Jim Belushi Shares Candid Thoughts About Why He Was Fired From Saturday Night Live

Jim Belushi as Jim Orenthal in According to Jim.

Saturday Night Live has been around for a long time and the cast is ever-changing, even now with rumors that some changes may be made ahead of the upcoming season. While a lot of cast members who have left the series over the years did it on their own terms, some were fired. One of those people is actor and comedian Jim Belushi, who is now getting candid about why he thinks he was fired.

Before Jim Belushi starred in the sitcom According to Jim, he was a cast member and writer on Saturday Night Live for 33 episodes between 1983 and 1985. He followed in his brother John’s footsteps, as John Belushi was one of the original cast members of SNL. In a recent interview with Vulture, Belushi reflected on his time on the long-running series. While his brother was an original cast member, Belushi was the first cast member to be fired and then rehired, and the comedian opens up about why that was:

Very simple: I was out of control. It was the best thing to ever happen to me. I was out of my mind. I was throwing a fire extinguisher at [executive producer] Dick Ebersol, a hissy fit. SNL is the hardest thing I ever did, and that’s including divorce. I survived it, barely. I went back to him with my tail between my legs. I drop the ego, I got humble. I stopped drinking the rest of that season.

Jim Belushi didn’t join SNL until a year after his brother’s death. Knowing how Belushi acted at first then knowing how he turned it around shows that anyone can do it. While he did get fired, he put in the work to get rehired. Being the younger brother of John Belushi on SNL could not have been easy for him, and I can only imagine how different SNL would be had he not come back.

Jim Belushi got up to some chaotic behavior on Saturday Night Live before he was fired, and he's not the only member of the Belushi family thanks to some of what John Belushi got up to before passing away in 1982. Dan Aykroyd, who played opposite John Belushi in 1980's The Blues Brothers, shared a fun little story about his costar disappearing from set one day and he went on a hunt to find him. For his part, Jim Belushi has a perspective on his SNL firing that he might not have decades ago, and he reflects on that earlier time in both gratitude and nostalgia.

You can check out Jim Belushi's time on Saturday Night Live streaming on Peacock. The streaming service is the home of all 46 seasons of SNL streaming, among plenty of other options.

Megan Behnke
Freelance TV News Writer

Passionate writer. Obsessed with anything and everything entertainment, specifically movies and television. Can get easily attached to fictional characters.