It’s starting to look like Saturday Night Live is about to get hit with an even more major exodus of talent this year than previously reported, as Deadline reports that—in addition to news that broke earlier today that Pete Davidson was exiting the sketch series—the show is also about to lose the talents of Aidy Bryant, Kate McKinnon, and Kyle Mooney when it airs its 47th-season finale tomorrow night.
None of these departures are exactly a shock, in so far as, if you lump in Davidson, the four performers represent a ridiculous 37 seasons of time on the NBC series. (Bryant and McKinnon both joined the show in 2012, Mooney in 2013, and Davidson in 2014.) All four have also pursued projects outside the SNL nest, with Bryant starring in Shrill, Mooney launching Netflix’s Saturday Morning All Star Hits!, and McKinnon and Davidson both pursuing extensive film opportunities.
Among current cast members, only Cecily Strong ties Bryant and McKinnon at 10 seasons in the series’ roster. (Kenan, of course, stands alone: Please take this as your regular reminder that, at 19 seasons on SNL, and 6 on All That on Nickelodeon, Kenan Thompson has now spent fully 56 percent of his entire life, birth onward, on the casts of televised sketch comedy shows. Man’s a machine.)
SNL honcho Lorne Michaels had previously hinted that this might be a “year of change” for the series, which has favored increasingly long cast tenures in recent years. (Before 2000, the only performers to last a decade or longer on the show were Tim Meadows and Darrell Hammond.) Those longer runs have been facilitated by an increasing tolerance for cast members missing shows to work on other projects; Bryant, McKinnon, and Davidson have all skipped portions of recent seasons while pursuing outside opportunities.
Deadline notes that the series might do some kind of goodbye for the quartet of departing stars during tomorrow night’s finale, which is being hosted by Natasha Lyonne, with musical guest Japanese Breakfast.