Saturday Night Live Creator Lorne Michaels told The New York Times On Friday, cast member turnover, which has seen eight comedians leave the series before the next season begins in October, was a result of the pandemic, and said season 48 would be a “year of reinvention.”
Michaels said the pandemic created a situation where “nobody can really leave, because there are no jobs,” but then the big cast “reached a point where we had a lot of people, and people weren’t getting enough time to play.”
Michaels denied the perception that the show is tougher on Republican politicians than it is on Democratic politicians, and said the past four years on SNL reflect a period “between the pandemic and the presidency” where “people were really scared.”
Michaels said that while four new featured players have been added to the cast, some mainstays will remain, including Colin Jost and Michael Che as hosts for the Weekend Update segment.
Michaels, 77, said he has “no plans to retire,” and that the show will be in great fest when it reaches its 50th season.
“There is a time to say goodbye, and there is a normal time for that, but the normal time has overlapped with the pandemic,” Michaels said.
The stars Eddie Bryant, Kate McKinnon, Pete Davidson, and Kyle Mooney left SNL after the season 47 finale in the spring. Earlier this month, it was announced that three other members of the cast, Melissa Villasinor, Alex Moffat, and Aristotle Atheros are leaving. It was reported on Monday that Chris Reed will not be returning. The turnover is the biggest since 1995, when almost the entire cast was new, according to times. That year, legends Will Ferrell, Sherry Autry and Daryl Hammond appeared. Four new featured players were announced last week: Marcelo Hernandez, Molly Kearney, Michael Longfellow and Devon Walker.
What to watch
SNL It premieres October 1, with host Miles Teller and Kendrick Lamar serving as the musical guest. Brendon Gleeson will host the October 8 show with guest musician Willow. Megan Thee Stallion will perform double duty on October 15.
Three more ‘SNL’ cast members shown leaving before season 48 after losing stars (Forbes)
‘SNL’ Adds Four New Featured Players After Their Exit (Forbes)