Channing Tatum's hilarious and refreshingly honest AMA: "SNL was by far the most terrifying thing that I've ever done"

Ask Channing Tatum anything — the answers are often funny, sometimes weird, always honest

By Erin Keane

Editor in Chief

Published June 17, 2015 11:39AM (EDT)

Channing Tatum        (Reuters/Lucas Jackson)
Channing Tatum (Reuters/Lucas Jackson)

Channing Tatum is a national treasure. During the lead-up to the hotly-anticipated "Magic Mike" sequel next month, he stopped by Reddit's Ask Me Anything forum this afternoon and proceeded to be the best sport ever, opening up about his biggest fear in front of the camera (it's not dancing naked), his junk's nickname, and the weirdest place he's ever pooped. The sillier the question, the more he seemed to go for it. Channing Tatum, for embracing the true spirit of the AMA, we salute you. Here are the best revelations from today's conversation:

He has no idea what “Jupiter Ascending” was about, either:

Q: Jupiter Ascending? What was that?

“Great question. I have the same one to myself.”

… or Shia LaBeouf, for that matter:

Q: I've heard you're good friends with Shia LaBeouf. What do you think of his recent motivational speech? Did he bring you to tears and inspire you to chase your dreams?

“I did see it and if I understood it I might be able to reply with my own response but I'm not sure I actually understood it.”

He has an odd favorite Disney character:

“I like the broom from Fantasia.”

… a very odd favorite TV character:

“it's really hard to not want to be Joffrey on Game of Thrones.”

... and a weirdly sweet nickname for his junk: 


He loves Chili's:

“Hello Channing Tatum! This is something I've always wanted clarified since it happened...were you ever in Sea-Tac airport at the Chili's restaurant looking for a beer but ID-less? I was the one working there who had to make the difficult decision as to whether we could serve you or not. It all ended with a picture of you giving each of us a peck on the cheek, myself included. It's still one of my favorite stories to tell so I hope I wasn't just duped by a very convincing look-alike.”

“That absolute was me. Because I love Chili's. And no one believed me that i got into an airport without my id. I just wanted a beer and some chicken crisps, and i actually couldn't get either of them for a while, because i remember you guys didn't have chicken crisps either! what's a Chili's without chicken crisps?”

... but he will not lie to you about how he stays in shape:

“Oh man. If you eat it and it makes you happy you probably shouldn't have it. And if you do it and it sucks you're probably doing the right thing. But you can't have one with out the other. A lot of people just work out and don't actually diet and they wonder why they aren't getting the results they want, and some people do the exact opposite and wonder the same thing. i really think you have to do both.”

He will, however, give you advice about how to deal with ADD:

“You know it's a really difficult thing to talk to as a broad answer type thing because everyone's on a spectrum of ADD and I kind of refuse to call it a disability. Some people really need drugs to help them, and others could maybe go on a different route. So it's really tough. Whatever you do don't look at it as a disability and hopefully whatever is helping you understand it will show you the great things about how and how you can use it to your benefit and not just feel like you have some curse upon you.”

And yes, he gets nervous in front of the camera …

“Yeah, I do get nervous to act, it kind of depends on what it is really. Doing SNL was by far the most terrifying thing that I've ever done, because there is a lot of reading involved, and I don't read that well out loud. I get terrified and freeze up. So it really depends on what kind. If i'm really super prepared and I'm off book, I'm not nervous. There's no wrong way to do it, just different ways to do it, because you never know what is going to work.”

… but he's a fighter: 

Q: Would you rather fight a Danny Devito sized John Stamos or a John Stamos sized Danny Devito? You're both naked.

“Can i just fight a Danny devito sized Danny Devito because I think I could take him and I would be on top or I could just use him as a spinner as I'm assuming we're going to have sex after we fight if we're naked.”

He even has a plan for the zombie apocalypse:

“Crossbow, straight up, and I'd want an army of ninja chimpanzees that crush people all around me. Or I would just go to Sandra Bullock's house as I'm sure she has all that stuff because she's dope and kick-ass.”

Turns out he can survive a lot of things that would take down a lesser man:

“I just went to Iceland and tried to do a small expedition across the glacier and we didn't make it. We had to be emergency evacuated as there was a white out blizzard which I got to take a poop in. It actually freezes before it hits the ground.”

… but he totally knows how to relax, too:

“Oh man. I love Pinterest. Swear to god. Just to not think about all the shit I have to do or what's going wrong, I just go and look at Pinterest.”

By Erin Keane

Erin Keane is Salon's Editor in Chief. She is also on faculty at the Naslund-Mann Graduate School of Writing at Spalding University and her memoir in essays, "Runaway: Notes on the Myths That Made Me," was named one of NPR's Books We Loved In 2022.

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