Belfast Telegraph

Jon Hamm: Mum made me an actor

Jon Hamm thinks there should be more music and arts programmes for children.

The 43-year-old star's mother Deborah and father Daniel divorced when he was two and he lived with his mum until she passed away when he was ten.

She was keen for him to get involved with projects outside of school, which is when he discovered his love of performing.

"My mother was always very interested in me being a well-rounded person and was constantly enrolling me in after-school programmes and extra-curricular activities," he told British magazine Marie Claire. "I think for the most part that was to get me out of the house - as a single mom, she wanted alone time - so she was like, 'You need to get out there, so go to theatre club.' I highly recommend that for any kid... In the US now, it's a sad afterthought. I wish we could go back to the good old days when schools had arts and music programmes."

Jon found fame in Mad Men, which began in 2007 and is due to end this year. Success came quite late for the star, who worked in a school first.

"I was an OK teacher. I was 24 years old. I don't think you're great at anything when you're 24, unless you're Bob Dylan," he said.

Jon has been in a relationship with Jennifer Westfeldt since 1997 and because they have been together so long, people are constantly asking when they will have children. It's not a question he can answer, although the actor is fascinated by society's obsession with youth.

"If you look at what's considered important in our culture, I'm on the very far end of the age range of that. Our culture places all the value on what 14-year-olds think is important. Just look at what makes money, look at music, look at movies," he said.

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