Is Saturday Night Live approaching its end? Longtime star Kenan Thompson isn't ruling anything out.
On Thursday night, Thompson appeared as a guest on the Season 2 premiere of Comedy Central's Hell of a Week with Charlamagne Tha God (formerly titled Tha God's Honest Truth). True to form, Charlamagne got right to it, asking about the alleged "rumor" that Lorne Michaels might end SNL after Season 50, which would air in 2024-25, because he doesn't want to continue the show after he turns 80.
"Is that the rumor?" Thompson asked, seemingly unaware of Michaels' previous remarks suggesting as much.
"That is the rumor," Charlamagne replied. "That's what the streets are saying."
"Alright, well I need to start planning," Thompson joked, before offering a more serious answer.
"There could be a lot of validity to that rumor because 50 is a good number to stop at," said the star. "That's an incredible package. He will be, probably, close to 80 years old at that point, and you know, he's the one that's had his touch on the whole things, so if somebody tries to come into his shoes..."
Thompson noted that ending SNL is "a good opportunity for NBC to save money, as well," and if Michaels were to leave, the network might be inclined to invest elsewhere.
"Maybe they might slash the budget, and then at that point, you can't really do the same kind of show," he said. "So that's unfair to watch it just really go down kind of in flames — like for real for real — because of those restrictions... so capping it a 50 might not be a bad idea, I don't know."
As of now, though, there is no word on when the long-running sketch comedy show will come to an end — and whether Michaels' potential exit will play a role in its demise.
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Deena ElGenaidi's writing has been featured in Nylon, MTV News, Insider, The AV Club, and more. You can follow her on Twitter @deenaelg.