Kevin James Spills On The Photo Shoot For That Viral 'King Of Queens' Meme

The comedian recalled one photographer's pledge before the picture took off online 25 years later.
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Kevin James is opening up about what led to the viral photo of him shrugging while smirking on the set of “The King of Queens” 25 years ago.

The comedian, on Tuesday, told “The Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon that he remembers doing the photo shoot that led to the meme-worthy picture.

“When you first get a sitcom, you just listen to anybody. You’re just so happy to be there. And the photographer, he was just telling me to do goofy things,” James said.

“And he was like, ‘Smile. Now like you’re sexy, now like you’re shy, but now you’re kind of—’ and I got into this position where I’m like, ‘What the hell am I doing?’”

James added that he told the photographer to “bury that one” toward one picture.

“And he goes, ‘Yeah, no worries. That one won’t come back,’” James recalled of the 1998 promotional photo shot by Tony Esparza for the CBS Photo Archive.

“Twenty-five years later, this thing pops up.”

James, later in the interview, also reacted to several of the memes as Fallon displayed them on his program.

The meme has caught the eyes of Leah Remini, James’ co-star on “The King of Queens,” who took to social media last year to say that she “absolutely” loved it.

It was later used by Sen. John Fetterman (D-Pa.) after the Senate unanimously passed a formal dress code in September.

James himself also got in on the fun, writing on his social media page that he was “so happy” to find the picture which he used to promote a “Double Hands In The Pocket” comedy tour.

Fallon and James also joined forces earlier this week in a scripted bit about the meme.

James, in the bit, said he “can’t stop doing” the meme as he and Fallon come face-to-face with over a dozen people rocking similar shirts to the comedian in the picture.

You can check “The Tonight Show” bit about the meme below.

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