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Those are two good choices for hosts, and the show continues to make good choices in that regard. First came the news that Betty White will host the show in May, and now comes word that Tina Fey will come back and host too.
Fey will host the April 10 show. Will she do her Sarah Palin impersonation? Will she return to "Weekend Update" in some way? I think you can bet on both of those things happening.
The musical guest will be Justin Bieber, which means I'll finally find out why "Justin Bieber" has been a Trending Topic on Twitter every day for the past three months.
Casey Wilson and Michaela Watkins have been let go from the show. Watkins has actually released a statement saying that she had a great time on the show and doesn't have any regrets. No official word yet from Wilson.
I didn't mind Watkins at all, she was fine, but I can't say I'll be sad to see Wilson go. I really don't think she added too much to the show and was often over the top/irritating in her performances and impersonations. I think she's the type of cast member that can be replaced rather easily. I know that other SNL fans never grew to like her either. But at least she had a sense of humor about it.
Update: Watkins is actually shocked by the firing.
NBC will announce today that they are adding two new performers to the regular cast. One of them, Abby Elliot, is the daughter of ex-SNL cast member/Get A Life star/David Letterman regular Chris Elliot. The other is comedienne Michaela Watkins, from The Groundlings. I'm not sure if people still use the word "comedienne," but I like it.
Now we have to see if the show's ratings surge continues. The election is now over and the big draws (Tina Fey as Sarah Palin and the debate sketches) will stop.
Annie recently posted her top 10 Kristen Wiig Saturday Night Live moments, and I happen to agree that Wiig seems to be one of the SNL MVPs now. Remember just a short time ago when she was in the "featuring" category instead of one of the main players? She's earned it, that's for sure. Even when her impersonations aren't dead on (such as this past weekend's Elisabeth Hasselbeck), you know who she's doing, and she really throws herself into the character. I think her Hasselbeck will get better, and her other impersonations have been just dead-on and brilliant (Judy Garland, Suze Orman, Gloria Swanson, Jamie Lee Curtis).
But I was thinking that there are three other people that would be naturals for Wiig to impersonate.
The Alaskan Governor and VP candidate will appear on the October 25 episode, according to Cindy Adams at The New York Post. If that wasn't exciting enough, this is the same episode that Jon Hamm will host, so I bet we can look forward to a Mad Men parody. Wouldn't it be great if Palin could appear in that sketch? Maybe she could play Joan Holloway. The mind reels.
Of course, she'll probably appear in the cold open, I'm guessing alongside Tina Fey and her fake Palin, similar to the time that Hillary Clinton appeared alongside Amy Poehler and gave her tips on how to play her.
I wonder if Palin will change the opening to the show and say something like "LIVE FROM GODLESS NEW YORK, HOME OF THE MEDIA ELITE, IT'S SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE!"
There could be a subtle clue in this New York profile of 24 year-old humorist and SNL writer Simon Rich. After all the talk about his new book and the talk about how he desperately needs an ending to the novel he's writing, the interviewer asks him if Fey is indeed going to play Palin this weekend. The answer?
We told you recently about Saturday Night Live's first new episode after the writers strike. The show will return this Saturday with host Tina Fey and musical guest Carrie Underwood. Now comes word that Maya Rudolph won't be on the show this weekend.
Rudolph still doesn't have a contract with the show. She almost left before this season started, but decided to come back. It now looks like that was only a temporary thing until they could get a contract hammered out. Producer Lorne Michaels says "I'm going to keep calling her until she changes her number," so the show wants her back. For the time being, her slot will be filled with Upright Citizen's Brigade troupe member Casey Wilson.
In other SNL news, the show will announce later this week who exactly is going to play Barack Obama in sketches. It won't necessarily be someone who is in the current cast. Michaels is also looking outside the show for someone to play the Democratic Presidential candidate.
Contrary to many, many reports that have been circulating this past week (including one from TV Guide's Michael Ausiello a few days ago), Maya Rudolph has indeed left Saturday Night Live. The news is confirmed by NBC.
This is too bad. Rudolph really grew on me over the years, and I loved many characters she did, including Oprah, Whitney Houston, Donatella, and one half of those Bronx women who host a local cable show. Funny, I always thought that Amy Poehler would be next to leave, following Tina Fey to a career in movies and her own TV show. But Rudolph has been on the show for several seasons and good for her with going on to the next thing in her life.
SNL's season premiere is this Saturday, with guests Lebron James and Kanye West.
Update: Actually, she changed her mind and is now staying.
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