Before Jon Hamm was throwing back office cocktails as Don Draper on “Mad Men,” he was mixing them as a bartender at parties held by Kelly Lynch and her husband, “Magic City” creator-writer Mitch Glazer.
“We hired Jon Hamm as a bartender for every party we had at our house,” says Lynch, who stars in the upcoming Starz drama set in 1950s Miami. “He was the most gorgeous and adorable guy we’d ever met. All of the women would be lined up at the bar like alcoholics just to see him shake his martini shaker.”
Lynch says it wasn’t just the women who were taken with Hamm. Her young daughter was also smitten. “We’d have these parties and we’d be like, Where’s Shane? And she’d be standing at the bar drawing pictures of Jon pouring drinks for people.”
Hamm has made no secret of his earlier less glamorous jobs. In addition to tending bar, he also moonlighted as a teacher, a writer, and, as he confessed in a recent interview – a set dresser in the porn industry. “Essentially, I had to move furniture around sweaty, naked people,” Hamm said of the pre-fame gig. “It wasn’t a great job but the money was useful. I had to get by – I wanted to be an actor.”
Lynch admits she and Glazer always wondered why such a charming, talented guy like Hamm wasn’t getting the work he wanted. When “Mad Men” took off, Lynch says she and Glazer were thrilled. “It’s just Crazy Hollywood,” she says of his ascent to stardom. “As soon as somebody gets a job then he’s the greatest thing ever. But someone has to have the guts [to hire that person].”
As for bubbling comparisons that have been made between “Mad Men” and “Magic City,” Lynch dismisses them as “lazy.” “They’re different worlds and they’re different storylines,” she says, noting that “Magic City,” with its focus on the life of a charismatic, successful hotelier (Ike Evans, played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan) with ties to the criminal underbelly is more akin to dramas like “Boardwalk Empire” and “The Sopranos.”
That said, Lynch wouldn’t be opposed to a crossover episode between the two series. More specifically, she’d like to see a romantic storyline between her character Meg, Ike’s wealthy ex-sister-in-law, and Don Draper. “I think Don comes over to Meg’s house one day. He’s like, ‘I’m done with all those Betty’s and everybody else. I just want to hang out with Meg,'” she jokes.
Well, she certainly has Glazer’s ear if she wants to get that ball rolling for Season 2!
Go Behind the Scenes of the Making of “Magic City”:
“Magic City” premieres April 6 on Starz, with a special preview airing on Friday, March 30 at 11/10c.