NBC announces major cast changes to ‘SNL’ ahead of season 48 premiere


Charlie Messinger, Contributor

Ever since its initial premiere in 1975, “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) has been a major source of ratings for NBC during the nearly five decades it has been on the air. As “SNL” gears up for season 48, set to premiere on Oct. 1, there have been several changes in the cast.

These cast changes include the departures of fan-favorite cast members and the additions of new comedians who have a résumé full of acting and comedy. Some of the recent cast changes have been anticipated for years, while others still have fans shocked and heartbroken. Along with that, the line-up of hosts and musical guests has been released for the first three episodes, which include A-list celebrities and award-winning singers.

Cast Departures

One of the most notable changes to the show is the number of cast departures ahead of the new season. Right before the season 47 finale aired on NBC in May 2022, Variety reported that four “SNL” cast members would not be returning, which included Pete Davidson, Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant and Kyle Mooney.

Davidson’s exit comes after his recent fame and numerous mentions in gossip magazines and tabloids, most recently in relation to his previous relationship with Kim Kardashian. He has also been working on several projects including a movie titled “Wizards!” which recently wrapped in August 2022 in Australia. He also starred in the Peacock romantic comedy “Meet Cute” with Kaley Cuoco which recently premiered on Sept. 21 on the streaming platform.

McKinnon and Bryant both joined the series in 2012, which was another time when multiple cast members happened to leave. Before the recent announcement, McKinnon had been rumored to exit the show for many years. She commented on her exit in July 2022 during an interview on “LIVE with Kelly and Ryan,” stating, “I thought about it for a very long time and it was very very hard.”

These cast departures are well-known among the public as the announcements were made prior to the season finale, with the episode acknowledging some of the cast exits. However, several more cast members were announced to be leaving over the summer. These cast members who subtly exited the series include Chris Redd, Melissa Villaseñor, Alex Moffat and Aristotle Athari, reported separately by Variety. Redd is set to star in a comedy special titled “Chris Redd: Why Am I Like This?” which will debut later this year on HBO Max.

New Cast Additions

With the eight cast members from season 47 of “SNL” not returning for the new season, NBC has added four new cast members to join the beloved show. In an announcement from NBC, the new cast members are Marcello Hernandez, Molly Kearney, Michael Longfellow and Devon Walker.

Hernandez has been doing stand-up comedy since he was 18 years old and has opened for headliners including famous comedian Jim Breuer according to his website. Kearney stars in numerous shows including “The Mighty Ducks” on Disney+ and “A League of Their Own” on Prime Video. Longfellow was chosen as one of TBS’ “Comics to Watch” in 2017 and has been featured on the comedy show “Bring the Funny” on NBC. Walker has been part of the writing team for popular TV shows including “Everything’s Trash” on Freeform and “Big Mouth” on Netflix.

Season 48 Hosts and Musical Guest Line-Up

The season 48 premiere of “SNL” is right around the corner and three of the upcoming hosts and musical guests have been revealed. According to an announcement from NBC, the premiere episode on Oct. 1 will feature “Top Gun: Maverick” actor Miles Teller as the host, alongside Grammy award-winner Kendrick Lamar as the musical guest.


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For the Oct. 8 episode, Emmy award-winner Brendan Gleeson will host with musical guest WILLOW. The Oct. 15 episode will feature Grammy award-winning singer Megan Thee Stallion in double duty as the host and musical guest.

Season 48 of “SNL” premieres on Oct. 1 at 11:30 p.m on NBC.