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Posts tagged as snl

Good Neighbor's Nick Rutherford Joins the 'SNL' Writing Staff

The one member of Good Neighbor to be left out of last year's SNL hirings has now rejoined his friends on the NBC sketch show. The Comic's Comic reports that Nick Rutherford has officially joined the writing staff for SNL and has already begun working on content for the 40th season alongside his fellow Good Neighbor members Beck Bennett, Kyle Mooney, and director Dave McCary. Here's what Rutherford had to say last year on The Poundcast podcast when asked about the possibility of him being brought on the show later:

"I mean, that's all that's ever talked about is like, 'Oh, we gotta get you out here. [...]

'Grantland' Profiles 'SNL' Legend Phil "The Glue" Hartman

"Here's why it’s difficult to properly appreciate Phil Hartman. Because his characters were 20 percent droid. Because he reminded you more of your dad than your best pal. Because Hartman’s biggest gift was a kind of comedic graciousness, which he used to hide the show's seams and to make other funny people look good. As the writer Steve Lookner put it, 'How many people can you say that about on Saturday Night Live?'"

- Grantland examines the life, talent, and career of SNL legend Phil Hartman in a new feature out today called "The Glue."

'Grantland' Examines the Mellowing Lorne Michaels Empire

"But those who thought a severe housecleaning was in store this summer for the upcoming 40th season have been surprised; there was no bloodbath, no mass firings, none of the seismic upheavals of the past. Only four cast members were voted off the island once the 39th season ended, and some insiders believe this departure from precedent can be traced to changes in Michaels's demeanor, a mellowing evident since, roughly, the late 1990s."

- Live from New York co-writer James Andrew Miller examines the past, present, and future of the Lorne Michaels empire in a new feature for Grantland.

Don Pardo, the Iconic Voice of 'SNL,' Dies at 96

The iconic voice of Saturday Night Live has passed away. News broke last night that Don Pardo, who worked as SNL's announcer since the show's debut in 1975, died in his home of Tucson, Arizona at the age of 96. Pardo's voice is synonymous with SNL's opening credit sequence, and Lorne Michaels told the New York Times that "every year the new cast couldn't wait to hear their name said by him." When asked what SNL will do without Pardo, Michaels said: "I don't know what I'll do. It won't be the first time I've thought of it, and I've never had an answer."

Earlier in [...]

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 [...]

An Updated 'Live From New York' Goes Inside the Last 12 Years of 'SNL' History

If the update of Live from New York from journalist James Andrew Miller and TV critic Tom Shales succeeds in one thing, it’s disproving the perennial, cliched criticism that Saturday Night Live is no longer funny or relevant. The additional 200 pages added to this already-hefty volume are a revealing reminder that the most recent years of SNL have been just as memorable as the eras long past.

Covering the period from 2002 to the present, the update takes on the show’s engagement with recent politics, the rise of Lonely Island, and the internet’s effect on both the players and the general reception of the show. It features interviews from [...]

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 [...]

Read Some New Excerpts from the Updated 'Live from New York' Book

The new and extended version of Tom Shales and James Miller's SNL oral history book Live from New York isn't out until September 9th, but in the meantime THR has released a few exclusive excerpts from the book all about the show's more recent political satire, from how Tina Fey's Sarah Palin was born to why Robert Smigel's last TV Funhouse segment was rejected to Fred Armisen and Jay Pharoah's Obama impersonations. Here's Horatio Sanz on the opposing political sensibilities of former head writers Jim Downey and Seth Meyers:

I don't think the show itself has ever let its freak flag fly in the last 20 [...]

Track the Average 'SNL' Cast Age with This Handy Graphic

Did you know that the post-Seth Meyers SNL cast is the first to all be born after the show's premiere in 1975? Did you also know that the current cast has the youngest average age since 1986? Or that the oldest cast ever was just five years ago in 2009? You can learn these things and more thanks to a new infographic made by writer/comedian and Splitsider contributor Ramsey Ess, which will come in handy during all your age-related SNL debates this fall.

Click through for the full infographic:

Jesus, You're Funny: 'Black Jesus' and the Long History of Comedic Messiahs

Wherever Aaron McGruder goes, controversy follows. Black Jesus, McGruder's new live-action Adult Swim show starring Gerald "Slink" Johnson as the title character, debuts tonight amid criticisms from Christians of what they view to be blasphemous material, based not on screenings of full episodes but on footage from an extended trailer Adult Swim posted on July 18.

McGruder's last show, the just-recently-ended Boondocks, offended practically everybody. Conservatives objected to The Boondocks' raunchy material, progressives found the show to be misogynist and homophobic, a few of the show's satirical targets didn't take kindly to being satirized and threatened to sue either McGruder or Adult Swim, and Boondocks viewers were offended [...]

Alison Rich Hired as a Writer at 'SNL'

The debut of Saturday Night Live's 40th season is just around the corner, and the show has hired a new writer to its staff with the addition of Alison Rich. Rich got her start at UCB in New York, won the UCB NBC Diversity Showcase in 2012, and recently moved to Los Angeles to perform in the CBS Diversity Showcase as well as on the UCBLA Maude Team Tut. She also won the IFC "Out of the Box" development deal at the New York Television Festival last year for her web series Incognito co-created with current Late Night writer Andrew Law, and she appears in the upcoming Elizabeth [...]

Darrell Hammond Says He'd "Be Honored and Thrilled" to Take Over Don Pardo's 'SNL' Duties

In the wake of iconic SNL announcer Don Pardo's passing, the show now has the tall order of hiring a replacement to announce the cast's names at the start of each episode. While Pardo's timeless voice and presence can't be replicated, longtime cast member Darrell Hammond has come pretty close while filling in for him on several occasions and recently spoke to Grantland all about working with Pardo over the years and whether he'd consider taking over the job. Here's what he had to say about developing his Pardo impression:

I had a couple problems with it: The first is the strength of his voice. I remember [...]

Amy Poehler: "My Whole Life Changed Once Don Pardo Said My Name"

"My whole life changed once Don Pardo said my name. I will really miss that kind and talented man."

- In a short but sweet statement for The Wrap, Amy Poehler remembers SNL's legendary announcer Don Pardo.

Brooks Wheelan Talks About His Hiring and Firing from 'SNL'

"I feel like I was hired because they hired so many new cast members, and I feel like I was let go because they hired too many new cast members. So I can't really fault them. That's part of the reason I was there and that's part of the reason I was let go. … They do their own stuff and they clearly know what works."

- Standup Brooks Wheelan discusses his recent firing from SNL in a new interview with The Wrap, in which he says he's looking forward to living a more "Forrest Gump life."