Late-night hosts are particularly good at digging up embarrassing tidbits from stars’ pasts, whether it’s an old Clearasil commercial or a grainy ad for meat. On Tuesday, Jimmy Fallon managed to unearth Don Cheadle’s old high school yearbook, and flipped through it with him on air.
First stop: A portrait of a young Cheadle, complete with dramatic lighting, a piano, and a saxophone strap. “You had a lot going in this one photo,” Fallon noted.
The next photo featured Cheadle posing with a bunch of fellow theater kids. Fallon asked what play it was from, but Cheadle responded that it was obviously a “mime tree.” Fallon also found a photo of the Miles Ahead star playing saxophone in the school band, which reminded Cheadle that he once had the choice between a music scholarship and an acting one.
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“I kind of knew that I didn’t have the discipline to do what these guys over here did,” Cheadle said, pointing to Tonight Show house band The Roots. “I was also in Colorado, with lots of winters, so I think I made a weather choice. I said I’m going to go to L.A. and Cal Arts, and that’s where I ended up going.”
“You made the right choice,” Fallon said. “I am very thankful, we are thankful. You’re one of my favorite actors.”
Watch the full clip below.