“Saturday Night Live” is officially coming back for another season, however the show will look a little different than it did last season.
It was announced Monday, “SNL” will return for season 48 on October 1 with new episodes following the following two Saturdays, on October 8 and October 15. There is still no news on who will host these episodes or who the musical guests will be.
The show has been struck with some major blows recently, with some of its current and former cast members claiming the show should be canceled, and with some of the show’s most popular cast members deciding to leave and pursue other opportunities.
Cast members Alex Moffat, Melissa Villaseñor and Aristotle Athari announced their decision to leave, as well as Aidy Bryant, Pete Davidson, Kate McKinnon and Kyle Mooney, who have been on the show for quite a while and have become fan favorite players.
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Aside from the comedians who appear on-screen, there is also a shakeup behind the scenes, as longtime producer of the show, and Ben Affleck’s ex-girlfriend, Lindsay Shookus is leaving the show after 20 years.
Returning cast members include Emmy Awards host Kenan Thompson, Heidi Gardner, Mikey Day, Andrew Dismukes, Chloe Fineman, James Austin, Punkie Johnson, Bowen Yang, Michael Che, Colin Jost, Ego Nwodim, Chris Redd, Sarah Sherman and Cecily Strong.
During an appearance on Charlamagne tha God’s “Hell of a Week” series, Thompson claimed the show should probably end once creator Lorne Michaels retires, adding it would be a good time to do so after the 2024-25 season, as it would be the show’s 50th season on air.
Michaels created the show in 1975 and tapped Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Gilda Radner, Chevy Chase, Jane Curtin, Laraine Newman, Garrett Morris and George Coe as original cast members. He has acted as showrunner for every season with the exception of five between 1980-85.
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“There could be a lot of validity to that rumor, because 50 is a good number to stop at,” Thompson previously said of the show ending. “That’s an incredible package. He [Lorne Michaels] will be, probably, close to 80 years old at that point, and, you know, he’s the one who’s had his touch on the whole thing.”
Thompson inferred the network may “slash the budget” if Michaels retires which would diminish the quality of the show, claiming that if that were the case it would be “unfair to watch it just really go down kind of in flames” because of monetary limitations. He added that “capping it at 50 might not be a bad idea.”
Last month, former “SNL” cast member Rob Schneider, who was on the show from 1990 to 1994, revealed he thinks it is time for the show to come to an end, detailing a 2016 sketch in which Kate McKinnon acted as Hillary Clinton, as the moment he thought the show reached its end.
“I hate to crap on my old show,” he said on The Glenn Beck Podcast. “I literally prayed, ‘Please have a joke at the end. Don’t do this. Please don’t go down there.’ And there was no joke at the end, and I went, ‘It’s over. It’s over. It’s not going to come back.’”