Lorne Michaels

Celebrate Leslie Jones’ “Saturday Night Live” Promotion with Her Career Highlights to Date

SNL writer, stand-up comedian, and all-around hero lady Leslie Jones was officially promoted to featured player last night, and those of us who’ve been paying attention to the sketch show’s 40th season know the news was a long time coming. Since joining the show as a writer at the beginning of 2014 — part of the same talent search that recruited cast member Sasheer Zamata and fellow writer LaKendra Tookes, who has since left the show — Jones has become one of the show’s most memorable faces, even without her name in the opening credits. Here’s some of Jones’s best material; watch it all, and get as excited as we are for this Saturday. … Read More

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James Franco’s ‘Saturday Night Live’ Documentary Isn’t James Franco-y Enough

James Franco constantly gets bored and switches careers, always moving on to gleefully experiment with (and sometimes destroy) a different job: painting, writing, teaching, and so on. This week, James Franco is a documentarian. Well, technically, James Franco was a documentarian in 2008 when he filmed a short for an NYU film class in which he went behind the scenes at Saturday Night Live. The project was later expanded into a feature-length film and is finally available for public viewing with its debut on Hulu Plus today. The end result is strange in that it’s not strange. Saturday Night isn’t very James Franco-like; instead, it’s a straightforward and simplistic documentary that tells us a lot of what we already knew.  … Read More

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What Jerry Seinfeld and Lorne Michaels Are Really Saying: White Men Are Just Funnier

The debate over women and people of color in comedy continues apace this week with two new entrants. In one corner, we have a new interview from Saturday Night Live‘s Lorne Michaels. Asked by Vulture when he realized SNL had a diversity problem, he said he’d noticed it “last summer,” which seems a little late in its just-about-40-year history. … Read More

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Is It Time for Lorne Michaels to Leave ‘SNL’?

A few weeks ago, Saturday Night Live directly responded to the widespread criticism that the show has a problem with diversity in a cold open featuring Kerry Washington who, as a black woman, was slated to play every single black female character on the episode. I thought it was a pretty good sketch, with its meta commentary, although it infuriated some people who felt that the joke was on them rather than SNL‘s whitewashed cast and crew. Apparently, that was enough of a statement for Lorne Michaels and his show, as the remaining four hosts for the year are all white guys, not to mention that the upcoming musical guests (other than this week’s, HAIM) are overwhelmingly white guys. Is this perhaps indicative of Michaels’ growing limitations as a producer? Is he only able to see the world through the lens of an older white guy? … Read More

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Get Your Hopes Up, Comedy Geeks: Fox Might Be Interested in John Mulaney’s Pilot

SNL writer John Mulaney’s comedy pilot, originally created for NBC before the network passed it over, is currently being retooled… Read More

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The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. The Daily News is reporting that Jason Sudeikis was upset that Lorne Michaels singled out Kristen Wiig for a big SNL send-off; meanwhile, it still hasn’t been confirmed that he’s leaving the show. [via Pop Culture Brain]

2. A new HBO series starring Catherine Keener that will be written and directed by… Read More

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