SNL’s Kenan Thompson Discusses Lorne Michaels’s Retirement

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Saturday Night Live‘s longest-running cast member, Kenan Thompson, has some predictions about the future of the live sketch show. In an interview on Charlamagne Tha God’s hell of a week podcast, Thompson talked about SNL‘s upcoming 50th anniversary and what it might mean for the show. Charlamagne asked Thompson about a rumor that the show would end on its 50th year, the same year Lorne Michaels turns 80. “There could be a lot of validity to that rumor because 50 is a good number to stop at,” Thompson explained. “So, if somebody tries to come into his shoes, you know, it’s a good opportunity for NBC to save money as well, you know what I’m saying? [NBC] might slash the budget, and then at that point, you can’t really do the same kind of show. So that’s unfair to watch it just really go down kind of in flames for real because of those restrictions … Capping it at 50 might not be a bad idea.”

In 2021, Michaels revealed to CBS that he is “committed to doing this show until its 50th anniversary,” which would take place in 2025. Rumors of Thompson’s own departure have been swirling around for a while; when talking about his continued stay on the show, he stated, “That’s the forever plan,” Thompson says. “To never have to leave that show.”

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