'SNL': How Kelly Ripa Helped Introduce Jason Sudeikis to the World

Saturday Night Live has been doing question-and-answer monologues for a very, very long time. So long in fact, that Jason Sudeikis' very first on-camera SNL appearance came during one. The future cast member appeared in Kelly Ripa's Q&A monologue as an "aspiring actor" in a 2003 episode. Sudeikis became a regular cast member in 2005 and makes his first appearance as host this weekend.

As is usual with the Q&A style monologues, Ripa decided to do what she does best, which is speak to the people. The "people" in this case include members of the show's writing staff at the time. Sudeikis shows up later in the monologue to ask Ripa if she can tell him what he's doing wrong as an aspiring actor because she has three jobs and he has none. (In 2003, Ripa was hosting Live with Regis and Kelly and starring on ABC's Hope & Faith, and had just finished her run on All My Children the year before.) "First, you have to work really hard," Ripa began.

Ripa never got to finish her answer though, since future Curb Your Enthusiasm star JB Smoove interrupted her. Throughout the monologue, Smoove was repeatedly fascinated by the way the number three kept popping up in her life. At the time she taped the episode, Ripa was 33 and she and Mark Consuelos share three children. Paula Pell also made an appearance in the monologue as Smoove's wife. Smoove and Pell were both writers on SNL in 2003.

Sudeikis, who was born in Fairfax, Virginia, started his comedy career in Kansas City, Missouri before moving to Chicago. While performing at The Second City Las Vegas in 2003, he was hired as a writer on SNL. He was finally promoted to a featured player in 2005 and became a repertory player the following year. He left the show in 2013 to focus on his movie career and other projects. Although he has made occasional appearances on the show since leaving, the Oct. 21, 2021 episode will be his first time as host, with Brandi Carlile as the musical guest.

Sudeikis' appearance on SNL is timed to the success of his Apple TV+ sports comedy series Ted Lasso. The show's first season won the Outstanding Comedy Series award at the Primetime Emmy Awards last month. Sudeikis, Brett Goldstein, and Hannah Waddingham also won Emmys for their performances. Ted Lasso's second season wrapped earlier this month and it was picked up for a third season.

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In an interview with Entertainment Tonight earlier this week, Sudeikis said he was excited to return to Studio 8H in Rockefeller Plaza. "I'm looking forward to even just the Tuesdays and Wednesdays, the writing and the read-through, you know?" Sudeikis said. "Because it feels like being shot out of a rocket ship and people are like, 'It's already done?' So I'm going to savor the parts of the week that I enjoyed from working there." New episodes of SNL air on NBC Saturdays at 11:30 p.m. ET.