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Saturday Night Live

Saturday Night Live (SNL) is the name of NBC's weekly late night one-and-a-half hour live comedy show, which has been on the air since 1975.

Each week, the show features a different celebrity guest host, and features a guest musical act (sometimes the guest host is the musical guest). The show consists of comedy sketches, a comedic news segment, spoofs of television commercials, and performances by the guest musical artist. Many of the sketches feature recurring characters or running gags, as well as impressions[?] of various celebrities.

When the show began, it was originally called "Saturday Night", because ABC featured a program at the same time titled "Saturday Night Live with Howard Cosell". When the ABC program went off the air, the NBC program changed its name to "Saturday Night Live". The original cast (1975 - 1980) were known as the Not Ready for Prime-Time Players and included Second City[?] alum Dan Aykroyd, as well as Chevy Chase, John Belushi, Gilda Radner, Jane Curtin, Laraine Newman, and Garrett Morris. Bill Murray replaced Chase in 1977, after Chase left to pursue a movie career (this would become commonplace at SNL). Paul Shaffer, who also appeared in many sketches, was the musical director for the show from 1975 to 1980. Other regulars on the show included writer Al Franken, who later became famous as a political author and satirist, and Harry Shearer, who later acted in several films and television series, including The Simpsons. The show also featured frequent guest appearances by comedians Steve Martin and Andy Kaufman.

The entire original cast, as well as producer Lorne Michaels, quit the show at the end of the fifth season because NBC refused to give them a requested hiatus. Jean Doumanian[?] took over the production of the show and hired a completely new cast for the 1980 season. The new show was plagued by problems from the start, and was deemed disastrously unfunny by both critics and the viewing audience. Symbolic of the problems faced by the show, cast member Charles Rocket[?] uttered the f-word (he actually said "frig", but it could have been interpreted as the f-word) during one sketch in early 1981; NBC, which had had enough, fired Doumanian, who was then replaced by Dick Ebersol[?]. Ebersol built a new cast around Eddie Murphy and Joe Piscopo[?], the only cast members he retained from the Doumanian era. Michaels later returned to the show.

Table of contents

Complete cast list

Notable "featured players" have included Peter Aykroyd[?], Don Novello, Al Franken, Brian Doyle-Murray, A. Whitney Brown[?], Damon Wayans[?], Ben Stiller, Robert Smigel[?], Sarah Silverman[?], Jay Mohr[?], Conan O'Brien and Laura Kightlinger[?].

The program is executive produced by Lorne Michaels, also associated with the Kids in the Hall.

People who have hosted five or more times

People who have appeared as both host and musical guest

Recurring gags & characters included

Popular catch phrases originating from the show

  • "I'm Chevy Chase, and you're not"
  • "Jane, you ignorant slut" (Dan Aykroyd)
  • "We are, two wild and crazy guys"
  • "Well, excuse me!"
  • "Well, isn't that special?"
  • "Yeah, that's the ticket"
  • "You look mah'velous"
  • "I'm good enough, I'm smart enough and gosh darn it, people like me." (Stuart Smalley[?])
  • "We're here to pump you up" (Hans and Franz[?])
  • "Excellent" (Wayne's World)
  • "...Not!" (Wayne's World)
  • "My father always used to say, it's always something. If it's not one thing, it's another."
  • "We're not worthy!" (Wayne's World)
  • "I'm Fifty. Fifty years old!"

Movies which have spun off from the series (or included characters that previously appeared on the series)

External links



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