Pop Culture

'Tonight Show' fan travels Europe with Jimmy Fallon cutout, hoping for internship

Jimmy Fallon is traveling all over Europe — or at least, an 8-inch cardboard cutout of him is.

A hilarious Instagram account, @jimmyfallonstudiesabroad, sees the beloved "Tonight Show" host's paper likeness paragliding, taking gondola rides and enjoying other adventures.

The account was created by Northeastern University student Halle O’Conor, who’s hoping to score an internship at "The Tonight Show." O’Conor got the idea from her mother, who once took trips with a "Flat Stanley" (a paper doll based on a popular 1964 children's book featuring a little boy who is flattened by a book shelf, and travels across the country through the mail due to his two-dimensional shape).

“I was really just trying to think of a good way to make myself stand out when applying,” O'Conor told TODAY.com via email. “I figured that while I’m abroad, this might be a funny way to get [the show's] attention, while hopefully making people laugh.”

O'Conor, who began her time abroad on Feb. 2 and is returning home in May, plans to continue the project throughout her stay in Florence, where she's taking classes in communication studies and Italian at Lorenzo de Medici School.

Of course, the sight of O'Conor's unlikely traveling companion has prompted some funny reactions — from fellow tourists more than locals.

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"Two different times, tourists have come up to me with their companions and asked if they could take a selfie with the Jimmy doll," O'Conor said. "My second weekend abroad, I went to Switzerland. While I was there, a girl came up to me and said, 'Hey, someone told me you were the Jimmy Fallon girl! I saw your Instagram on my "popular" page. I love it. I’ve been showing everyone I know.'"

Cardboard Fallon wears a variety of creative outfits, from swim trunks to a monk's robe. O'Conor asked a family friend to help Photoshop different outfits on Jimmy, resulting in 15 versions of the doll — and she's in the process of making another 10.

“I spent a few days trying to think of any and all possible outfits that I could see Jimmy wearing while traveling around Europe, and I picked about 15 of my favorites.” O’Conor wrote, adding, "As funny as the outfits I have are, I already want to add new versions."

While O'Conor has yet to receive a response from "The Tonight Show" — or Fallon himself — she's received positive feedback since starting the Instagram account.

"A lot of my friends from home were really supportive immediately, and some thought I was a weirdo, but now they think the account is hilarious," she said.

O'Conor has been a huge "Tonight Show" fan since she was in ninth grade.

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"Watching talk shows has always been an easy way for me to relieve stress from everyday life," she explained. "Hearing about others people’s lives and the funny things that people go through is comforting."

She wants to encourage everyone to pursue their goals, regardless of how out-of-reach they seem.

“I believe that putting yourself out there, taking a risk and working hard will only open more doors,” she said. “It’s hard sometimes to push yourself outside of your comfort zone, but you have to take a leap of faith and go after even your craziest dreams.”

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