Saturday Night Live is turning 40 this year. As such, it is going to be a landmark season for the series, with plenty of special hosts, guests and even an anniversary special planned for February. SNL has already announced Chris Pratt and Sarah Silverman will host the first two episodes of the season, and on Wednesday, NBC announced that Bill Hader will return to the sketch comedy series to host the October 11 episode.
Hader was an SNL staple cast member for the better part of the decade, performing such lively and memorable characters as Weekend Update correspondent Stefon, “Secret Word” host Lyle Round, reporter Herb Welch and chain-smoking Italian Vinny Vedicci. There’s a good chance we’ll see at least one, if not all, of these characters appear on the October 11 episode, although I’m a little less excited for the Weekend Update sketch now that the Seth Meyers/Stefon bromance is officially over.
Hader's career has picked up quite a bit since he left SNL in 2013, appearing in The Mindy Project and doing voicework for the likes of Bob’s Burgers and The Awesomes. He’s likely popping up on Saturday Night Live in October to promote his latest film, The Skeleton Twins, which he appears in with fellow SNL alum Kristen Wiig. The movie follows Hader and Wiig as a set of twins who cheat death on the same day. It’s a pretty weird premise, and the trailer proves it won’t be wholly comedic.
I’m pretty excited to see Hader return to SNL, but his appearance also means that the hopes for Bill Murray to return are probably dashed, at least for now. In a goof, a bunch of NBC local affiliates listed Murray as a host along with music guest Hozier before the official announcement came from NBC. NBC’s announcement today still proves that Hozier will be the musical guest, but Murray’s return was a either a huge flub or a possibility that was later canceled. Either way, it’s a bummer.
Obviously, Hader’s return is a big deal, as well, it’s just a little bit less exciting since he just left the show at the end of Season 38 and even returned to play Stefon once last season. Let’s see what he can bring to the table when he returns to the show as its host.
NBC’s Saturday Night Live will hit the schedule on September 27, kicking off with Chris Pratt and Ariana Grande. Silverman will pop up a week later, on October 4, with Maroon 5 as a musical guest. Hader and Hozier will appear in Episode 3 the week following.