Leslie Jones confirms Saturday Night Live departure in statement

SNLWhile the news has been out there for a little while, today Leslie Jones went ahead and made the news official — she is departing Saturday Night Live leading into the start of the new season. The news comes as a surprise, as Jones supposedly still had years left on her contract, but it was her choice to move forward and explore some new avenues. One of those will be her continuing to do standup comedy, whereas another could be her hosting a Supermarket Sweep revival. You can read more about what’s being developed there over at the link here.

So what does Jones have to say about making the decision to depart? In a post on Twitter, here is some of what she had to say:

“Yes it’s true I am leaving Saturday Night Live. I cannot thank NBC, the producers, writers, and amazing crew enough for making SNL my second home these last five years. Lorne Michaels, you’ve changed my life in so many ways! Thank you for being my mentor and confidant and for always having my back. You not only have my loyalty but you have my heart too! You have shown me skills I never imagined I had. I leave a better performer because of you.

“To the incredible cast members: I will miss working, creating and laughing with you … I will miss holding it down with Kenan everyday, I will miss Cecily’s impression of me making me laugh at myself often, I will miss Kate’s loving hugs and talks when I needed. And of course Colin, you porcelain-skinned Ken doll. I will miss all my cast mates!! Especially being at the table reads with them!! Everyone needs to know Leslie Jones couldn’t have done any of the things I did without these people.”

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Jones went on to thank the fans before ending her statement with a note that she is not dead; instead, she is “graduating.”

Leslie will probably be best remembered as a source of tremendous energy on the show, as her Weekend Update segments were known for bold, brash humor and relatable stories. She proved her worth elsewhere in sketches and taking on impressions — we’re going to always love what she did as Samuel L. Jackson.

What do you think about Leslie departing Saturday Night Live? Are you going to miss her? Be sure to share right now in the comments, and remember to stick around to get some other news. (Photo: NBC.)

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