Saturday Night Live will return for its 48th season in October, NBC announced Monday. The long-running sketch comedy series will start a new era this fall, as seven cast members have left before the premiere. Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant, Kyle Mooney, Pete Davidson, Melissa Villasenor, Alex Moffat, and Aristotle Athari will not be back at Studio 8H in Rockefeller Plaza.
SNL Season 48 will kick off with a new episode on Oct. 1. New episodes will also air on Oct. 15. NBC has not announced guest hosts or musical performers for any of the new episodes. Each episode will air live at 11:30 p.m. ET and stream on Peacock. The premiere episode will also air live on the West Coast, starting at 8:30 p.m. PT.
SEASON 48 pic.twitter.com/Nclu3uluGk— Saturday Night Live – SNL (@nbcsnl) September 12, 2022
The news comes just hours before SNL veteran Kenan Thompson hosts the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards, which will air live on NBC and stream on Peacock, beginning at 8 p.m. ET. SNL is looking to add to its historic 86 Emmy awards, as it is up for multiple honors. McKinnon and Bowen Yang were both nominated for their performances in Season 47. The show itself is up for Outstanding Variety Sketch Series, an award it has won every year since 2017.
Season 47 closed with the final episodes for McKinnon, Bryant, Mooney, and Davidson, who all got the opportunity to say their goodbyes. However, it wasn't until earlier this month that Villasenor, Moffat, and Athari's exits were confirmed. Villasenor and Moffat joined the show in 2016, while Athari only appeared in Season 47.
"Oh my sweetie fans, my Melissa monsters, I know 'thas sah' me leaving the show, but! i felt this was my soul telling me its time to spread my wings," Villasenor told her fans on Twitter on Sept. 3. "Lots more for me to dig in and discover. what an honor to experience my kid dream, what an honor. forever grateful."
McKinnon's absence will be felt immediately. She won two Emmys during her time on the show, and she gave countless hilarious performances. During a stop on Live with Kelly and Ryan in July, McKinnon said she had been considering leaving for some time and felt now was the best opportunity to leave.
"I thought about [leaving] for a very long time, and it was very, very hard," McKinnon told Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest. "All I ever wanted to do in my whole life was be on Saturday Night Live. So, I did, I loved it, I had the best decade, and then I was just like, 'My body was tired,' and I felt like it was time." SNL is executive produced by Lorne Michaels and is produced by SNL Studios and Broadway Video. NBC has not announced new cast members yet.