Category: Saturday Night Live

Melissa McCarthy dances her way onto 'Saturday Night Live'

Melissa McCarthy returned over the weekend to her sketch-comedy roots (did you know she was a Groundlings cast member?) as host of "Saturday Night Live." The newly minted Emmy winner and star of "Mike and Molly" told the crowd she was "beyond thrilled."

Dance fever, ranch dressing taste tests and a bit of office romance (or should we say sexual harassment) followed, with McCarthy proving at every turn that she still has the instincts for stage comedy.

It was clear from her monologue where things were headed, when she looked into the camera and told her kids Viv and Georgie, "Go to bed now, cause Mama’s about to get pretty inappropriate." And she did.

Before long she was shaking her booty alongside "Bridesmaids" costar and "SNL" cast member Kristin Wiig.

And she definitely wasn’t holding back when it came to a little skit about Hidden Valley Ranch. As taste tester Linda, donning a Spock sweatshirt and bad perm, things get, well, a little messy.


Alec Baldwin to set record as most-hosted host on 'SNL'

Emmys: Did 'Bridesmaids' help Melissa McCarthy pull off an upset?

'Mike & Molly' star Melissa McCarthy designing her own Emmy dress

-- Emily Christianson

Photo: Melissa McCarthy. Credit: Chris Pizzello / Associated Press

'Boardwalk Empire' scores big at Creative Arts Emmys

Boardwalk Empire wins big at Creative Arts Emmys

Someone get Nucky Johnson a stiff drink: HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire” reigned supreme at this year’s Creative Arts Emmys.

The period drama -- set in 1920 Atlantic City as the dawn of Prohibition begins to shift the landscape for mobsters, politicians and the like -- received seven awards, including casting for a drama and cinematography for a drama, during Saturday’s ceremony, which was held at the Nokia Theatre in downtown Los Angeles.

"Boardwalk's" big night helped its home base, HBO, in nabbing a total of 15 trophies, including three for "Mildred Pierce."

Held before next week’s Primetime Emmy Awards, the majority of statuettes are presented during the Creative Arts ceremony -- with technical categories the primary focus, and guest actors and reality recognitions also awarded.

PHOTOS: Creative Arts Emmys red carpet

Reality series "Deadliest Catch," which airs on Discovery Channel, held its own, taking home four trophies, including noncompetition reality program. And veteran "Survivor" host Jeff Probst earned his fourth win as reality host.

Stars with multi-talents also proved to be advantageous: Gwyneth Paltrow was awarded guest actress for her three-episode arc on Fox’s comedy "Glee" and singer-turned-actor Justin Timberlake scored a double Emmy win for guest actor in a comedy series and one for original music and lyrics or his "Justin Timberlake monologue" -- both related to his hosting duties on "Saturday Night Live." The late-night sketch show has been fruitful for the "Social Network" star, who took home outstanding original music lyrics for "D**k in a Box" in 2007.

Other winners included "Glee" for comedy casting and "The Walking Dead" for prosthetic makeup. In addition, "Futurama" was crowned top animated series while the "64th Annual Tony Awards" won in the special class category.

Second to HBO, PBS scored 10 wins, including costumes for a miniseries, movie or special ("Downton Abbey") and writing for nonfiction programming ("Freedom Writers").

The Creative Arts Emmys will air Sept. 17 on Reelz.  

Emmys in the remaining 25 categories will be presented during the 2011 Primetime Emmy Awards telecast Sept. 18 on Fox. 


September 11, Remembered on TV

NBC News Twitter feed hacked with fake terrorism post

KCBS anchor Laura Diaz leaves station, KCAL's Rick Garcia promoted

--Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: Steve Buscemi as Enoch "Nucky" Thompson in HBO's "Boardwalk Empire." Credit: HBO

Alec Baldwin to set record as most-hosted host on 'SNL'


Alec Baldwin is set to host "Saturday Night Live" for the 16th time, and when he does he will set a new record for the most times a single host has hosted "SNL." The "30 Rock" star is currently tied with his one-time Oscars co-host, Steve Martin. Baldwin will kick off the the 37th season premiere of "Saturday Night Live" on Sept. 24.

Behind Baldwin and Martin in the most-hosted hall of fame are John Goodman (with 12 host appearances), Buck Henry (with 10 host appearances) and Tom Hanks (also with 10 host appearances).

To commemorate his record-breaking 16th hosting job, here's some behind-the-scenes video of a young and handsome Baldwin shooting the promos for his very first "SNL" appearance with the B-52s way back in April 1990.


Alec Baldwin honored for TV work with star on Hollywood Boulevard

Alec Baldwin, mayor of New York? 'I wouldn't rule it out,' rep says

Justin Timberlake and Lady Gaga drive 'Saturday Night Live' to big ratings

-- Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: Alec Baldwin, left, and Steve Martin during a 2006 appearance on "Saturday Night Live."

Fox News mistakenly uses Tina Fey picture in Sarah Palin story

This post has been corrected. Please see the note at the bottom for details.

Fox News found out the hard way that there's nothing like the real thing when it comes to Sarah Palin, especially when it comes to Palin impersonator Tina Fey.

A story on  "America's News Headquarters" about Palin's current bus tour, in which she may be testing the waters for a 2012 presidential bid, was illustrated with a graphic of Fey portraying Palin, according to The snafu was particularly glaring since Palin works for Fox as a correspondent.

While viewers may have chuckled at the mistake, Fox News did not find the issue a laughing matter. The website reported that Fox News executive producer of weekend programming David Clark said the producer responsible for the mistake will be "disciplined," and an apology and explanation will be provided during the show next week. 

[For the record, 3:52 p.m, June 6 A previous version of this post said an internal Fox News memo to the staff about the Palin error indicated that there would be "zero tolerance" for on-screen errors. That memo was actually issued two years ago and was unrelated to the Palin incident.]


Bristol Palin scores new reality show

Fox News confirms Sarah Palin is joining as a contributor

About (Late) Last Night: Bill O'Reilly and Jon Stewart debate [Video]

-- Greg Braxton

'SNL' star Jason Sudeikis gears up for MTV Movie Awards, joins Team Bella in the process [Video]

Jason-sudeikis-051011_01_032 Jason Sudeikis is keeping busy these days. The "SNL"-er stars in July’s revenge comedy “Horrible Bosses.” And he’s gearing up to host this weekend’s MTV Movie Awards — in case you weren’t tipped off by his appearance on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" and the promo spots airing incessantly on MTV. (Kristen Stewart, don't worry, the bowl haircut is so in.)

Sudeikis got in some last-minute press time this week at Universal City Walk to discuss the big show, which will be at Gibson Amphitheatre. (By the way, MTV academy, he thinks “King’s Speech” star Colin Firth got snubbed: “But, you know, Jaden Smith knows karate. You can’t compete with that.”

Here’s more from Sudeikis:

Continue reading »

Justin Timberlake and Lady Gaga drive 'Saturday Night Live' to big ratings

"Saturday Night Live" rode some hot three-way action to big ratings.

NBC's comedy revue probably would have scored healthy numbers with either Justin Timberlake (a hosting favorite) or Lady Gaga. But putting both together translated into the highest season finale ratings in seven years.

The Timberlake-hosted "SNL" this past weekend averaged a 7.0 rating in the nation's top 56 TV markets, a 21% improvement over last season's season-ender and the best number since the 2004 closer with the Olsen twins (the Olsen twins? Really?). Complete ratings, including total-viewer numbers, are due later this week.

Of course it helped that Lady Gaga came along to promote her new album, "Born This Way," which was released early Monday and is already No. 1 on iTunes.

In case you missed it, here was one of the highlights, the video parody "3-Way" with Timberlake and cast member Andy Samberg -- the duo behind a couple earlier naughty clips -- with a special appearance from Gaga.


Trackers, what did you think of "3-Way" and Timberlake as host?


Showtime renews "Nurse Jackie," cancels "United States of Tara"

-- Scott Collins (




Andy Samberg of 'Saturday Night Live' named Discovery Channel's Shark Week host

Andysamberg Discovery Channel has just picked its first-ever Chief Shark Officer, and the honor goes to ... Andy Samberg.

Samberg, a longtime player on NBC's "Saturday Night Live," will host the 24th annual Shark Week celebration -- Discovery's marine-themed summer programming celebration -- which will include filming on-air "wraps," a special and possibly even a "dive with the apex predators."

Shark Week has become a Discovery signature and was watched by a record total of nearly 31 million viewers last year, according to the channel.

"I'm overjoyed about being appointed CSO," Samberg said in a statement. "Everyone loves Shark Week. It's the Bill Cosby of week-long television blocks dedicated to sea animals."

This is not Samberg's first on-screen brush with dangerous animals, however. "SNL" fans already know him as one of the geniuses behind the long-running video skit "Laser Cats."


Shark Week: Tiger Sharks

Laughing at the presidents on "SNL"

New NBC chief caught in fracas over "SNL" transgender spoof

-- Scott Collins

Photo: Andy Samberg. Credit: Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images


Laughing at the presidents with 'Saturday Night Live' [Video]

Governing may be serious business, but Presidents Day is a perfect time to look at some of the funny presidential takeoffs from "Saturday Night Live," which has taken humorous pokes at every standing commander in chief since the show began.

Chevy Chase's clumsy and clueless Gerald Ford had a unique way of trimming the tree and celebrating Christmas:

Darrell Hammond was the "SNL" performer most associated with his spot-on impression of President Clinton. But Phil Hartman also had a hilarious take on the fast food-munching Clinton:

Dana Carvey brought prissiness and precision to his portrayal of George H.W. Bush and his "thousand points of light":

Will Ferrell always exuded a bumbling confidence as George W. Bush, perfecting the imitation so well it eventually wound up on Broadway: 

President Obama has not been a huge fan of Fred Armisen's impression. Armisen is white and uses heavy makeup when he portrays the African American president:

[For the record, 9:33 a.m.: An earlier version of this post misspelled Will Ferrell's last name as Farrell.]

-- Greg Braxton


New NBC chief caught in fracas over transgender spoof on 'Saturday Night Live'

NBC entertainment chief Bob Greenblatt has been on the job only a few days, but he's already trying to quash an uproar over a "Saturday Night Live" sketch this past weekend.

The advocacy group GLAAD is angry about a filmed commercial spoof for a "Estro-Maxx," a drug for men who are transitioning to transgender women. "You deserve to be in the body you want," cast member Bill Hader says in the bit. "But most hormone-replacement therapies require you to take five estrogen supplements a day. Five — who has time for that?"


One could argue that the fake ad is really a parody of drug-ad tropes, not transgendered people. But in any case, GLAAD found the segment offensive.

"There were no 'jokes' per se; all the laughs came from the commercial's offensive and dehumanizing portrayals of transgender women," the group said in a news release. "By telling its audience that transgender women should be laughed at and ridiculed, NBC contributed to an environment that sees transgender people subjected to near-universal discrimination in the workplace and an environment in which at least one transgender person is murdered every month."

GLAAD called on viewers to complain to the network and also asked NBC to remove the video from Hulu, and other sites.

A NBC spokeswoman declined to comment. But it's understood that Greenblatt and NBC diversity chief Paula Madison will meet with GLAAD officials to discuss the case.

"SNL" has frequently run afoul of critics who say the show crosses the line. A recurring bit in which Fred Armisen plays former New York Gov. David Paterson, who is legally blind, aroused the ire of advocates for the vision-impaired. Paterson later appeared on the show and confronted Armisen directly when he was in character.

One irony for Greenblatt: In his previous role supervising Showtime's programming, he was frequently praised for his handling of shows friendly to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, including "The L Word" and "Weeds."

What did you think of the "SNL" spoof? 

— Scott Collins (Twitter: @scottcollinsLAT)



Thanks, Sarah Palin! Tina Fey gets the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor

Does Tina Fey look just a bit like Sarah Palin? You betcha. Are both women sassy brunettes who love droppin’ their vowels just for laughs? Oh, fer sure. But on Tuesday night, before a large crowd at the Kennedy Center in Washington, “Saturday Night Live” cast member Seth Meyers pointed out one major difference between Fey and the former vice presidential candidate she has spoofed many times on TV: “We’re all here tonight because Tina won something.”

That “something” was the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, an honor that’s been bestowed Tina-Fey-gallery upon such comedy greats as Richard Pryor, Billy Crystal and Bill Cosby. And Fey, who attended the ceremony with her husband and parents, paid tribute to the former Alaska governor in her acceptance speech. "I would be a liar and an idiot if I didn't thank Sarah Palin for helping get me here tonight," said the Emmy-winning star of “30 Rock” and “SNL.” "My partial resemblance and her crazy voice are the two luckiest things that have ever happened to me."

Hosted by a dozen of Fey’s famous friends, the luxurious made-for-TV ceremony, which will air on PBS stations nationwide on Sunday, doubles as a benefit for the Kennedy Center, and chairman David Rubenstein kicked off the night by announcing that Fey’s event had raised $1.3 million, the largest total in the prize’s history. So of course, Fred Armisen couldn’t resist joking about the big bucks she makes as a noted funnyperson. He estimated that she’d raked in $60 million for her movie “Baby Mama” alone. “Mark Twain didn’t do that for Paramount,” he scoffed.

Continue reading »

Katy Perry finds her way back to 'Sesame Street' by way of 'Saturday Night Live'

Katy Perry's play date with Elmo was cut short this week, but the singer found her way back to "Sesame Street" with this hilarious "Saturday Night Live" spoof.

Perry was the musical guest on the NBC show's 36th season premiere Saturday. Her performances of "California Gurls" and "Teenage Dream" were memorable. But everyone's surely going to be talking about her skit with Amy Poehler and Maya Rudolph, who returned to "SNL" for the season opener.

You can see it here for yourself:

-- Maria Elena Fernandez

Video: YouTube


Katy Perry: Way too "adult" for "Sesame Street?"

Three Emmys earn Bryan Cranston a 'Saturday Night Live' guest host spot

Bryansnl The third time really WAS the charm for Emmy-winner Bryan Cranston.

The actor who just scored his third-consecutive Emmy for lead actor in a drama for "Breaking Bad" announced on ESPN Radio's Mason & Ireland show that he would be a guest host on "Saturday Night Live" Oct. 2. It will be the first appearance on the sketch comedy series for the actor, who starred as the buffoonish father in "Malcolm In The Middle" before his stint on the hit AMC drama, where he plays a chemistry teacher who gradually becomes a drug dealer.

"I'm so thrilled and excited," Cranston said.

Vince Gilligan, the creator of "Breaking Bad," said in an interview earlier this year that he was mystified that Cranston, whom he called a "courageous actor," had never been asked to host "SNL": If Bryan "hosted 'Saturday Night Live,' he would hit it out of the park."

Cranston said in a corresponding interview that he was philosophical about not being asked to host "Saturday Night Live": "Would I like to host 'Saturday Night Live?' Hell, yes, I'd love to. But it's not going to have a big impact on my life if it doesn't happen."

--Greg Braxton


Photo: Bryan Cranston                               Credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez/ Getty Images


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