Comedian Michael Che will replace Cecily Strong as the anchor of “Weekend Update” in the upcoming season of “Saturday Night Live.” The NBC show will begin Season 40 on Sept.27.
Che, who is best known for his role as a correspondent on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show,” will join co-anchor Colin Jost, who joined SNL's news desk in the middle of last season. Lorne Michaels, creator and executive producer of SNL, said, according to The New York Times, that he had selected the 31-year-old stand-up comedian after trying out “a number of different combinations” in the last few weeks.
“Michael is a strong writer, and he’s really funny,” Michaels reportedly said. “It’s always difficult to make changes and make ‘Update’ different from what’s gone before.”
Che, who has been a part of the SNL team as a writer, has also appeared as a stand-up comedian on "Late Night" and CBS' "The Late Show with David Letterman."
i wanna thank Jon & the entire @TheDailyShow staff for letting me do this. i had a FANTASTIC time there. 1st class all the way
— Michael Che (@CheThinks) September 12, 2014
According to reports, Strong will now appear more frequently as a cast member on SNL. Michaels reportedly said that Strong, who became part of the “Weekend Update” last season, was first paired with Seth Meyers and then with Jost. Jost replaced Meyers after the latter left the show in February to host NBC’s “Late Night” show.
“It struggled to find an identity last season,” Michaels said, according to The Times. “Because what had come before had been pretty brilliant.”
“This is about a new era, what feels appropriate for now,” he went on adding.
SNL Season 40 will return with Chris Pratt as the host and Ariana Grande as the musical guest for its first episode. But, according to reports, several other cast members including Brooks Wheelan, Noel Wells, John Milhiser and Nasim Pedrad will not return for the new season.