10 Things You Didn’t Know About Steve Carell

Today, Steve Carell is best remembered for his role as Michael Scott on the US version of The Office. But he has a storied career spanning over 30 years. Although he is a household name today, that wasn’t always the case, and his life has had its share of highs and lows. Here are 10 things you didn’t know about Steve Carell.

10. Acting Wasn’t His First Career Choice

The Big Short Steve Carell

credit: Paramount Pictures

Like many other Hollywood actors, this wasn’t Steve Carell’s first career choice when he was a child. Instead, Steve Carell always saw himself becoming a lawyer, even going to school to study law before falling in love with acting and deciding to pursue it full-time. 

9. Steve Carell Dreamed Of Being A Hockey Player

The Office Michael Scott Hockey

credit: NBC

Although Steve Carell expected to become a lawyer, his dream was to become a professional hockey player, and has been extremely dedicated and passionate about the sport since a young age. In fact, Steve Carell made it onto his college hockey team, calling himself the LeBron James of Rec League Hockey.

8. He Was His Wife’s Teacher

Steve Nancy Carell The Office

credit: NBC

Before falling in love with and marrying his wife, Nancy, Steve Carell was once her acting teacher. The chance encounter came after Nancy applied for improv acting lessons that Steve Carell just happened to be the instructor for at the Second City Training Center. Nancy would go on to utilize these skills in Saturday Night Live, and Steve’s love of improv would become part of Michael’s personality in The Office. 

7. Steve Carell Is A Businessman

Steve Carell Jimmy Fallon

credit: NBC

Although the character of Michael Scott might be carefree with little long-term ambition, Steve Carell has plenty of ambition. Carell is a businessman that owns numerous companies as well as having a diverse stock portfolio. Steve and Nancy purchased the Marshfield Hills General Store in Marshfield Hills, Massachusetts, in 2009. In addition to the usual general goods and food items found in the store, Marshfield Hills General Store also stocks its own range of jams, as well as plenty of merchandise for The Office.

6. His Job Before He Was Famous

Steve Carell Curly Sue

credit: Warner Bros

Before becoming the successful Hollywood actor that we know today, Steve Carell worked as a USPS mail carrier but quit after just seven months after his boss told him he wasn’t very good at it. Following this, Carell began acting in a touring children’s theater company and starring in musicals such as Knat Scatt Private Eye and TV commercials for the Brown’s Chicken restaurant chain.

5. His Princeton University Graduation Speech

Steve Carell Princeton

credit: Princeton University

Despite being a famous comedian, he was invited to Princeton University’s graduating class of 2012. He prepared a very witty and impactful speech that made sure to make the students inspired and happy at the same time. One of the most famous lines in his speech was, “Do something kind, make someone laugh, and don’t take yourself too seriously.”

4. He Broke Up With His Wife…In A Movie

Steve Carell and Nancy in The Office

credit: NBC

Steve Carell and his wife Nancy starred in a movie together, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, which saw the two break up in the film. At the beginning of the movie, after discovering that the world will end in three weeks, Nancy’s character leaves Steve’s after seeing that he wasn’t concerned and shrugged off the short amount of time the pair had left together.

3. His Head Did Set On Fire In Bruce Almighty

Bruce Almighty Steve Carell Fire

credit: Universal Pictures

Steve Carell’s role as Evan Baxter in Bruce Almighty made him a breakout star, and his career has only gone from strength to strength ever since. In a deleted scene, Carell’s head was set on fire. Using a gas line, the movie’s producers ignited a four-foot flame behind his head. Thankfully, he was using special gel to stop his hair from catching fire, but it was a live practical effect rather than added digitally in post-production so it certainly carried a level of risk that would make any actor hesitant.

2. David Copperfield taught him Magic

David Copperfield Steve Carell

credit: New Line Cinema

To make the magic more realistic in the movie The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, Steve Carell had some tutoring sessions with David Copperfield, a celebrity magician. In exchange for being taught, Steve Carell swore never to reveal the secrets of how the tricks are performed. 

Steve Carell Wasn’t The First Choice To Play Michael Scott

The Office Michael Scott

credit: NBC Universal

Before they landed with Steve Carell for portraying the iconic Michael Scott in The Office, Paul Giamatti was the first actor in the minds of the producers. Also, Hank Azaria and Martin Short were top candidates to play the regional manager of Dunder Mifflin. Although all of the other options are fine actors, the show wouldn’t be the same without Steve Carell, and we’re not sure if another actor could have made the character quite his Steve did. 

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