Bryan Cranston to Host SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE; Jay Pharoah a “Done Deal” to Join the Cast

     September 2, 2010

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We just found out that the long-running sketch comedy series Saturday Night Live is adding three new cast members in the wake of veteran Will Forte’s departure from the cast. Now we have two more news updates regarding the 36th season of SNL. First up, fresh off his Emmy win last weekend, Show Tracker reports Bryan Cranston will host the October 2nd episode (which ironically enough is the second episode of the season). Though Cranston has worked his dramatic chops as of late, let’s not forget that Cranston was previously nominated for several Emmys for his comedic work as a supporting actor on Malcolm in the Middle. Head writer Seth Meyers expressed his excitement via Twitter: this will be an episode of SNL you won’t want to miss.

Hit the jump for news regarding yet another new cast member on SNL.

jay_pharoah_image_01For a little while now, Kenan Thompson has been the only African American SNL cast member, but it looks like that may not be true for much longer. The Comic’s Comic, a blog dedicated to everything related to stand-up/sketch comedy (and the site who actually appears to have broken the news of the previous new cast additions), says Jay Pharoah, a young stand-up comedian from Virginia’s Tidewater, may be joining the cast. Aside from the increase in racial diversity, even more exciting is the fact that Pharoah may bring a new take on President Barack Obama to the table. Though Fred Armisen has done a decent job with the impersonation, he can only do so much with a man who doesn’t really have many outstanding mannerisms or speech characteristics to embellish.

Apparently Pharoah’s casting is pretty much a done deal. (Let’s hope so after being flown to NYC twice for screen tests and meetings with Lorne Michaels.)  So this coming season will bring a whole slew of new talent. Below you can check out Pharoah’s comedic stylings, including quite an array of impressions — Eddie Murphy, Chris Tucker, Katt Williams and literally dozens more. If you’re more interested in his Obama impression, it show up shortly after the six minute mark.

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