The hosts for Saturday Night Live season 48’s final episodes were announced before the ongoing Writers Guild Association strike shut down the sketch comedy show indefinitely. The writer’s strike began on May 2023 after the WGA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers were unable to agree on a new minimum bargaining agreement put forth by the WGA, which included an increase in writers’ salaries, viewership-based residual payments for shows on streaming services, and stronger regulations on AI scriptwriting. In light of the strike, SNL is one of many shows that had to halt production.
According to Deadline, Succession‘s Kieran Culkin and The White Lotus‘s Jennifer Coolidge were set to host season 48’s penultimate and final episodes, respectively. Culkin’s episode would have featured Labrinth as the musical guest and marked the actor’s second time hosting the live comedy show. Coolidge would have made her SNL debut alongside musical guest Foo Fighters. The news comes just after Pete Davidson’s highly anticipated return to SNL as the host was canceled due to the strike.
Why Culkin And Coolidge Should Kick Off SNL Season 49
Saturday Night Live loses the opportunity to produce two back-to-back classic episodes with the highly-regarded actors, but it gives more reasons to rebook them for future shows whenever the series returns to running on NBC. Culkin’s comical and complex portrayal of Roman Roy on HBO’s Succession makes him a natural fit for tackling memorable characters in various sketches. In fact, he already demonstrated his skills when he hosted SNL season 47, episode 5, which quickly became a fan-favorite episode.
Meanwhile, Coolidge has long been in high demand to host Saturday Night Live. Her show-stealing supporting roles throughout the 2000s leave little doubt that she would make an unforgettable host, and her recent starring role in HBO’s The White Lotus seasons 1 and 2 have cemented her legacy as a comedic genius. Coolidge herself has even been vocal about her desire to appear on the venerated sketch show, sharing that she “tried [her] a** off to be on [an episode] early in her acting career.”
While it is unclear when Saturday Night Live will return and whether Coolidge and Culkin will have a chance to host, the news of their cancelled episodes highlights how consequential the WGA strike is. With the industry’s shift to streaming and the impact of major technological advances on writers, large-scale changes are being discussed regarding studios’ treatment of writers to minimize ongoing disruptions throughout Hollywood. As writers and those in solidarity with them continue to chant on the picket line, the impacts are already noticeable in the television sphere.