Saturday Night Live COVID Changes: No Audience, Limited Cast/Crew
UPDATE 5:49 pm ET: Tonight's musical guest Charli XCX has posted a message on her Instagram account announcing that while she is "currently safe and healthy," her performances have ben canceled due to the reduction in production crew for tonight's Paul Rudd-hosted Saturday Night Live. Here's a look at Charli XCX's Instagram post:
With an increase in the Omicron variant of COVID-19, NBC announced a big change to tonight's year-ending episode of NBC's Saturday Night Live. With Ghostbusters: Afterlife & The Shrink Next Door star Paul Rudd hosting and Charli XCX serving as the musical guest, tonight's episode will not have a live audience and will have a "limited cast and crew," with the news posted this afternoon via SNL's social media accounts.
"Due to the recent spike in the Omicron variant and out of an abundance of caution, there will be no live audience for tonight's taping of "Saturday Night Live" and the show will have limited cast and crew. The show continues to follow all government safety guidelines in addition to a rigorous testing protocol," was the message posted earlier. And for those who won tickets: "If you have won tickets to this show, you will be receiving more information soon. Thank you for your patience and understanding."
In the first mini-teaser, SNL cast member Ego Nwodim congratulates Rudd on joining the "SNL Five-Timers Club"- but it's not what Charli XCX thinks it is. Following that, Rudd offers a very good reason why they don't want to hear what his Christmas "wish" is. And finally, Nwodim makes sure Rudd and Charli XCX have the motivation they need for a great show. So is it too much to ask that they show her some love in return?
Here's a look at Rudd as well as several members of the SNL cast checking in from this week's table read:
And here's a look back at the official intro video that was released earlier this week:
Now here's a look back to when both Rudd and Charlie XCX previously took the stages of NBC's Studio 8H. In the first video, Rudd reflects back on his previous three SNL hosting gigs during a "Best Man" speech in his May 2019 opening monologue (which saw DJ Khaled as the musical guest). Following that, a look back at the promo for the December 13, 2014, episode that saw Charli XCX serving as musical guest with Martin Freeman (Sherlock) hosting and SNL cast member Kenan Thompson joining them for the clip :
Aidy Bryant, Michael Che, Pete Davidson, Mikey Day, Chloe Fineman, Heidi Gardner, Colin Jost, Kate McKinnon, Alex Moffat, Kyle Mooney, Ego Nwodim, Chris Redd, Cecily Strong, Kenan Thompson, Melissa Villaseñor, and Bowen Yang, along with returning feature players Andrew Dismukes & Punkie Johnson, and new feature players Aristotle Athari (Future Man, All Rise), James Austin Johnson (Silicon Valley) & Sarah Sherman (The Eric Andre Show) make up this season's cast.
With NBC's long-running sketch/variety series Saturday Night Live inching closer to the 50th season mark, it does so as the winner of the 2021 Emmy Award for Variety Sketch Series- its fifth straight win in that category (with the series very close to the triple-digits tally when it comes to the number of Emmys won).