketch below, plus a few more—and watch Josh Brolin host Saturday Night Live with musical guest Ariana Grande on March 9.

The Californians: Stuart Has Cancer featuring Josh Brolin

The Californians: Stuart Has Cancer

The Californians: Runaway featuring Justin Bieber

The Californians: Runaway

The Californians: Wedding featuring Christina Applegate

The Californians: Wedding

The Californians: Thanksgiving featuring Jeremy Renner

The Californians: Thanksgiving