Natasha Lyonne, the co-creator and star of Netflix's Russian Doll will host the final episode of Season 47 of Saturday Night Live. NBC announced Friday that Lyonne would host the last episode of the season on May 21. While she has worked on a wide range of films, Lyonne is perhaps most well known for her role as Nicky Nichols on Netflix's Orange Is the New Black, which earned her an Emmy nomination in 2014. The actress recently gained three more Emmy nominations in 2019 for Russian Doll, now in its second season. Up next for her is Poker Face on Peacock.
"I might wear black clothes and smoke cigarettes, but in many ways I'm an optimist and believe in this underlying good-natured, happy ending type of shit," she told W magazine in April. "There's so much evidence to the contrary, in our society constantly, and yet I want to believe in us... At some point in my life, it was time to abandon the idea of going to a party having this cynical attitude of, like, standing against the wall and being like, 'This party sucks. These people are stupid.' It's like, 'No, man. You're at that party. Make it better.'"
Before her hosting, Lyonne had a long and storied history with several members of the SNL crew. She has known SNL alum Amy Poehler, for over 20 years, and they both created Russian Doll together. On NBC's Today in April, Poehler explained that she and Lyonne are more like family than friends.
"Natasha and I are hopefully an example of what chosen family looks like," the Parks and Rec star said. "You choose the people that are supposed to be in your life, and people that are in Natasha's life know that they love her deeply, and she loves deeply. According to Lyonne, Poehler has been "one of the loves" of her life."When we're making (the show), especially in the edit (process), it's like a love letter to Amy," Lyonne said.
In addition to Poehler, SML alum Maya Rudolph and Lyonne have also been friends for 20 years. Lyonne and Rudolph met in 2001 at Manhattan's Mercer Bar. "It was love at first sight," Rudolph told Glamour in 2019. For a short time, they were even roommates and have remained close through various creative collaborations. Two years ago, Lyonne, who Rudolph calls "Tashi," directed the Bridesmaids star in an experimental short named Cabiria, Charity, Chastity, about a woman making peace with her vaudeville past.
The actors also launched a production company together in 2018, Animal Pictures, which signed a first-look deal with Amazon. Among their recent projects are Sarah Cooper's Netflix comedy special Everything's Fine and several films and shows, including Desert People, a dramedy created by Lyonne and Alia Shawkat. Additionally, Lyonne was dating former SNL cast member Fred Armisen, introduced to her by Rudolph, Glamour reported. Their relationship started in 2014, but Lyonne announced their breakup in April.
The Slums of Beverly Hills actress will be joined on SNL by first-time musical guest Japanese Breakfast, currently touring North America to support its album Jubilee. It was previously reported that Selena Gomez would make her hosting debut Saturday, May 14, alongside musical guest Post Malone. Saturday Night Live airs Saturdays at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBC.