'Saturday Night Live' Will Test Audience Members for COVID-19

“We don’t know that we’re going to be able to pull it off,” Lorne Michaels tells the New York Times

Will Heath/NBC

“Saturday Night Live” is returning to Studio 8H to film new episodes starting next month and everyone involved will be tested for COVID-19 upon entering the building, including the audience, executive producer Lorne Michaels says.

In an interview with the New York Times to discuss the upcoming season, Michaels said the details regarding how the show will incorporate a “limited” studio audience are “still being sorted out,” but it will involve rapid coronavirus testing.

“Things have changed,” Michaels said. “There’s heat sensors at the revolving doors and then you go for your rapid [Covid] test. You wait 15 minutes and then you’re in the building.”

Michaels said in an earlier interview with Vulture that the show was cooperating with the office of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on how to proceed with a limited in-studio audience for the run of shows coming up next month. “We need the audience, obviously,” he said at the time. “With comedy, when you don’t hear the response, it’s just different. With the kind of comedy we do, which quite often is broad, timing gets thrown off without an audience. And for me, what is most important is when you’re absolutely certain of some piece on Wednesday, and then the dress-rehearsal audience sees it on Saturday and tells you you’re wrong.”

NBC announced this month that “SNL” will return with five back-to-back new episodes starting Oct. 3.

Lauren Holt, Punkie Johnson and Andrew Dismukes have joined the cast as featured players for the upcoming season, which will also see Jim Carrey return to play Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and Maya Rudolph reprise her role his running mate Kamala Harris.

Chris Rock will host the season premiere, joined by musical guest Megan Thee Stallion.

“We don’t know that we’re going to be able to pull it off,” Michaels told the Times. “We’re going to be as surprised as everyone else when it actually goes on. We just have to stay clean and focused until Oct. 3. And then we do five shows in a row.”

15 Craziest 'SNL' Cut for Time Sketches – From Andy Samberg's 'Testicules Cologne' to Ariana Grande as Judy Garland (Videos)

  • “Testicules Cologne”(May 2014) •In this glamorous commercial for Testicules, a “cologne for down there,” women, men and even a dog fawn over a man (Andy Samberg) who exudes confidence.
  • “Coal Miners”(October 2014)•Levar (Bill Hader), the gossipy coal miner, spread rumors amongst and about his fellow coal miners.
  • “Grandpa”(January 2015)•Grandpa (J.K. Simmons) makes quite an impression on his granddaughter’s fiancé when he can’t stop discussing grandma’s booty.
  • “Dance of the Daisies”(March 2015)•Four friends (including Dwayne Johnson) immediately regret dressing up as flowerpots and putting on a show.
  • “The Sparkelles”(April 2015)•Girl group The Sparkelles (Taraji P. Henson, Cecily Strong, Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones) have a little trouble coming up with original songs when they perform on “The Shebang Hour.”
  • “Inner White Girl”(May 2015)•When Leslie Jones has a hard time dealing with white people, she consults her Inner White Girl (Reese Witherspoon).
  • “Donald Trump’s Hair”(November 2015)•Scalp Team 6 scientists are shrunk and dispatched to protect Donald Trump’s hair when the wind picks up.
  • “Christmas at Nana’s”(December 2015)•Amy Poehler and Kyle Mooney are siblings who are forced to resolve their differences before they can spend time with Grandma.
  • “Supermarket Spree”(February 2016)•A contestant (Melissa McCarthy) will stop at nothing to take out her competition on Supermarket Spree.
  • “Cinema Channel”(March 2016)•Star Judy Garland (Ariana Grande) has total creative control for her 1961 sci-fi film, “Up We Go in Our Fantastic Rocket.”
  • “New Bachelorette”(May 2017)•Chris Pine’s multiple attempts to woo the first black “Bachelorette,” Rachel (Sasheer Zamata), goes spectacularly wrong.
  • “My Little Stepchildren”(February 2018)•If you have a fear of dolls, well you should probably look away now. The toy is specifically targeted at children with a “flair for the dramatic,” like Natalie Portman’s kid in the ad.
  • “Heinz”(November 2019)•A commercial advertises Heinz Relax ketchup in a newly designed bottle that sounds like it enjoys Will Ferrell squeezing it more than it should.
  • Aidy Bizzo& Lizzo (December 2019)•Undeniably confident Lizzo teaches Aidy Bryant how to work her “earth-shatteringly gorgeous a–.”
  • “Love Is Blind: Quarantine Edition”(March 2020)•Contestants on Netflix’s reality dating show “Love Is Blond” (including John Mulaney) choose to marry someone they have never met while under quarantine for the coronavirus. It doesn’t end well.

Going through “Saturday Night Live” withdrawal? We’ve got the cure

Source: Read Full Article