We know Saturday Night Live has one hell of a season planned this year. The show is turning 40, and has already enticed a couple of brand new hosts and put together a special related to the anniversary that is set to air in February. Now, the latest reports have indicated that veteran SNL actor and comedian Bill Murray may return to host the late night sketch comedy series for the first time in 15 years.
Today, NBC officially announced that Chris Pratt and Sarah Silverman will be hosting the first two episodes of Saturday Night Live this season, with guest musicians Ariana Grande and Maroon 5 rounding out the lineup. Last night, Splitsider caught a few NBC local news affiliates noting Pratt and Silverman would appear as hosts in Season 40, along with Bill Murray. The posts were later taken down. Then, this morning NBC officially announced Pratt and Silverman were on board, making no mention of Murray.
This could mean one of three things. The first, and obviously the one I’m most stoked to see come true, is that Murray is scheduled to host an upcoming episode of SNL and NBC just hasn’t gotten around to announcing the actor, yet. The second is that Murray was initially signed on for SNL, but the scheduling didn’t work out (Murray's currently filming The Jungle Book), and they had to bump up Pratt. This is the more likely, as Splitsider noted Murray was initially supposed to host the first episode opposite Grande. The good news is that option number two doesn’t necessarily exclude option number one. The final possibility is that the NBC affiliates were just completely misinformed and made a mistake, later pulling the information. The only reason this seems odd is that Irish musician Hozier was also announced in the report opposite the confirmed Ariana Grande and Maroon 5.
Hopefully, Murray will still decide to host an episode during Season 40. The man joined Saturday Night Live in 1977, replacing Chevy Chase as a cast member, and he hasn’t hosted an episode of the long-running series since 1999, although he hosted 5 times prior to that date. He’s known for a slew of sketches, including his infamous “Apology Speech” or the ”Nerds” sketches. It would be nice to see him back for the show’s 40th Anniversary, even if it’s only for the special episode airing on February 15.
We’ll keep you updated as NBC releases more information on upcoming episodes of Saturday Night Live. In the meantime, you can catch the premiere on Saturday, September 27 at 11:35 p.m. ET. In the meantime, you can check out our full fall schedule, here.
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Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.