With Leslie Jones, “Saturday Night Live” has found a breakout star. She originally joined the series as a part of their writing staff, but within the past couple of years has gone on to become a Featured Player and one of the best performers during “Weekend Update.”
What’s all the more interesting about her is that according to Lorne Michaels, she wasn’t exactly someone that was on the radar prior to getting a gig. In a really fantastic profile of her work in the New Yorker, here is what the executive producer had to say:
“I tell Leslie all the time, ‘You’re everything we weren’t looking for.’ When someone’s funny, they’re funny. She was fully formed as a stand-up. I knew she’d have to learn the sketch thing, the technique part, but with some people you go, ‘Let’s just get them in the building.’ “
One other thing that we learned in this profile is that Jones did not take some comments from longtime cast member Kenan Thompson lying down. Prior to Sasheer Zamata being hired, Thompson had told TV Guide that the reason why there were no black women in the cast is because the show had not found any that were “ready.” Jones discussed some of her reaction to the New Yorker, stating that not long after her hire, she confronted him on the issue:
“I came at him, like, ‘I heard what you said, mother—–r.’ He said, ‘Come in, close the door, let’s talk.'”
Since that time the two have bonded, and Jones calls Thompson one of her best friends on the show.
“SNL” will return with new episodes starting on January 16 with Adam Driver as a host. Meanwhile, you will also get a chance to see Jones on the big screen next year in the highly-anticipated “Ghostbusters” revival.
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