Feeling nostalgic while quarantined? Dust off that VHS tape from 1993 and relive The Sandlot 25+ years later. It’s a classic afterall. Go ahead and recite a few of its iconic lines, look back on the Summer of 1962, mouth the word for-ev-er over and over again, but first turn your attention to this article because Patrick Renna, aka Hamilton ‘Ham’ Porter, is back Baby (Ruth)! Renna, also widely known for his roles in Son-in-Law and The Big Green has kept busy since fully embracing his token one-liner as a teen, and recently launched back into the spotlight with his variety show “You’re Killing Me with Patrick Renna” on YouTube.
It’s only fitting that the title of his channel/show would be named after his infamous catchphrase from his breakout role all those years ago. Why reinvent when you can reminisce! But don’t let his extensive on-screen personas fool you, the man behind Ham, the redhead, power-hitting, showoff from the coming-of-age comedy has grown up to be quite the opposite of his loudmouthed character on The Sandlot.
Renna, now a father, husband, and all around awesome dude, was kind enough to answer a few hard-hitting (but not really) questions about his new show, which features interviews, funny videos with former co-stars, and a competition to name his unborn baby!
Time to revisit your childhood obsession…
MCKENZIE MORRELL: You recently released your YouTube variety show “You’re Killing Me,” tell us a little bit about that journey and what prompted you to start a variety show on YouTube?
PATRICK RENNA: I had been planning to do this show before the madness happened. YouTube is a great platform to do a Variety Show of sorts. Being on movie sets through most of my childhood, I missed out on pop culture, so I am interviewing celebrities, co-stars, and friends to discuss their childhood obsessions. This way, at the same time, I can catch up on what I missed out on. So, the plan was a weekly interview, vlog, and third video where I have a little more fun with sketches, cooking failures, etc. When the quarantine began, I decided to launch anyway and do the videos from home. When the world opens up again, the show will open up and grow with it!
MM: Using only 3 emojis, describe your variety show to the readers.
MM: Are you technologically savvy or was there a learning curve figuring out how to record, get good audio, etc.?
PR: I’m decent at it, but there is, of course, a learning curve. I acted in and produced a film back in 2015 called Bad Roomies. My producing partner and the director from that film are very close friends of mine. They started a company that produces YouTube channels. So, we teamed up, and they do all the tech. I’m lost without them. They complete me.
MM: You have a great line-up of guests coming on the show, who were you most excited to reconnect with?
PR: Yes, I’m really looking forward to interviewing all of them and will get to those as soon as the quarantine lifts! During the quarantine, I’m releasing zoom interviews with my fellow Sandlot cast. Very excited about that!
MM: Obviously you’re well-known for your role in a little movie called The Sandlot. My sister and I used to watch it all the time growing up, big fan, what would you say was your biggest takeaway from working on that project? I assume it changed your life a bit since 25 years later we are all still talking about it!
PR: The Sand…? How do you pronounce that? Never heard of it. Ah yes, The Sandlot! I remember.
My biggest takeaway is how much of an honor it is to be a part of the film. Actors perform to create an effect on audiences for years to come. That’s why we do it. So, for me, I feel very privileged to have been part of a film that did that. When three generations come up to you and say they watched it on VHS, DVD, Laserdisc (OK no one actually says Laserdisc) and now digitally, it’s pretty special.
MM: Aside from The Sandlot, what would you say was your favorite movie you did as a child? Son in Law was another one of my favorites… but I’m sure you have so many memories from all the experiences over the years.
PR: I would say Son-in-Law would answer that for me. The experience of Son-in-Law was the polar opposite of Sandlot. I was the only kid, a bunch of adults, completely different humor. Pauly Shore, Carla Gugino, Lane Smith, Mason Adams, Cindy Pickett, and the rest of the cast were amazing to work with, and of course Steve Rash was an incredible director to have for my second film.
MM: Do you recall/still have a favorite line from The Sandlot? Throw it at us… besides the obvious “you’re killing me small!”
PR: Top three after You’re Killin’ Me Smalls:
“I’m bakin’ like a toasted cheeser!”
“If my dog was as ugly as you, I’d shave his butt, and teach him to walk backwards.”
“Is that your sister out there in left field? Naked? She’s naked you know… You think she’d go out with me?”
Those were from memory so I hope I typed them right!
MM: You have a new little one coming in a month or so and you enlisted the help of your viewers to name your son… have you gotten any good suggestions from putting it out there to the Worldwide web? Any contenders you want to share… I’m throwing in Asher, Crew, and Fitz into the virtual suggestion box.
PR: Ooh, those are nice! I really like Cameron & James & Liam. It’s so hard this time for some reason! May have to name him when we meet him!
MM: Other than navigating “You’re Killing Me” during this COVID-19 pandemic, how are you staying busy (and sane) during quarantine? Any new hobbies or skills you’ve acquired during this troubling time.
PR: Well, I have been doing a lot of cooking, gardening, and home renovations. Putting all these #fails on the channel, though! Between that and getting everything ready for Liam Cameron James Maxwell Renna, life is a crazy blur!
MM: Name 3 things that fans might not know about you.
– I love golfing. I used to be decent, but now I don’t really have time for it.
-I’m a crier. I coined the phrase, “Neck Tears” after watching The Notebook.
– I make the best meatballs this side of the Mississippi. I use my Italian Grandmother’s recipe. I make them every year for the boys during our fantasy football draft. They melt in your mouth. I think I could even beat Gordon Ramsay in a meatball cook-off. That’s really the only thing I can cook though…
MM: I like to throw in my signature question into all of my interviews– you ready for things to get strange? If you were to construct a donut based on your personality in real life– what kind of donut would it be and what toppings would be on it?
PR: WOW! Nothing weird about this question. The answer is just the simple Krispy Kreme original glazed donut. But 12 of them.
Simple and delicious, just like me… OK that did get weird.
MM: Anything else you would like to add for our readers?
PR: Check out the channel You’re Killing me with Patrick Renna. Stay safe, and I can’t wait till I can give you all a big hug again!