‘SNL’ Promotes Writer Leslie Jones to Featured Cast Member
'SNL''s additions and subtractions in its first three weeks of the 40th anniversary season have gotten some notable attention, but its first in-house promotion of the season has us a bit more excited. Following her high-profile addition to the writing staff last season, and some standout appearances along the way, Leslie Jones has been promoted to a featured player of the NBC sketch comedy series.
Deadline brings word of Jones' elevation to the cast, adding that Jones will make her debut as a featured player this Saturday under Jim Carrey's return hosting gig. Jones had originally emerged as one of the 12 finalists for 'SNL''s much-publicized addition of a black female cast member, and though the featured spot went to Sasheer Zamata, 'SNL' creator Lorne Michaels brought Jones in as a writer shortly thereafter.
In addition to her duties among the writing staff, Jones had also garnered significant attention for her appearances on Weekend Update, beginning last May with a rant on slavery, and again on relationships in the recent premiere opposite fellow writer elevation Michael Che. Jones also joins Pete Davidson among the new featured players for the season, though the young Davidson had not previously held any position with the show.
It remains to be seen how 'SNL' will ultimately incorporate Leslie Jones among the featured cast (she also made an impression in Hader's "39 Cents" sketch), but in the meantime, what say you? Are you happy to see the noise-making 'SNL' writer given her due in front of the camera at last? Watch her latest appearance below, and tune in this weekend for Jim Carrey's 'SNL' return with Iggy Azalea!