Saturday Night Live will air a new episode this weekend after more than a month off-air due to the coronavirus pandemic. Production on the show was halted early last month, and an episode set to be hosted by The Office star John Krasinski never aired. The new episode will feature cast members, and will be filmed remotely to follow social distancing guidelines.
NBC did not say too much about the unique episode, but said the "original content" will be produced at home. There will be a "Weekend Update" segment with Colin Jost and Michael Che. Other cast members are expected to contribute content as well. The episode will also air at the regular time on Saturday, beginning at 11:30 p.m. ET/PT on NBC. It is not clear if any of the content will be live.
There has not been a new Saturday Night Live episode since March 7, when Daniel Craig hosted to promote the new James Bond movie, No Time To Die, which had already been delayed until November due to the pandemic. The Weeknd also performed "Blinding Lights" and "Scared to Live." Darrell Hammond, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rachel Dratch all made guest appearances.
Krasinski and singer Dua Lipa were set to perform the March 28 episode after a previously planned two-weekend break. However, NBC postponed the episode, as well as episodes planned for April 4 and April 11. Production on more than 30 other NBCUniversal shows were put on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, forcing many shows to end their seasons early.
This is not the first time SNL has tried to provide fans with some new content during the crisis. On Wednesday, the show released a 10-minute clip of comedian John Mulaney looking back on his time as a writer on the show. Mulaney also discussed returning to host the show, which he has now done three times. His most recent stint was on Feb. 29, when David Byrne performed.
The coronavirus pandemic has not been easy for the SNL team. Last weekend, Che revealed his grandmother died due to COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus. "I'm doing OK, considering. I'm obviously very hurt and angry that she had to go through all that pain alone," the comedian wrote on Instagram. "But I'm also happy she's not in pain anymore. And I also feel guilty for feeling happy. Basically, the whole gamut of complex feelings everybody else has losing someone very close and special. I'm not unique, but it's still scary."
On Tuesday, music producer Hal Willner died from complications of the coronavirus. He was the longtime sketch music producer for SNL. He also produced albums for Lou Reed, Marianne Faithfull, William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsburg. Willner also produced several tribute albums, including Amarcord Nino Rota and Leonard Cohen: I'm Your Man.