Saturday Night Live – SNL

“Saturday Night Live” premiered on NBC in 1975 and became an immediate hit. The sketch show was created by Lorne Michaels, and it introduced the world to the comedic talent of original “SNL” cast members Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Chevy Chase, Jane Curtin, and Gilda Radner. The sketch show is known for parodying pop culture and politics, as well as introducing recurring characters and skits. The late-night program begins with a skit known as the “cold open,” which always ends with someone loudly saying, “Live from New York, it’s Saturday night!”

Following the opening credits, that week’s guest host steps onto the famed stage in NBC’s Studio 8H and delivers a monologue. He or she will then perform in a number of sketches alongside the show’s cast members, many of whom have gone on to become big movie stars. Additionally, each episode of “Saturday Night Live” has a musical guest, who typically plays two songs during the broadcast.

Notable cast members who joined the show in the ’80s included Bill Murray, Eddie Murphy, Billy Crystal, Martin Short and Dana Carvey. The early ’90s saw the addition of rising stars such as Adam Sandler, Chris Farley, Mike Myers, Chris Rock, David Spade and Rob Schneider. By the mid-’90s, the show saw a major overhaul as many cast members were either fired or left to pursue movie careers. New additions to the lineup during that time included Will Ferrell, Jimmy Fallon, Tracy Morgan and Maya Rudolph.

The early 2000s introduced such talent as Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Seth Meyers, Will Forte, Jason Sudeikis and Kenan Thompson, who holds the record for the longest-serving cast member at 15 seasons and counting. The mid- to late 2000s introduced Kristen Wiig, Andy Samberg, Bill Hader, Bobby Moynihan and more. And the present “SNL” cast includes Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones, Pete Davidson, Cecily Strong and Aidy Bryant.

The show’s longest-running recurring segment is “Weekend Update,” which features funny commentary on the week’s news events. Chevy Chase served as its original anchor, followed by such others as anchors and co-anchors as Dan Aykroyd, Jane Curtin, Dennis Miller, Kevin Nealon, Norm MacDonald, Colin Quinn, Jimmy Fallon, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Seth Meyers, to name a few. The current anchors are Colin Jost and Michael Che, who are also the show’s head writers.

Meanwhile, several of the guest hosts have been a prominent part of “Saturday Night Live” over the years. Alec Baldwin currently holds the record for the most times hosting, with a total of 17 times under his belt. He’s followed by Steve Martin, who’s hosted 15 times. Additional celebrities who’ve made many recurring appearances over the years include Tom Hanks, John Goodman and Christopher Walken.

Additionally, many of the sketch comedy program’s more popular skits have been adapted into films. “The Blues Brothers,” “Wayne’s World,” “Coneheads” and “A Night at the Roxbury,” are just a handful of the notable “SNL” movies. Now in its 43rd season, “Saturday Night Live” is one of the longest-running TV shows of all time.

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