'Mad Men' star Jon Hamm is to direct the opening episode of the fifth series.

The actor told TVLine.com: "The wheels have officially been set in motion to make that happen.

"It's a very exciting challenge that I'm looking forward to with a mixture of utter fear and excitement."

Hamm said that working as a director on the series had been in his mind for some time.

"It helps to have people you know and trust surrounding you. We’ve been fortunate enough to have very little turnover not only in our cast but in our crew," he said.

Hamm's co-star John Slattery also directed an episode of 'Mad Men'.

"I watched Slattery do it, and he handled it with such grace and ability and ease," said Hamm.

"I figured if he can do it, ****, I can do it too."

Production on the fifth series is due to begin in August.