Fans of Saturday Night Live are having a big week as NBC announced the first slate of guest hosts on Monday. An exciting list of names was revealed, including a VERY exciting former cast member whose name rhymes with Shmeddie Shmurphy.
Fans also know that this time each year is when most casting decisions happen. Though no one has been added to this year’s upcoming 45th season, on Tuesday we did get our first departure from the series ahead of the September 28th premiere.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Leslie Jones won’t be returning for the upcoming season of the long-running sketch series. Jones reportedly wants to turn her attention towards movie roles and her Netflix comedy special, landing sometime next year.
Jones first joined the cast in 2014 after being hired as a writer and making memorable appearances on ‘Weekend Update.’ The comedian was polarizing with fans at first but over the years grew to become one of the cast’s strongest performers and a fan favorite. It’s unclear if Lorne Michaels and co. are seeking to fill Jones’ spot in the cast. Regardless, her energy and fearless on stage will certainly be missed.
Other than Jones, no one has announced their departure from the show and with only a month until the premiere, it’s likely that no one else will. If that holds true, season 45 will star Beck Bennett, Aidy Bryant, Michael Che, Pete Davidson, Mikey Day, Colin Jost, Kate McKinnon, Alex Moffat, Kyle Mooney, Cecily Strong, Kenan Thompson, and Melissa Villasenor. Heidi Gardner, Ego Nwodim, and Chris Redd are also expected to return as featured players.
Saturday Night Live season 45 kicks off September 28th on NBC with host Woody Harrelson and musical guest Billie Elish.