Monday, April 15, 2024

SNL Lops Off Three More Players as Lorne Michaels Prepares for a Year of Changes


Three more “Saturday Night Live” cast members are exiting the show.

Alex Moffat has the longest tenure, arriving in 2016. When I ran into him earlier this summer it didn’t seem like Moffat was leaving, but after six years it’s time to go. He’s very funny and a good writer with plenty of things ahead of him.

I’m surprised Melissa Villasenor is leaving. She’s the only Latinx cast member and wickedly funny. Since the female cast takes longer to break through, and they’ve lost both Kate McKinnon and Aidy Bryant, I thought Villasenor would get a chance to shine. But the writing was on the wall and on social media. About a month or more ago she dropped any reference to “SNL” from her social media.

Aristotle Athari just never happened all season. He was either overwhelmed or not ready but he was barely on screen during his inaugural year. He’ll turn up elsewhere and surprise us all, I’m sure.

Also as i reported earlier last week, Cecily Strong will miss maybe the first three or four shows because she’s performing in “The Search for Intelligent Life in the Universe” in Los Angeles.

Kenan Thompson returns for his record breaking 20th season. So far “SNL” hasn’t announced its first fall date or the names of any hosts or musical guests. There’s a big push online to get Carol Burnett for host. The 89 year old legend has never been on “SNL,” which is a crime.

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.

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