Why Orlando Bloom Turned Down Hosting SNL During Pirates Fame

Orlando Bloom Will Turner Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

If Lorne Michaels is out there listening, Orlando Bloom is now ready to host Saturday Night Live. Bloom is currently promoting his new Amazon series Carnival Row and talked to Howard Stern about how he turned down a chance to host SNL more than a decade ago.

Orlando Bloom was offered a hosting gig when he was promoting Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, the third movie in the franchise, which came out in 2007. At the time, Bloom was world famous as Legolas from The Lord of the Rings movies and then as Will Turner in the first two Pirates movies.

It was a big time in his career, but Orlando Bloom told Howard Stern (via EW) he wasn't ready to host SNL for a couple of reasons.

I was really insecure at the time. I was just like, partly my dyslexia, partly like that window of time where I couldn’t even … think straight and see the wood through the trees. I would love to [host] Saturday Night Live now.

Orlando Bloom, now 42, has spoken in the past about struggling in his 30s after having so much success in his 20s. Do you think he was too in-his-head about the bad reviews for the third Pirates movie to be willing to put himself out there to promote it on SNL? Because so much of SNL requires you to read from cue cards, he was also nervous that his dyslexia would get in the way. But it sounds like the biggest issue was that he just "didn’t have perspective." To explain what he meant, Bloom went all-in with a burning car analogy:

It’s like you’re in a burning car. When you’re in our business, you get into this burning car … and it’s like … you’re in the car and you’re like, ‘Wow, look at this, they love it.’ Then you go, ‘Fuck it’s hot. How the fuck … I’ve got to get out of this burning car.’ The reality is you have to be able to get into the burning car, know that you’re getting into a burning car, put the suit on, have all this gel so you don’t get hot and burned. ‘Yeah, I’m driving this burning car!’ Then you have to get out of the burning car, make sure you’ve got a support team to make sure that you’re safe and happy. Then you go, ‘Ok, cool, I’ll get back into the burning car when I do.' ... I was in a burning car and I just didn’t know how to get out and I couldn’t do Saturday Night Live.

So, if I'm understanding that right, he didn't have the right mindset or a solid support system around himself to handle the ups-and-downs of his early career. But now he has that protective gel and a good team, so when he gets back into the burning car of the Hollywood spotlight, he will be OK and they'll help him get out again. Or something.

Whatever he meant, he said he'd be down to host SNL now, if he ever got the call again.

Oh, in a heartbeat. I’d love to.

Orlando Bloom is now in his 40s and engaged to Katy Perry. He's in a very different place in his life than he was in 2007, which not only saw him in the later stages of his Pirates fame, but also fresh off a split with Kate Bosworth and starting a new relationship with supermodel Miranda Kerr.

Saturday Night Live tends to give hosting gigs to movie stars promoting a new film over TV stars promoting a new series. That's not always the case, but it tends to be how the NBC show leans. SNL Season 45 is starting September 28 without Leslie Jones but with Woody Harrelson as host. He'll presumably promote both Zombieland: Double Tap and Midway. Future hosts who have already been announced include Phoebe Waller-Bridge, David Harbour, Kristen Stewart, and Eddie Murphy.

I'd love to see Orlando Bloom host SNL with Katy Perry as musical guest. Book it, Lorne!

Gina Carbone

Gina grew up in Massachusetts and California in her own version of The Parent Trap. She went to three different middle schools, four high schools, and three universities -- including half a year in Perth, Western Australia. She currently lives in a small town in Maine, the kind Stephen King regularly sets terrible things in, so this may be the last you hear from her.