Here’s What Kenan Thompson Revealed About Saturday Night Live Shutting Down

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Many, including Kenan Thompson, have been ideas and speculations about how long NBC will opt to continue airing Saturday Night Live as it enters its 48th season, particularly as its creator and showrunner Lorne Michaels, 77, continues to live past his retirement age.

On Charlamagne tha God’s “Hell of a Week” podcast, cast member Kenan Thompson suggested that when Saturday Night Live celebrates its 50th anniversary in the 2024–2025 season, it could be a good idea to end the show. The discussion was sparked by rumors that Michaels might decide to stop producing the show at this point.

Charlamagne asked Thompson “The rumor is the show is ending at its 50th season because Mr. Lorne Michaels doesn’t want to do it after age 80. Is that true?”

 “There could be a lot of validity to that rumor, because 50 is a good number to stop at,” Thompson said. “That’s an incredible package. He will be, probably, close to 80 years old at that point, and, you know, he’s the one who’s had his touch on the whole thing.”

“So, if somebody tries to come into his shoes, you know, it’s a good opportunity for NBC to save money as well, you know what I’m saying? [NBC] might slash the budget and then at that point, you can’t really do the same kind of show. So that’s unfair to watch it just really go down kind of in flames for real because of those restrictions … Capping it at 50 might not be a bad idea,” Kenan Thompson.

Michaels has mentioned that he might step down as showrunner in 2025, although he made no mention of NBC discontinuing the program completely. With the exception of a five-year stint in the middle of the 1980s, he has been the showrunner of SNL from its start.

“You know, I think I’m committed to doing this show until its 50th anniversary, which is in three years,” Michaels said in December 2021. 

“I’d like to see that through, and I have a feeling that’d be a really good time to leave. But … I won’t want the show ever to be bad. I care too deeply about it. It’s been my life’s work. So I’m going to do everything I can to see it carry on,” He concluded.

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