Wednesday, June 12, 2024

“Saturday Night Live” Casting News: Kate McKinnon Returns, Show Adds Three New Players Including First Asian Actor


“Saturday Night Live” returns for its 45th season with its star, Kate McKinnon, in place and returning. There were reports last spring that she might live, but “SNL” needs her at least through the 2020 election. She signed a one year deal. Next spring there will be talk again of her exit, but my guess is she’ll renew one last time. Let’s hope, at least.

“SNL” has lost Leslie Jones, who’s gone off to blaze new trails. She was an important addition five years ago because the show has always been light on African American comedians and actors. Eddie Murphy is the sole black star who really made it.

Jones is not being replaced by another African American hire. Instead we’ll get Chloe Fineman and Shane Gillis from the Groundlings. They’re also getting their first Asian player– first in 45 years! — in Bowen Yang, a staff writer who appeared in a sketch last March with Sandra Oh. Forty five years. Mind blowing.

No word on Alec Baldwin, if he’ll be back as Donald Trump. But my guess is he will be putting the orange make up on until Trump is out of office.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

Read more

In Other News