*”Saturday Night Live” recently added six new cast members to their lineup but many were shocked to learn that this would be their sixth year in a row without a black female cast member.
Comedian Kenan Thompson has spent years portraying many female celebrities including Mo’Nique, Maya Angelou and Jennifer Hudson and has finally thrown in the cross-dressing towel.
On what the show would do about having to portray potential black female characters or celebrity spoofs, Thompson told TVGuide.com:
“I don’t know. We just haven’t done them. That’s what I’m saying. Maybe [Jay Pharaoh] will do it or something, but even he doesn’t really want to do it. “Thompson believes the lack of quality black female comedians is the blame rather than the showrunner Lorne Michaels or the series fault. “It’s just a tough part of the business,” Thompson says. “Like in auditions, they just never find ones that are ready.”
The series has only housed four black female cast members in its 38 year run including Yvonne Hudson (1980-81), Danitra Vance (1985-86), Ellen Cleghorne (1991-95) and Maya Rudolph (2000-2007). Pharoah has recently spoken out about the series’ diversity problem, telling theGrio, “They need to pay attention” and add a black woman to the cast. Pharoah even suggested his pick, Darmirra Brunson, who’s currently on Tyler Perry’s “Love They Neighbor.”
“Why do I think she should be on the show? Because she’s black first of all, and she’s really talented. She’s amazing. She needs to be on ‘SNL.’ I said it. And I believe they need to follow up with it like they said they were going to do last year.”
Meanwhile, as far as the new cast members, Thompson says they are doing just fine.
“They’re all contributing in different ways I think. They’ve been doing great job so far. They’re all very, very smart and talented, so that’s how it is. That’s the kind of people I guess that get the job.”