Jay Pharoah on ‘SNL’s Diversity Issue: “They Need to Pay Attention”
With the addition of six new cast members this season, all of whom are white, Saturday Night Live has come under fire for its lack of diversity over the past couple weeks. Jay Pharoah, one of two black members of the 16-person cast, weighed in on the matter during an interview with theGrio:
“They need to pay attention. Her name is Darmirra Brunson…Why do I think she should be on the show? Because she’s black first of all, and she’s really talented. She’s amazing. She needs to be on SNL. I said it. And I believe they need to follow up with it like they said they were going to do last year …
It’s one of those things that’s hard. Some people choke up. Some people burn their bridges by saying things they shouldn’t say either. You just have to be very political about your delivery, what you say, and your performance. You’ve got to be on point. Everybody has to like you and want you to win. If they don’t like you, it’s a wrap.”
SNL hasn’t had a black female cast member since Maya Rudolph departed in 2007. Darmirra Brunson, who Pharoah suggests adding to the show, is a cast member on Tyler Perry’s OWN show Love Thy Neighbor. Like Pharoah, she got her start via her popular web videos.