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Posts tagged as saturday night’s children

Saturday Night's Children: 2014 in Review

After three and a half years of highlighting the lives and work of SNL cast members, Saturday Night's Children finally wrapped up its run on Splitsider this year. From January to November, we took a look back at 22 former SNLers including original Not Ready for Prime Time Players John Belushi and Chevy Chase, deceased writers/cast members Michael O'Donoghue and Tom Davis, the lesser-known stints of Morwenna Banks and Dan Vitale, and powerhouse stars of the 2000s like Kristen Wiig, Bill Hader, Andy Samberg, and Seth Meyers. Here's a look back at the SNL graduates who helped close out [...]

Saturday Night's Children: Michael O'Donoghue (1975)

Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 39 years. In our column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member every other week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure.

It's been almost twenty years to the day since the death of Michael O'Donoghue, one of comedy's darkest, most demented figures and a major creative force behind National Lampoon magazine and SNL during their formative years. Dennis Perrin's 1998 biography of O'Donoghue attributes a quote to him: "Making people laugh is the lowest form of comedy." Indeed O'Donoghue's highest comedy goal, also in his own words — once [...]

Saturday Night's Children: Chevy Chase (1975-1976)

Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 39 years. In our column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member every other week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure.

As much as SNL's debut season cast needed to mesh and support each other during the early years, they also needed to set precedents for seasons to come — such as abandoning the show for wider Hollywood success. Chevy Chase wasted no time setting such a precedent, leaving the show not long after his very first season; he was originally hired as a [...]

Saturday Night's Children: Alan Zweibel (1979-1980)

Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 38 years. In our column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member every other week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure.

There are many paths to getting hired on Saturday Night Live, but Alan Zweibel — who served as an original writer in 1975 and spent a portion of the fifth season credited as a featured player — had one all his own. Zweibel struggled as a young joke-seller before finding the perfect comedy collaborators on SNL, giving way to some of the most [...]

The Eight Longest 'SNL' Cast Member Tenures

When Seth Meyers left SNL to host Late Night earlier this year, he was just shy of beating out Darrell Hammond's record as having the longest SNL player stint of all time with a whopping 14 seasons under his belt. Whether you view a lengthy SNL tenure as a badge of honor or sign of a performer overstaying their welcome, a glance at some of the longest-running SNL players — which mostly occupy the '90s era through current cast member Kenan Thompson — shows a group of talented impressionists, dependable utility players, and Weekend Update favorites of both the wild and low-key variety. Here's a look at the [...]

Saturday Night's Children: Tina Fey (2000-2006)

Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 39 years. In our column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member every other week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure.

After three and a half years and over 120 SNL cast member profiles, it's time to end this column the way it began — by highlighting one of my favorite women to ever call SNL home. She's best known for her time on SNL and 30 Rock, but for America's many young women who consider themselves awkward, frumpy comedy nerds, Tina [...]

Five 'SNL' Cast Members Who Were Also 'Daily Show' Correspondents

In its 40 years of scouting talent from The Groundlings, Second City, and standup clubs, SNL has never felt any competition in the major leagues of comedy star-making. When The Daily Show debuted on Comedy Central in 1996, however, Lorne Michaels and company finally met their match, with stars like Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert, John Oliver, Rob Corddry, and Ed Helms all carving out their niches on the mock news show. Over the summer these two worlds officially collided when The Daily Show poached SNL writer Michael Che and elevated him to onscreen status as its newest correspondent, only to see Che swap back to SNL to [...]

11 Standup Comedians Who Became 'SNL' Cast Members

In addition to the recent hiring of standup Michael Che as co-anchor of Weekend Update, yesterday SNL revealed some surprising hiring news with the announcement that young standup Pete Davidson has been added to the cast as a featured player. SNL has an unpredictable history with hiring standup comedians, and while many seamlessly stepped into the impersonation, sketch acting, and recurring character mold — see Eddie Murphy, Adam Sandler, and Darrell Hammond, to name a few — most of the show's standups-turned-players stayed true to their roots, often appearing on Weekend Update and finding ways to make sketch characters take on their own standup sensibilities to [...]

Saturday Night's Children: Tom Davis (1977-1980)

Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 38 years. In our column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member every other week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure.

Whether it's John Belushi, Gilda Radner, Mitch Hedberg, or this week's tragic loss of Robin Williams, the world of comedy has a long history of assigning instant legend status to beloved comedians who die too soon. Maybe it was because he was more of a writer than SNL cast member — or that he was the lesser-known half of recurring SNL duo Franken [...]

Saturday Night's Children: Jason Sudeikis (2005-2013)

Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 38 years. In our column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member every other week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure.

Whether posing as a nerdy father, late night newsman, or sporting a perma-grin as the red jumpsuit-wearing dancer on "What's Up with That?" during his SNL run from 2005-2013, Jason Sudeikis was the epitome of the silly jock with a heart of gold. He also played some of the most callous characters while being one of the most emotional behind-the-scenes performers, as seen [...]

Looking Back at the Nine 'SNL' Players Who Left Us Too Soon

When Jan Hooks — SNL cast member from 1986-1991 — died at the age of 57 last month, the show truly lost one of its stealthy greats. Like frequent sketch costar Phil Hartman, Hooks's incredible talent didn't need to call attention to itself, so it's only now, in hindsight and reruns, that the full measure of her brilliance is beginning to be calculated. Since SNL debuted in 1975, over 140 players have been in the cast, and nine have passed away from illness, drugs, or violence. Whether they leave us as beloved superstars with promising careers ahead of them or underappreciated and semi-forgotten talents with few recent onscreen [...]

Saturday Night's Children: John Belushi (1975-1979)

Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 39 years. In our column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member every other week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure.

SNL's first party monster legend was a Chicago boy born to Albanian immigrants — a short, squat, blue-collar popular kid whose fierce presence dominated everything from the high school football field to the improv theater stage and, during his final years, the silver screen. Many of the late John Belushi's friends and former collaborators have attempted to describe the man behind the SNL [...]

Saturday Night's Children: O'Hara, Hudson, Prager, and Wolf

With only a few names left in this series, this week we're highlighting four former cast members instead of one who, for different reasons, have been grouped together for a special edition of lesser known SNL players. Whether they quit the show before their first episode, left no trace of their history after leaving the show, or flew under the radar despite being co-head writer, these four players are both a mix of famous and unknown writers and performers whose connection to SNL often goes forgotten. Here they are, in no particular order:

Saturday Night's Children: Morwenna Banks (1995)

Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 38 years. In our column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member every other week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure.

While there are plenty of SNL cast members whose stints didn't last many episodes — see Laurie Metcalf, Dan Vitale, and Ben Stiller — British sketch and voice actress Morwenna Banks holds the record of the shortest repertory player tenure with a mere four episodes under her belt at the end of the show's twentieth season in 1995. Four episodes [...]