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What Happened To The 1990s Cast Of SNL?

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Legendary sketch comedy show "Saturday Night Live" had a tumultuous decade during the 1980s, with casts ranging from the wildly successful (think undisputed mega-star Eddie Murphy) to the less-than-stellar (think Anthony Michael Hall). By the start of the 1990s, original "SNL" creator and showrunner Lorne Michaels was firmly back at the helm and ushering in a new set of talent that defined comedy for that particular decade and beyond. "SNL" alums like Adam Sandler and Mike Myers have gone on to create and produce immensely successful (and lucrative) cinematic comedy universes all their own. Other cast members, like Janeane Garafalo, Jay Mohr, and Sarah Silverman, had a tougher time finding their niches at "SNL," but went on to greater showbiz success in their post-"SNL" endeavors.

Let's take a closer look at all of those extremely talented performers who graced the hallowed halls of 30 Rockefeller Plaza's Studio 8H during the '90s, no matter how brief their "SNL" tenures. Sure, you might be up on all the obvious ones like Dana Carvey, David Spade, and the late Chris Farley, but what about Beth Cahill and Morwenna Banks? This list is for all "SNL" trivia nerds and those with a little nostalgia for this era of the show. 

A. Whitney Brown

Humorist A. Whitney Brown brought his droll brand of comedy to "SNL" both as a writer and a featured player for the series from 1986 to 1991. According to Vulture, Brown honed his comedy chops by street busking in San Francisco, eventually gaining national exposure with numerous television performances, including the all-important comedic star maker, "The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson." His signature "SNL" segment was "The Big Picture" during Weekend Update, delivering deadpan witticisms about the day's news and cultural trends.

Brown left "SNL" in 1991 and he continued to lampoon the world of news and opinion. In 1991, he released the book "The Big Picture: An American Commentary," and went on to write for Comedy Central's "The Daily Show" during the Craig Kilborn years. In the 2010s, Brown continued his pithy commentary for outlets like Daily Kos and kept an active social media presence on Twitter. These days, Brown and his wife, singer Carolyn Wonderland, reside in Austin, TX, where the Austin Chronicle reports the pair live in "creative coexistence," proving that sometimes the big picture can sometimes be found in one's own backyard.

Adam Sandler

For all his entertainment triumphs, Adam Sandler's post-"SNL" career success was never a sure thing. First joining the show as a writer in 1990, then as a cast member in 1991, his tenure on "SNL" came to an unceremonious end in 1995, with reports saying he either quit or was fired from the show. After "SNL," Sandler went to the movies, bringing his eccentric voices and wacky characterizations to films like "Billy Madison," "Happy Gilmore," and "The Waterboy." Sandler's brand of sophomoric humor has been a hit with audiences, with his movies grossing over $3 billion at the global box office (via The Numbers). He's also dabbled in dramatic acting, earning praise for his performances in "Punch Drunk Love," "The Meyerowitz Stories," and even winning an Independent Spirit Award for his role in "Uncut Gems."

In the streaming era, Adam Sandler has become a Netflix mainstay; his Happy Madison Productions signed on with the streaming service in 2014 and received contract extensions in 2017 and 2020. According to USA Today, Sandler's "Murder Mystery" was the most popular film on Netflix in 2019 and 2022's basketball movie "Hustle" has been lauded by the New York Times as a "terrific crowdpleaser." Clearly, Sandler's career continues to be a slam dunk.

Al Franken

By the time Al Franken left "SNL" in 1995, he was one of the show's most steadfast presences, having been with the sketch comedy series since it launched in 1975. Although he left the show in the early 1980s, he came back in 1985, writing for and appearing in numerous sketches; Franken himself cheekily referred to the '80s as "The Al Franken Decade." While at "SNL," Franken was a regular on the Weekend Update newsdesk, impersonated public figures like Pat Robertson and Henry Kissinger, and created his signature character, self-help TV host Stuart Smalley. The same year Franken left "SNL," the movie "Stuart Saves His Family" was released and flopped at the box office; according to Franken in "Live From New York: An Uncensored History of Saturday Night Live," it lost $15 million for the movie's studio.

Despite this unfortunate setback, Franken moved forward with his career, shifting into political commentary and satire with the books "Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot and Other Observations" and "Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them." He then moved into broadcasting, with "The Al Franken Show" becoming, according to Vanity Fair, the most popular program on the now-defunct Air America radio. Franken became U.S. Senator for his home state of Minnesota in 2008 and resigned from office in 2017 after a sexual misconduct scandal, a decision he told The New Yorker he regrets. While no longer in public office, Franken continues to be involved in the political discourse with "The Al Franken Podcast" and public appearances.

Ana Gasteyer

Ana Gasteyer joined "Saturday Night Live" in 1996, a critical time in the show's history. With the departure of cast members like Adam Sandler, Chris Farley, and Mike Myers, and the show being derided by critics in profiles like New York Magazine's "Comedy Isn't Funny," "SNL" was in dire need of fresh talent and energy. Gasteyer was one of the fresh faces to become a Not-Ready-for-Primetime Player in the latter half of the '90s, bringing with her comedy chops honed at The Groundlings comedy theater. Her impeccable impressions of celebrities like Martha Stewart, Celine Dion, and Hilary Rodham Clinton, as well as original characters like NPR host Margaret Jo and music teacher Bobbi Mohan-Culp, made Gasteyer one of "SNL" most valuable players. Gasteyer notes in the book "Live From New York: An Uncensored History of Saturday Night Live" that she and fellow female cast mates Molly Shannon and Cheri Oteri were often called the best thing on the show.

Gasteyer left "SNL" in 2002 and continued her comedy career in both film and television, reuniting with fellow "SNL" alums in movies like "Mean Girls" and "Wine Country" and taking on regular roles in TV shows such as "Suburgatory," "People of Earth," and "The Goldbergs," among others. In addition to remaining an in-demand comedic actor, Gasteyer has branched out into music, releasing a holiday-themed jazz album and podcast "Sugar and Booze" in 2019. She was also a contestant on the singing competition TV series "The Masked Singer" disguised as a tree. For Gasteyer, her career has been a good thing.

Beth Cahill

Beth Cahill's tenure on "Saturday Night Live" was brief. She appeared as a featured cast member during the 1991–1992 season, tapping into her Chicago roots by playing characters like Superfan Bob Swerski's (George Wendt) daughter, Miss "South Side of Chicago" Denise Swerski. Cahill also portrayed, alongside Melanie Hutsell and Siobhan Fallon, the Valley Girl-accented sorority sisters of Delta Delta Delta, and she impersonated Ed McMahon's wife, Pam Hurn.

After her single season on "SNL," Cahill has remained mostly out of the performance spotlight. According to Vulture, she made a few guest appearances on television shows like "Two Guys, a Girl, and a Pizza Place" and "Drunk History," but Cahill has mostly spent time pursuing her other talents, like costume design, cooking, and gardening. In recent years, Cahill has worked under the Delishytown moniker, sharing her recipes and garden design on social media.

Cheri Oteri

Cheri Oteri's exuberant comedic presence rejuvenated "Saturday Night Live" when she joined the show as a cast member in 1995. Oteri injected her irreverent energy into such characters as Arianna, one half of the Spartan Cheerleaders with Will Ferrell; Collette Reardon, taker of prescription pills; muumuu-clad angry neighbor Rita DelVecchio; and impatient employee Nadeen, who continually tells customers to "simmer down now." Oteri was also a deft celebrity impersonator, tackling famous folks like Debbie Reynolds, Judge Judith Sheindlin, and, most famously, journalist Barbara Walters. Her kinetic versatility had Vulture declaring Oteri "SNL's quintessential tiny theater geek firecracker."

Oteri departed Studio 8H in 2000 after five seasons. Since her time on "SNL," Oteri has been a consistent supporting player in Hollywood, taking on smaller roles in both film and television. She's appeared in movies like "Scary Movie," "Southland Tales," and "Grown Ups 2," and has made stops on hit TV shows like "Ally McBeal," "Curb Your Enthusiasm," and "Boston Legal." She also earned an Emmy nomination for her guest role on the NBC sitcom "Just Shoot Me." In addition to acting, Oteri has also co-written several short films and she shares her busy life and comedic sensibilities with fans on her Instagram account. 

Chris Elliott

Chris Elliott was already a formidable comedic presence when he signed on as a "Saturday Night Live" cast member in 1994. The son of comedian Bob Elliott, Chris had been a writer and actor on "Late Night With David Letterman;" starred in his own sitcom, "Get a Life;" and wrote and acted in the movie "Cabin Boy." He recalls in the book "Live From New York: An Uncensored History of Saturday Night Live" that he joined "SNL" with the false assumption that others would be writing his material. He tried quitting the show mid-season to no avail and eventually left the show after one season.

Elliott's time at "SNL" is but a brief blip in his prolific comedy career. Since leaving "SNL" in 1995, Elliott has remained a reliably funny go-to performer. Elliott acted in small yet hilarious roles in numerous movies, including the Farrelly Brothers comedies "Kingpin" and "There's Something About Mary." He continued his television work in short-lived comedies like "The Naked Truth," "Dilbert," and "The Weber Show," his flops balanced with recurring roles on hits like "King of the Hill," and "Everybody Loves Raymond." While his time on "SNL" was fleeting, he became associated with the show once again when his daughter Abby Elliott became a cast member for four seasons from 2008 to 2012. Recently, Elliott starred in the much-beloved, Emmy Award-winning comedy series "Schitt's Creek" as eccentric mayor Roland Schitt.

Chris Farley

Chris Farley was one of the breakout stars of "Saturday Night Live" in the early 1990s. Whether he was gyrating during a Chippendales audition dance, bumbling his way through celebrity interviews on "The Chris Farley Show," or giving motivational pep talks as Matt Foley, Farley knew how to literally throw himself into his sketches. Joining the series in 1990 as a middle group player, then moving on to repertory player in 1991, Farley was considered one of the "Bad Boys of SNL," a group that also included David Spade, Chris Rock, Adam Sandler, and Rob Schneider. Their sophomoric humor buoyed the show for the first half of the '90s, but by 1995, "SNL" was flailing and Farley was fired from the show.

While already having appeared in a number of movies during his "SNL" tenure including "Wayne's World," "Coneheads," and "Airheads," Farley was catapulted into film stardom after leaving the show. He teamed up with David Spade in the movies "Tommy Boy" and "Black Sheep," and went on to star in "Beverly Hills Ninja" and "Almost Heroes." Farley's career was cut tragically short when he died from a drug overdose in 1997 at the age of 33, having struggled for years with excessive drug and alcohol use. A number of movies with starring roles initially meant for Farley, including "Shrek" and a biopic about silent movie star Fatty Arbuckle, were either recast or shelved after his death (via Vulture).

Chris Kattan

Chris Kattan's seven seasons as a "Saturday Night Live" cast member were defined by his high-energy, slightly clueless characters. Joining "SNL" in 1996, Kattan played recurring roles like southern lawyer Suel Forrester and exotic dancer Mango, and he impersonated a number of celebrities, including David Duchovny and Antonio Banderas. If Haddaway's 1993 dance hit "What Is Love" is pumping on "SNL," chances are Kattan is head-bobbing to the beat as one half of the club-loving Butabi Brothers. Doug Butabi was one of Kattan's most-popular "SNL" characters, and, along with Will Ferrell's Steve Butabi, starred in the film "A Night at the Roxbury" in 1998 while still on the show.

Kattan left "SNL" in 2003, telling EW, "You can't do seven seasons of college, and you always want to leave when you're still loving the show and not bitter." Having starred in several movies in addition to "Roxbury," like "Corky Romano" and "Undercover Brother" during his "SNL" tenure, Kattan was ready to focus on his film career. Kattan has acted in a number of films, mostly in supporting character roles. In television, he's made appearances on shows like "How I Met Your Mother," voiced the title role in the cartoon series "Bunnicula," and competed on "Dancing With the Stars." He released his controversial memoir "Baby Don't Hurt Me" in 2019, chronicling his stint on "SNL" and sharing details of an on-set injury that led to a painkiller addiction.

Chris Parnell

Dubbed "Ice Man" by fellow "Saturday Night Live" cast member Colin Quinn for his ability to stay calm under pressure, Chris Parnell brought his cool straight-man energy to the Studio 8H soundstage for eight seasons. Parnell also holds the dubious honor of being the only "Saturday Night Live" cast member to be fired twice from the show: he was fired after three seasons in 2001, subsequently rehired mid-season, then let go again in 2006 amid budget cuts. Of his second firing, Parnell tells the Washington Post, "I was ready to go off," adding "I had done my time."

Parnell's run on "SNL" was just the beginning of his prolific comedy career as a go-to deadpan comedic foil in both film and television. He stayed close to his not-ready-for-prime-time roots as Dr. Spaceman on NBC sitcom "30 Rock" and co-starred in ABC's "Suburgatory" with former "SNL" star Ana Gasteyer. Parnell is also a prolific voice actor, giving life to characters on hit animated series like "Archer" and "Rick and Morty." Parnell's recent movie work includes the Netflix comedy "Senior Year" and supporting roles in reboots like "Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers" and "Not So Home Alone." With his busy work schedule, one hopes Parnell will have a "Lazy Sunday" to himself soon.

Chris Rock

The ever-versatile and extremely prolific comedian Chris Rock got his big career break on "Saturday Night Live." Having made his movie debut in a small role in 1987's "Beverly Hills Cop II" thanks to "SNL" alum and mentor Eddie Murphy (via Variety), Rock became an "SNL" cast member in 1990. Rock says in the book "Live From New York" that he was cast in reaction to the show's lack of Black cast members. Fox's competing comedy show, "In Living Color," featured a diverse cast of comedians, but "SNL" hadn't featured Black performers since Damon Wayans and Danitra Vance in the '85-'86 season. On "SNL," Rock played characters like "I'm Chillin'" host Onski and "The Dark Side" host Nat X. In 1993, he was fired from the show after expressing his desire to leave. He then jumped over to "In Living Color" for that show's final season.

In the decades since Rock's stint on "SNL," he's remained at the top of his comedy game. Rock is a truly multi-talented entertainer, having acted in, written, directed, and produced a slew of film and television projects. He's done everything from the goofy "Grown Ups" and family-friendly "Madagascar" film series to more dramatic fare like FX's "Fargo." Rock even chronicled this professional tension between silliness and seriousness in his film "Top Five." He's also stayed true to his comedy roots, releasing a number of HBO stand-up comedy specials including "Bring the Pain" and "Bigger & Blacker." Rock became the center of global headlines in 2022 after being slapped by Will Smith on stage at the 94th Academy Awards.

Colin Quinn

Colin Quinn spent five years at "Saturday Night Live," first as a writer for the '95-'96 season, then as featured player, and finally as a cast member from '96–'00. When he joined "SNL," Quinn was already a seasoned performer, having appeared in hit '80s movies like "Three Men and a Baby" and "Married to the Mob," served as the announcer for the MTV game show "Remote Control," and cut his teeth as a stand-up comedian. Quinn also wrote for the comedy series "In Living Color" and had a story credit for the 1996 movie "Celtic Pride." Clearly a comedy professional, he brought his Brooklyn bravado to "SNL" with characters like Lenny the Lion and Joe Blow. Quinn took over the "Weekend Update" anchor desk in 1998 after Norm Macdonald's abrupt firing. He stayed on as "Weekend Update" anchor until he left the show in 2000.

Quinn kicked off his post-"SNL" career with the short-lived NBC series "The Colin Quinn Show," then quickly moved on to his more successful Comedy Central show "Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn," which ran from 2002–2004. He continues to act in both film and television, nabbing supporting roles in movies like "Trainwreck" and "Grown Ups," and playing a featured role in Lena Dunham's zeitgeist-capturing HBO series "Girls." When he's not on screen, Quinn is frequently found on stage, creating and starring in a number of one-man shows. He's also written several books, including "Overstated: A Coast-to-Coast Roast of the 50 States."

Dana Carvey

Dana Carvey was one of the "Saturday Night Live" cast members whose time on the show straddled the 1980s and 1990s. Carvey started his "SNL" career in 1986, reinvigorating the flagging late-night show in its mid-'80s doldrums. A little-known comedian then, Carvey recalls in the book "Live From New York" that he kicked off his very first "SNL" show with "Church Chat" starring the Church Lady. The sketch was a hit and Carvey was off and running on his successful seven-season run on the show. Carvey's impeccable impressions lampooning celebrities and politicians, along with his original characters like "Wayne's World" co-host Garth Algar, the Grumpy Old Man, and Austrian bodybuilder Hans, became staples of the show. Carvey won an Emmy Award for his "SNL" work in 1993.

Carvey left "SNL" in 1993 and got busy working in TV and movies. Having starred in two "Wayne's World" movies and 1990's "Opportunity Knocks" while starring on "SNL," Carvey continued his film work in the mid-90s with "Clean Slate" and "Trapped in Paradise." On television, Carvey starred in ABC's short-lived yet highly influential "The Dana Carvey Show," which served as a launching pad for future comedy stars such as Stephen Colbert and Steve Carrell. After the disastrous reception of his 2002 movie "The Master of Disguise," a movie the A/V Club called "a film about as funny as a seeping wound," Carvey retreated from show business. These days, outside of making the occasional appearance, Carvey co-hosts the podcast "Fly on the Wall With Dana Carvey and David Spade," featuring conversations with funny folks, including many "SNL" alums.

Darrell Hammond

Darrell Hammond has the second-longest tenure of any "Saturday Night Cast" cast member. Appearing on the show for 14 seasons, Hammond's time on the show has only been matched by Kenan Thompson, who surpassed him in 2017. Throughout the '90s and '00s, Hammond became one of the show's go-to celebrity impersonators. His caricatures of politicians like Bill Clinton, Al Gore, and Dick Cheney anchored "SNL's" political satire. Hammond's hilariously inept Sean Connery on "Celebrity Jeopardy!" served as the perfect foil for the perpetually frustrated Alex Trebek (Will Ferrell).

While Hammond left "SNL" in 2009, he hasn't completely departed the series. In 2014, Hammond became the show's announcer after the death of the longtime voice of "SNL," Don Pardo. He also appeared on a number of episodes in 2016, performing his impression of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump. When he was ousted in favor of Alec Baldwin's Trump, Hammond told the Washington Post he felt hurt by the decision. Outside of his continued work on "SNL," Hammond has appeared in TV series like "Are We There Yet?" and "At Home With Amy Sedaris." He was also one of the comedians to play Colonel Sanders for KFC, a gig after which he said he felt "played" by the fast-food chain (via Hollywood Reporter).

David Koechner

David Koechner appeared on "Saturday Night Live" for a single season, during the show's mid-'90s talent transitional period. After the ousting of "SNL" stars like Chris Farley and Adam Sandler and the departure of stalwarts like Mike Myers and Kevin Nealon in 1995, Koechner was one of the fresh faces from The Second City in Chicago cast to infuse new energy into the late-night program. While on "SNL," Koechner played characters like good ol' boy Gerald "T-Bones" Tibbons and one half of the fawning, wigged-out duo Lucien Callow (Mark McKinney) and Fagen.

After "SNL," Koechner stayed in the show's orbit, collaborating with "SNL" co-star Will Ferrell on movies like "Anchorman," "Talladega Nights: The Legend of Ricky Bobby," and "Semi Pro." He also appeared in a number of projects with Steve Carrell, the husband of his Second City and "SNL" castmate Nancy Walls, including the movies "The 40-Year-Old Virgin," "Get Smart," and the massively popular U.S. adaptation of "The Office." He even adapted his "SNL" character "T-Bones" Tibbons into a Comedy Central series, "The Naked Trucker and T-Bones Show." Koechner has also had several run-ins with the law, including a citation and an arrest for driving under the influence (via Hollywood Reporter).

David Spade

For as big a star as David Spade has become, his "Saturday Night Live" success wasn't assured. Starting as a writer in 1990, Spade moved up the ranks to become a full cast member in 1993. Spade wrote in his memoir, "Almost Interesting: The Memoir," that he was desperate for one of his ideas to stick, and he eventually found a hit with "Hollywood Minute," his sarcastic and quick-witted take on celebrity gossip. Spade took down some of Tinseltown's brightest stars with his wry observations, but not everyone appreciated his roasting. When Spade cracked a "stupid joke" about Eddie Murphy's flailing career, Murphy himself got on the phone to berate Spade. While his sardonic presence might have rubbed some the wrong way, Spade found continued "SNL" success with "Gap Girl" Christy Henderson, Dick Clark's receptionist, and a steward at Total Bastard Airlines.

When Spade said "buh-bye" to "SNL" in 1996, he quickly moved into a successful career, co-starring with his "SNL" buddy Chris Farley in the movies "Tommy Boy" and "Black Sheep." He also garnered an Emmy nomination for playing Dennis Finch in the NBC sitcom "Just Shoot Me." Over the years, Spade has worked closely with former "SNL" co-star Adam Sandler's Happy Madison Productions, with his star vehicles "Joe Dirt," "Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star," and "Father of the Year" being just some of the movies produced by the company. A reliable deliverer of caustic humor for decades, Spade continues to dish out his piercing hot-takes with no signs of stopping. Certainly, no one is asking him, "...and you are?"

Dennis Miller

Acerbic comedian Dennis Miller boarded "Saturday Night Live" in 1985 to anchor the "Weekend Update" desk, turning the longstanding sketch into a platform for his personal idiosyncrasies and esoteric wit. Jon Lovitz was initially set to man the "Weekend Update" desk, but Miller told Vulture that because Lovitz needed time for costume changes between sketches, Miller got the gig. Miller infused "Weekend Update" with his punchy and sardonic wit, often bobbing his head and giggling his way through the segment. His mannerisms were regularly satirized by Dana Carvey, with the occasional additional impression performed by guest Tom Hanks. Outside of the occasional sketch or commercial parody, Miller mostly stuck to his "Weekend Update" duties until he left "SNL" in 1991.

While his post-"SNL" resume is dotted with small supporting TV and movie roles, Miller's success on "Weekend Update" really geared him up for numerous hosting opportunities. After "SNL," he briefly hosted the syndicated late-night talk show "The Dennis Miller Show," then moved to HBO for the Emmy Award-winning "Dennis Miller Live." In 2000, ABC made the controversial decision to hire Miller as a color commentator for "Monday Night Football" to revive the telecast's sagging energy. Audiences didn't take to Miller and he was replaced by John Madden in 2002. After his stint in the sports world, and his changing political affiliation in the aftermath of 9/11, Miller moved toward mixing news and comedy, hosting "Dennis Miller" on CNBC, making appearances on Fox News, hosting "The Dennis Miller Show" radio program, and leading the "The Dennis Miller Option" podcast. Surely, Miller has plenty to tell you yet.

Ellen Cleghorne

Ellen Cleghorne broke new ground on "Saturday Night Live," becoming the first Black woman to appear as a full cast member for more than one season, and the third Black woman on the show overall, following Yvonne Hudson and Danitra Vance (via Slate). A stand-up comedian with early stints on "Def Comedy Jam" and "In Living Color," Cleghorne came to "SNL" in 1991 as a middle cast member, then advanced to repertory player in 1993. She played original characters like the exceedingly excited yet easily offended NBC page Zoraida and "Weekend Update" correspondent Queen Shaniqua. She also performed impressions of celebrities such as Anita Baker and Whoopi Goldberg. Cleghorne was among the many cast members to leave "SNL" in 1995, with Vulture reporting she chose to focus her creative energies on starring in her own WB sitcom, "Cleghorne!"

"Cleghorne!" was canceled in its first season and Cleghorne admits to Slate, "I don't think I was ready." While she might not have been prepared for sitcom stardom, Cleghorne appeared in hit movies like "Armageddon," "Coyote Ugly," and "Little Nicky." Eventually, Cleghorne pivoted into academia, earning her master's and Ph.D. in performance studies at New York University, where she's focused her work on Black comedy and comedians (via Jet). Outside of the classroom, Cleghorne still pursues her comedy and performance career, with recent credits including competing on "Worst Cook in America" and acting in the HBO Max series "That Damn Michael Che."

Fred Wolf

Writer and director Fred Wolf's work on "Saturday Night Live" was mostly behind the scenes. He served as both a staff writer and co-head writer for the storied late-night program. Before coming to "SNL" in 1991, Wolf performed stand-up on "An Evening at the Improv" and wrote for the short-lived talk show "The Pat Sajak Show." Wolf frequently penned material for the "Bad Boys of SNL," collaborating frequently with Adam Sandler, David Space, Rob Schneider, and Chris Farley (via Vulture). When Wolf was promoted to co-head writer in 1995 alongside Steve Higgins, he also was made a featured player. He made occasional appearances in front of the camera, stopping by "Weekend Update" and playing other bit roles.

Since Wolf's departure in 1997, he has consistently collaborated with his former "SNL" peers. His first official screenwriting credit is for 1996's Chris Farley-David Spade buddy comedy "Black Sheep." Wolf penned other movies for "SNL" alums, including Norm Macdonald's "Dirty Work," David Spade's "Joe Dirt," and the unofficial "Bad Boys of SNL" reunion films "Grown Ups" and "Grown Ups 2." He's also taken several turns as a director on movies like the Happy Madison Productions film "Strange Wilderness" and the Anna Farris vehicle "The House Bunny."

Horatio Sanz

Already a veteran of the improv comedy scene when he joined "Saturday Night Live" in 1998, Horatio Sanz brought his strategic laughter to Studio 8H as a featured player alongside Jimmy Fallon and Chris Parnell. He was promoted to repertory player in 1999, and portrayed characters like perpetual college sophomore Gobi, sassy Carol, and Debbie Downer's (Rachel Dratch) Uncle Frank. Like his "SNL" co-star Jimmy Fallon, Sanz was known for breaking character, giggling through some of his most notable sketches, including "More Cowbell" and "Debbie Downer: Disney World." Sanz was let go from "SNL" in 2006 reportedly due to budget cuts (via Chicago Tribune).

Sanz's time was cut short on "SNL," but he found career longevity by appearing in a number of television projects, including co-star credits on shows like "Big Lake," "In the Motherhood," and "Great News," and recurring parts on "Black Monday," "GLOW," and "The Mandalorian." He's also racked up numerous animation voice credits and movie supporting roles on his performance resume. In recent years, Sanz's time on "SNL" has been put in a new light, as a 2021 lawsuit has accused Sanz of grooming and sexually assaulting a teenage girl while he was a cast member on the show. Sanz's attorney told NBC News at the time the allegations went public that they were "categorically false."

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Jan Hooks

Whether she was belting out show tunes as Candy Sweeney of The Sweeney Sisters, letting mascara stream down her face as Tammy Faye Bakker, or transforming into political figure Nancy Reagan, Jan Hooks' commitment to her "Saturday Night Live" characters made her a valuable not-ready-for-prime-time player. Hooks joined "SNL" as a repertory player in 1986, although she wasn't a first choice for the show. According to Vulture, Hooks was initially passed over by "SNL" in favor of Joan Cusack. When Lorne Michaels revamped "SNL" in its 12th season to save it from sagging ratings, Hooks was one of the fresh faces cast to inject new energy into the flailing program. Her vast catalog of impressions, including Sinead O'Connor, Ivana Trump, and Hillary Clinton, made Hooks a go-to choice for topical satire.

Hooks left "SNL" in 1991, bringing her comedic timing and Southern lilt to the hit CBS sitcom "Designing Women." She took on minor roles in films like "Batman Returns" and "Simon Birch," and had recurring roles in the hit television shows "3rd Rock From the Sun" and "The Simpsons." Hooks stayed close to her "SNL" roots, collaborating with fellow show alum Martin Short on a number of projects, including his short-lived sitcom "The Martin Short Show," the comedy series "Primetime Glick," and its spin-off movie "Jiminy Glick in Lalawood." Despite her success and talents, Hooks was ambivalent about show business, with Grantland reporting her time at "SNL" was riddled with anxiety. In the 2000s, she led a mostly private life; as her fellow "SNL" cast mate and former boyfriend Kevin Nealon wrote in Time, "it seemed as though she was shunning Hollywood." Hooks died in 2014 from throat cancer at age 57.

Janeane Garofalo

Janeane Garofalo's brief tenure on "Saturday Night Live" was, according to accounts from her friends, "the most miserable experience of [her] life" (via New York Magazine). Garofalo joined "SNL" in 1994 after success on the '90s alternative comedy scene. Her stint on the short-lived yet highly influential sketch comedy series "The Ben Stiller Show," as well as a featured role in Emmy Award-winning series "The Larry Sanders Show," familiarized television audiences with Garofalo's distinct brand of sardonic Gen-X humor. She was primed for stardom, and Garofalo shares in the book "Live From New York" that she thought working on "SNL" would be "the greatest job in the world," but instead she felt like she was such a poor fit on the show she wanted to quit after the first week. While she didn't leave 30 Rock after her first show, Garofalo departed "SNL" before the end of the season.

"SNL" might not have been a good platform for Garofalo's subversively deadpan persona, but she found plenty of success as an actress, comedian, and political pundit. Garofalo has garnered over 150 acting credits, appearing in everything from cult comedy classic movies like "Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion" and "Wet Hot American Summer" to serious dramatic TV shows like "24" and "The West Wing." She's also kept an active stand-up comedy career, touring and releasing specials on HBO and Seeso. Garafalo was also a key talent on the now-defunct Air America radio, sharply quipping and riffing on the early '00s political scene. No doubt, Garofalo remains one of Hollywood's go-to sharp, sardonic comedic wits.

Jay Mohr

It's safe to assume that Jay Mohr's time on "Saturday Night Live" was not the highlight of his comedy career. A stand-up comedian and host of MTV's "Lip Service" game show, Mohr was cast on "SNL" in 1993, staying on as a featured player and writer for two seasons. Mohr candidly chronicled his time on "SNL" in his 2004 memoir "Gasping for Airtime: Two Years in the Trenches of Saturday Night Live," saying his short stretch on the show was defined by "no guidance, no support, and virtually no airtime" (via A/V Club).

Mohr recognizes the career-altering power of being a not-ready-for-prime-time player, telling the Calgary Herald, "When you get the show your life changes because it's the first line on your resume." His post-"SNL" credits still have plenty of clout. After "Saturday Night Live," Mohr's acting career took off, with supporting roles in the movie "Jerry Maguire" and the TV show "The Jeff Foxworthy Show." Since the '90s, Mohr has been consistently acting, taking on roles in both comedies and dramas. He also became a successful television producer, earning an Emmy nomination for producing and hosting the NBC reality competition series "Last Comic Standing."

Jim Breuer

Jim Breuer joined the cast of "Saturday Night Live" in 1995 during the show's transition away from its "Bad Boys" era. Known for his original characters like '80s music aficionado Goat Boy and heavy metal rocker Gunner Olsen, as well as celebrity impressions like Joe Pesci, Breuer brought his wacky comedic energy to Studio 8H for three seasons, leaving the show in 1998. In an interview with Joe Rogan, Breuer said the intense working conditions on the show left him miserable and angry, with executive producer Lorne Michaels telling him "you're too nice for this business."

Breuer left the pressures of weekly sketch comedy and embraced a more mellow brand of laughs by starring as Brian in the stoner comedy film "Half Baked." He has done voice work in movies like "Titan A.E." and "Zookeeper" and made appearances on television comedies like "Chappelle's Show" and "Kevin Can Wait." With his last acting credit in 2017, Breuer has cultivated an active career away from Tinseltown, creating content across multiple platforms for his self-dubbed "Breunivese." He also continues to perform stand-up comedy, making headlines in recent years for his stance on COVID-19 vaccinations.

Jimmy Fallon

Known just as much for breaking character as he was bringing for the laughs on "Saturday Night Live," Jimmy Fallon has become one of Hollywood's most successful funnymen. Arriving on "SNL" in 1998 as a featured player and moving to a repertory player the following year, Fallon brought his masterful celebrity impressions to late-night television, including Bee Gees singer Barry Gibb, acting legend Robert De Niro, and comedian Jerry Seinfeld. Fallon's penchant for off-script giggles became well known among his fellow "SNL" cast mates, with Fallon sharing with Jess Cagle and Julia Cunningham that players like Will Ferrell would deliberately try to make him laugh during sketches. Although he was susceptible to surprise crack-ups, Fallon fared better at keeping his composure while co-anchoring "Weekend Update" with Tina Fey.

Fallon, who had become a break-out star of "SNL," departed the series in 2004 after six seasons to pursue a promising movie career. Having acted in films like 2000's rock music drama "Almost Famous" and 2003's "Anything Else," Fallon was primed for leading-man status. However, he only found middling success with '00s comedy movies like "Taxi," "Fever Pitch," and "Whip It!," and even Fallon admitted to the Washington Post that his film career "really didn't work out that great." Fallon finally hit his stride when he returned to his late-night roots in 2009 as the host of "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon." He then took the reins of NBC's fabled "The Tonight Show" in 2014, where he continues to deliver laughs.

Jon Lovitz

"Master Thespian" Jon Lovitz brought his eccentric brand of comedy to "Saturday Night Live" beginning in 1985. A member of The Groundlings comedy troupe, Lovitz was a struggling actor before he was catapulted to fame as an "SNL" repertory player. He reinvigorated "SNL" with oddball characters like pathological liar Tommy Flanagan, Girl Watcher, the aptly named Annoying Man, and the devil himself, Mephistopheles. Lovitz's silly bravado and satirical dramatic flair kept him "acting" on "SNL" until he left the show in 1990.

Already appearing in a number of films during his "SNL" tenure, Lovitz continued his movie career immediately following his departure from the series. While he acted in box office bombs like "Mom and Dad Save the World" and "North," Lovitz also had roles in hit movies like "A League of Their Own." He also worked steadily in television, voicing the role of film critic Jay Sherman in the animated series "The Critic" and joining the cast of "NewsRadio" after the death of his "SNL" co-star Phil Hartman. In the decades since "SNL," Lovitz has remained a consistently funny presence in Hollywood and the comedy world, racking up more than 100 acting credits and owning a now-defunct comedy club in Los Angeles. Lovitz continues to act and perform. According to his Twitter account, he's "just proud to keep it going!!!"

Julia Sweeney

Julia Sweeney joined "Saturday Night Live" in 1990. A former accountant, Sweeney honed her comedy chops as a Groundlings performer, where she co-wrote and starred in the play "Mea's Big Apology" and created one of her best-known "SNL" characters, the androgynous Pat. When she wasn't playing Pat, Sweeney was a solid supporting actor in many of the show's skits, including the iconic first appearance of Chris Farley's motivational speaker Matt Foley, an experience she told EW was "the funniest friggin' thing that was happening on the planet." Although she stifled laughs while working with Farley, Sweeney's relegation to supporting roles in contrast to her male colleagues' stardom left her frustrated, and she eventually broke her "SNL" contract early and left the show in 1994 (via Salon).

Sweeney's life immediately after departing "SNL" was not smooth sailing. Her 1994 film "It's Pat" was a notorious flop, a movie Variety called a "no-joke comedy." A year later, she was divorced, caring for her terminally ill brother, and received a cancer diagnosis herself, events that she chronicled in her one-woman play "God Said 'Ha!'" Sweeney earned a Grammy nomination for the recording of "God Said 'Ha!'" and the filmed performance was executive produced by Quentin Tarantino. Sweeney has gone on to other life-based performance monologues such as "In the Family Way," "Letting Go of God," and "Julia Sweeney: Older and Wider." When she's not on stage, Sweeney has appeared in numerous film and television projects, with recent projects including shows like "American Gods," "Shrill," and the sitcom "Call Me Kat."

Kevin Nealon

During his nearly 10-year stint on "Saturday Night Live," Kevin Nealon became one of the show's most dependable funnymen. Starting his career on the LA stand-up comedy scene, Nealon joined "SNL" in 1986 after passing an audition that his friend and fellow "SNL" newcomer Dana Carvey helped arrange (via People). Advancing to repertory player in 1987, Nealon played such classic "SNL" characters as Franz, one part of the bodybuilding duo Hans (Dana Carvey) and Franz; Mr. Subliminal; and Mr. No Depth Perception. He also took the reins of the "Weekend Update" anchor desk in 1991 and remained on duty until Norm Macdonald replaced him in 1994. Nealon left "SNL" in 1995, a move that he revealed on The Daily Beast's "The Last Laugh" podcast was somewhat forced.

After his "SNL" run, Nealon became a reliable comedic staple in Hollywood. His '90s sitcoms "Champs" and "Hiller and Diller" might have been short-lived, but he eventually found lasting success playing stoner Doug Wilson on the Showtime series "Weeds" and the CBS sitcom "Man With a Plan." Nealon has kept working with his fellow "SNL" alums, making numerous appearances in Happy Madison Productions films, from 1995's "Happy Gilmore" to 2018's "Father of the Year." He continues to perform stand-up comedy and he's produced a YouTube series, "Hiking With Kevin," where he interviews celebrity guests while they hit the trails.

Laura Kightlinger

Laura Kightlinger's time on "Saturday Night Live" was brief, but it served as a launching pad for a lucrative comedic career. Kightlinger started performing comedy at Emerson College before moving into the stand-up scene and was brought on to "SNL" in 1994 as a writer and featured player (via Vulture). When she was on screen, Kightlinger mostly stuck to celebrity impersonations like "Entertainment Tonight" actor Mary Hart and prosecutor Marcia Clark. She also delivered commentary on "Weekend Update," and, according to Vulture, even auditioned to co-anchor the segment with Norm Macdonald.

Kightlinger quit "SNL" in 1995 after one season and didn't miss a beat in her pursuit of laughs. She quickly moved on to star in and write for Roseanne's short-lived "SNL" competitor "Saturday Night Special," then started to amass a number of acting credits, including appearances projects with comedians David Cross, Louis CK, and her romantic partner Jack Black. In the 2000s and 2010s, Kightlinger racked up writing and producing credits on the hit sitcoms "Will & Grace" and "2 Broke Girls," and she executive produced and starred in the well-reviewed "The Minor Accomplishments of Jackie Woodman." Recently, Kightlinger has acted in popular comedy series like "PEN15," "Curb Your Enthusiasm," and "The Goldbergs."

Mark McKinney

By the time he joined the cast of "Saturday Night Live" as a repertory player in 1995, Mark McKinney had already been working behind the scenes on the show. Hired by Lorne Michaels to write for "SNL" in 1985, McKinney wrote for the show and appeared in a number of uncredited voice roles until 1990 (via Vulture). A member of the Canadian sketch comedy troupe The Kids in the Hall, McKinney had just wrapped six seasons of that series when he returned to Studio 8H to star in front of the camera. A solid supporting player, McKinney performed reliable celebrity impressions, imitating names like Jim Carrey and Bill Gates.

McKinney left "SNL" in 1997, but he remained a friend to the show's extended universe. He appeared in "SNL" '90s movies "A Night at the Roxbury," "Superstar," and 2000's "The Ladies Man." He has also stayed active in the world of television, co-creating and starring in the award-winning Canadian series "Slings and Arrows" and acting in the NBC series "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" and "Superstore." All the while, McKinney has stayed creatively engaged with The Kids in the Hall. With the movie "Kids in the Hall: Brain Candy," the TV mini-series "Death Comes to Town," and touring live shows, the troupe has never slowed down. In 2022, they released a revival series that the Los Angeles Times praised as "well-written," "expertly performed," and "unashamedly odd."

Melanie Hutsell

Melanie Hutsell's time on "Saturday Night Live" was anything but "grody." She brought her Valley Girl-style and spot-on celebrity impressions to the boys club of early '90s "SNL" when she joined the cast in 1991. Hutsell gave fresh, topical takes on everything from television's favorite middle child Jan Brady, actress Tori Spelling, and figure skater Tonya Harding. She also played original characters like Delta Delta Delta sorority sister Di. In a total bummer move, Hutsell was fired from "SNL" in 1994 after three years on the series. Hutsell shared on the podcast "Sincerely Fortune" that she and the other female cast members were overshadowed by their male counterparts.

After "SNL," much to her dismay, she was not asked to audition to play Jan Brady in the 1995 film "The Brady Bunch Movie," which she told Out was "one of those disappointments in life." Hutsell originated the role in "The Real Live Brady Bunch" play, but the part eventually went to actress Jennifer Elise Cox. After 1999's "Can't Stop Dancing," Hutsell took a break from showbiz to be with her family. Since returning to Hollywood in the 2010s, she's taken on a number of small roles on established TV series like "The United States of Tara," "Suburgatory," "Transparent," and "Lady Dynamite." Hutsell also has appeared in movies such as the blockbuster comedy film "Bridesmaids" and independent films like the 2019 dramedy "Mother's Little Helpers."

Michael McKean

Comedy veteran Michael McKean was already a star when he was brought on to "Saturday Night Live" in 1994 to replace Phil Hartman's mature presence, telling IGN he was akin to being "David Spade's dad." Before joining the "SNL" cast, McKean experienced meteoric television fame playing greaser Lenny Kosnowski on the sitcom "Laverne and Shirley" and was the star of movies like the cult classic "This Is Spinal Tap," acting alongside "SNL" players Harry Shearer and Christopher Guest. He also had already hosted an episode of "SNL" in 1984, so McKean was more than ready to work with the late-night gang. McKean acted in and wrote a number of sketches, leaving him to say of his one-season "SNL" stint, "I can't say I was completely miserable."

McKean's time on "Saturday Night Live" is a small blip on his gargantuan comedic resume. With over 200 acting credits, McKean has remained a performance powerhouse. From movie and television roles to animated voice work and roles on Broadway, McKean does it all. In recent years, McKean has been honored for his dramatic work, receiving an Emmy nomination for his guest role on "Better Call Saul." In 2022, a sequel to "This Is Spinal Tap" tentatively titled "Spinal Tap II" was announced, with McKean back as David St. Hubbins (via Deadline).

Mike Myers

Before he pranced around the big screen as British superspy Austin Powers and lurked in swamps as the gaseous ogre Shrek, Mike Myers was one of "Saturday Night Live's" superstar cast members. Boarding "SNL" in 1989 as a featured player, then advancing to repertory player that same year, Myers had built his comedy skills at The Second City in Toronto and on the variety show "It's Only Rock and Roll." He brought two of his best-known character creations with him to "SNL": Basement-dwelling hard rocker Wayne Campbell and German expressionist television host Dieter. Although clearly talented, Myers was nervous about joining the "SNL" cast; he told the Toronto Sun, "I thought I was going to get fired every week, and that's the God's honest truth." But he had nothing to fear, as Myers' creativity flourished at "SNL," adding new characters to his repertoire like "Coffee Talk" host Linda Richman, "All Things Scottish" shop owner Stuart Rankin, and "Handsome Actor" Lank Thompson.

By the time Myers left "SNL" in 1995, he was already a movie star, having starred in the "SNL" spinoff movies "Wayne's World" and "Wayne's World 2," as well as the 1993 film "So I Married An Axe Murderer." The release of "Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery" in 1997 inadvertently launched an over half-billion dollar movie franchise (via Hollywood Reporter). Myers also voiced the title role in the multi-billion dollar grossing "Shrek" cinematic universe. Myers has also had his share of flops, notably 2008's "The Love Guru," which the New York Times deemed "downright antifunny" and his tepidly reviewed 2022 Netflix series "The Pentaverate."

Molly Shannon

Molly Shannon certainly was one of the "superstars" of "Saturday Night Live" in the 1990s. She joined as a featured player in 1995 to replace the departing Janeane Garofalo (via Vulture). Shannon was advanced to repertory player that year after a cast shake-up, and soon, along with players Ana Gasteyer, Cheri Oteri, and Rachel Dratch, ushered in a new era of female-driven laughs on the show. From her original creations like Catholic schoolgirl Mary Katherine Gallagher, kickin' and stretchin' 50-year-old Sally O'Mally, and "The Delicious Dish" co-host Terry Rialto to her celebrity impressions like Courtney Love and Liza Minnelli, Shannon's performance versatility made her one of the show's breakout players.

Shannon continued to work outside of "SNL" while on the show, acting in a number of films during her tenure including the "SNL" spin-offs "A Night at the Roxbury" and "Superstar" and smaller independent movies like 1998's "Happiness" and "Red Hot American Summer." When she left "SNL" in 2001, Shannon's career didn't miss a step. She made a number of notable guest appearances on shows like "30 Rock," "Will & Grace," and "The White Lotus." She has also cultivated a strong career as a cinematic supporting player, winning an Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Female for 2016's "Other People." In 2022, Shannon released the book "Hello Molly!: A Memoir" and appeared in a number of projects, including voicing Wanda Werewolf in "Hotel Transylvania: Transformania" and co-starring in the Showtime series "I Love That for You" with fellow "SNL" alum Vanessa Bayer.

Morwenna Banks

British comedian Morwenna Banks appeared on "Saturday Night Live" for only four episodes in 1995, giving her the honor of having the briefest tenure of any repertory player in the show's history (via Vulture). Before "SNL," Banks appeared on the UK sketch comedy series "Absolutely" from 1989 to 1993 with much success. When she joined "SNL" in 1995, Banks was a late-season addition to the cast, appearing in episodes in April and May of that year. Banks mostly took on supporting roles and dropped by the "Weekend Update" desk a few times, but she never had the opportunity to star in her own sketches. At the end of the season, Banks was not asked back to "SNL" for Season 21.

Never mind that "SNL" didn't work out for Banks, because she went on to a successful performing career, mostly across the pond. After scoring a recurring role in the HBO series "Dream On" and a guest role on the sitcom "Sabrina the Teenage Witch" in the '90s, Banks returned to the UK, where she's become a fixture of British entertainment. Her notable television credits include roles on the original UK versions of "Shameless" and "Skins." She wrote the adaptation of her original BBC Radio 4 play "Goodbye" into the 2015 film "Miss You Already." Banks is also a prolific voice-over artist, most famously voicing Mommy Pig on the children's television series "Peppa Pig." Banks' upcoming project is writing, producing, and performing in "Funny Woman," the TV adaptation of Nick Hornby's novel "Funny Girl."

Nancy Walls

Nancy Walls, also known as Nancy Carell, was a repertory player on Season 21 of "Saturday Night Live," where she stayed for just one season. Getting her start in comedy as a member of the Boston College improv troupe "My Mother's Fleabag" and The Second City, Walls was cast on "SNL" in 1995. Walls is perhaps best known for her impression of CNN anchor Bobbie Battista, but she also played a number of original characters like Tina of the children's motivational musical troupe "The Rocky Roads" and aggressive church volunteer Gail Lafferty. While she appeared in various sketches, Walls didn't quite hit her stride on "SNL" and left the show in 1996.

After "SNL," Walls became a correspondent for "The Daily Show" in 1999, appearing on the satirical newscast alongside her husband Steve Carell. Walls left "The Daily Show" in 2002, but she still maintained a close working relationship with Carell. Walls acted in the Carell-starring films "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" and "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World," and his hit sitcom "The Office," where she played the recurring role of Carol Stills. Walls and Carell also co-created and executive produced the TBS comedy series "Angie Tribeca," with Walls also taking on acting and writing duties. Outside of her work with Carell, Walls voiced Helen Goode in the animated series "The Goode Family" and had small roles in films like "Anger Management" and "Bridesmaids."

Nora Dunn

Nora Dunn was a staple of "Saturday Night Live" in the second half of the 1980s and stayed on the show until 1990, when she made a seemingly controversial decision regarding a problematic guest host. Dunn joined the "SNL" cast in 1985, when executive producer Lorne Michaels returned to the series after leaving the show in 1980. Dunn made a splash on "SNL" playing characters like Liz Sweeney, one half the singing sister act "The Sweeney Sisters"; French prostitute Babette; and talk show host Pat Stevens. Her celebrity impressions lampooned a diverse array of late-'80s notables, with ladies like Barbara Bush and Brigitte Nielsen receiving Dunn's comedic flair. Dunn, along with scheduled musical guest Sinead O'Connor, boycotted host Andrew Dice Clay's May 12, 1990, appearance on the show, objecting to Dice Clay's controversial comedic persona. She left the show at the end of the season.

Dunn was out at "SNL," but she made her presence known elsewhere on '90s television, including the NBC drama "Sisters," the CBS sitcom "The Nanny," and the "The X-Files" on FOX. Her other television credits through the decades have spanned various genres. Dunn has performed with ease in everything from hot comedies like "Entourage," "New Girl," and "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" to action dramas such as "CSI: Miami" and "Chicago P.D." Dunn has also been acting in movies for decades, but these days, Dunn's resume has stayed close to the small screen with roles in "The Big Leap," "Home Economics," and "Chicago Med."

Norm Macdonald

Late comedian Norm Macdonald graced "Saturday Night Live" with his deadpan comedic stylings from 1993–1998, straddling several '90s incarnations of the late-night series. A stand-up comedian and writer, Macdonald joined "SNL" as a featured player and writer in 1993 and advanced to repertory player in 1994. That same year, Macdonald took over "Weekend Update" anchor duties from Kevin Nealon, injecting the role with his acerbic wit and non sequitur punchlines. When not on "Weekend Update," Macdonald slyly impersonated celebrities like Bob Dole and "Celebrity Jeopardy" contestant Burt "Turd Ferguson" Reynolds. Not everyone appreciated Macdonald's satirical gibes; in 1998, Macdonald was reportedly fired from "Weekend Update" at the insistence of NBC executive Don Ohlmeyer for incessantly deriding Ohlmeyer's friend, O.J. Simpson.

Immediately after leaving "SNL," Macdonald got to work—"Dirty Work," that is, starring in the 1998 cult classic comedy about friends who start a revenge-for-hire business. He also made several attempts at sitcom stardom with the television shows "Norm" and "A Minute With Stan Hooper," but neither show lasted more than a couple of years. While working in film and TV, Macdonald remained a fixture on the comedy scene, performing stand-up and frequenting late-night show couches. With all his talk show appearances, Macdonald picked up a thing or two and began hosting his own interview shows, including the podcast "Norm Macdonald Live," and the Netflix series "Norm Macdonald Has a Show." Macdonald, who had kept his cancer diagnosis largely private, died in 2021 at the age of 61. In 2022, he received three posthumous Emmy nominations for his Netflix comedy special "Norm Macdonald: Nothing Special" (via People).

Phil Hartman

Phil Hartman became a "Saturday Night Live" MVP when he joined the show in 1986 for a legendary eight-season run. A graphic designer turned comedian, Hartman boarded "SNL" having already amassed a number of voice roles and a screenwriting credit for the 1985 movie "Pee-Wee's Big Adventure." Hartman's ability to be simultaneously silly and serious made him one of "SNL's" most gifted impressionists, spoofing everyone from presidents Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton to showbiz legends like Frank Sinatra. Not only could Hartman take on celebrities, but his original characters like Keyrock, Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer, and Eugene the Anal Retentive Chef also brought the laughs. As "SNL" creator and executive producer Lorne Michael recounted to People, Hartman was nicknamed "the Glue" during his tenure because "he kind of held the show together. He gave to everybody and demanded very little. He was very low-maintenance."

Hartman moseyed out of "SNL" in 1994, continuing his work as a voice artist and actor. He was a staple on the long-running animated series "The Simpsons," voicing characters like washed-up actor Troy McClure and inept attorney Lionel Hutz. He starred in the NBC comedy "NewsRadio" as arrogant radio news anchor Bill McNeal. Hartman also worked in movies, racking up supporting credits in broad comedies like "Sgt. Bilko," "Jingle All the Way," and "Small Soldiers." Sadly, Hartman's life ended tragically when he was murdered by his wife in 1998. Decades after his death, Hartman's talent is still fondly remembered by fans and former colleagues alike, a testament to his enduring comedic legacy.

Rachel Dratch

Rachel Dratch might have found fame on "Saturday Night Live" in the early '00s with perpetual party pooper Debbie Downer and Bostonian teen Denise McDenna, but she actually joined the cast during the '90s. Dratch started her "SNL" stint as a featured player in 1999, moving on to repertory player in 2001. Her performance versatility saw Dratch playing a broad variety of characters, including middle school boy Sheldon, elder Hollywood producer Abe Scheinwald, and adult student Ruth Weinstock. Dratch left "SNL" after six seasons in 2006, reportedly due to budget cuts (via Chicago Tribune).

After "SNL," Dratch was set to stay close to her Rockefeller Center roots when she was cast as Jenna DeCarlo in the pilot of the NBC sitcom "30 Rock," but the role was recast (and renamed) with Jane Krakowski. She might have lost out on the role of Jenna, but Dratch made a number of appearances on the celebrated comedy over the course of its run. Other post-"SNL" work for Dratch has included plenty of cartoon voice-over work and guest appearances on shows like "Inside Amy Schumer," "Broad City," and "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver." Recently, she's found success on the stage, earning a Tony nomination for her Broadway debut in "POTUS: Or, Behind Every Great Dumbass are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive."

Rob Schneider

Rob Schneider, a "Bad Boy" of "Saturday Night Live," helped usher the show into its bro-centric era. A stand-up comedian, Schneider started as a featured player and writer on "SNL" in 1989 before moving in front of the camera in 1990, finally becoming a repertory player in 1991. As a cast member, Schneider's breakout character was the "makin' copies" office dweller Richard "The Richmeister" Laymer, but he also made memorable appearances as Orgasm Guy and The Sensitive Naked Man.

Schneider left "SNL" in 1994, but he hasn't strayed far from his not-ready-for-prime-time roots. He's been a consistent presence in Adam Sandler's Happy Madison Productions films, starting with 1998's "The Waterboy" and most recently in 2022's Kevin James-starring "Home Team." Schneider also became a leading man in goofy comedies like "Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo," "The Animal," and "The Hot Chick," all produced by Happy Madison Productions. He's had some small-screen success, starring in a number of TV series, including "Rob" and "Real Rob," both loosely based on his own life. Schneider's daughter is none other than Grammy-nominated singer Elle King. These days, Schnieder keeps busy acting, podcasting, touring, and competing as a giant hamster on the reality competition series "The Masked Singer."

Robert Smigel

Robert Smigel spent most of his "Saturday Night Live" tenure behind the scenes as a writer. Penning sketches like William Shatner urging "Star Trek" superfans to "Get a life!" and the "Chippendales" sketch starring a gyrating Chris Farley, Smigel was already a prolific writer when he moved to feature player in the early '90s. He jumped in front of the camera to play Chicago sports enthusiast Carl Wollarski in the recurring sketch "Bill Swerski's Superfans." A Smigel creation, the "Superfans" sketches became a beloved staple of early-'90s "SNL," with the portly Mike Ditka stans bemoaning the sorry states of their beloved teams "Da Bears" and "Da Bulls" and professing their love of all manner of smoked meats. Smigel stepped back to writers' room duties only after the '92–'93 season, working on sketches like the animated "TV Funhouse," until he left in 2008.

Smigel remains a creative force, writing for and working with some of showbiz's brightest comedy stars. In the '90s, he served as the head writer for "Late Night With Conan O'Brien," a show that served as the launching pad for his bawdy character creation, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog. He also co-created the short-lived but influential "The Dana Carvey Show." When he's not writing family-friendly movies like installments of the "Hotel Transylvania" franchise, Smigel has been dipping into political satire with the Fox show "Let's Be Real." Ever dedicated to his craft, Smigel, along with members of "The Late Show With Stephen Colbert," made headlines in 2022 when they were arrested at the U.S. Capitol while filming a show segment starring Triumph the Insult Comic Dog (via New York Times).

Sarah Silverman

Sarah Silverman has been a comedic force for decades, but her time on "Saturday Night Live" was notoriously brief. Cast as a featured player and writer in 1993, Silverman showed up as a "Weekend Update" correspondent and in small supporting roles in sketches like the classic "Total Bastard Airlines." Unfortunately for Silverman, "SNL" said "buh-bye" to the upcoming comedy star after only one season. Regarding her firing, Silverman said while she was surprised by the move, she wasn't putting out funny material for the show, which might have had something to do with her departure.

Her career quickly rebounded after the "SNL" dismissal, with Silverman moving on to other classic '90s comedy shows like "Mr. Show With Bob and David" and "The Larry Sanders Show." After a series of supporting movie roles and TV guest-stints, Silverman really hit her stride with the 2005 stand-up comedy film "Sarah Silverman: Jesus Is Magic" and in 2007 with the Comedy Central series "The Sarah Silverman Program." Her satirical brand of mature and abrasive humor has faced controversy over the years, but she's also worked for the kiddie set, including providing the voice of video game racer Vanellope in Disney's "Wreck-It Ralph" film series. These days, Silverman hosts "The Sarah Silverman Podcast" and, as of 2022, has a number of upcoming projects including hosting duties on "Stupid Pet Tricks," acting in the Leonard Bernstein biopic "Maestro," and her own Broadway musical, "The Bedwetter."

Siobhan Fallon Hogan

Character actress Siobhan Fallon Hogan spent a single season on "Saturday Night Live" as a featured player. Joining the cast in 1991, Fallon Hogan came to "SNL" with plenty of theater experience, even earning her MFA at The Catholic University (via Vulture). Outside of being one of the Delta Delta Delta sorority sisters alongside Melanie Hutsell and Beth Cahill, Hogan didn't get much "SNL" screen time, but it wasn't because she was untalented. According to Vulture, Fallon Hogan has admitted to turning down skits that conflicted with her Catholic beliefs. She left the show in 1992.

After "SNL," Fallon Hogan found plenty of acting work that aligned with her creativity and spiritual beliefs. In the '90s and early '00s, she acted in Hollywood hit movies "Forrest Gump," "Men in Black," and "Daddy Day Care," as well as art-house fare such as director Lars Von Trier's films "Dancer in the Dark," "Dogville," and "The House That Jack Built." On TV, Fallon Hogan has also been a series regular on the Nickelodeon kids' show "Fred: The Show" and the supernatural thriller "Wayword Pines," while also guest-starring on popular shows like "30 Rock," "Billions," and "What We Do in the Shadows." Still selective with her roles, Fallon Hogan's pickiness has become part of her persona; she once told Vulture that people's perception of her can be that "She's kind of odd. She doesn't take parts."

Tim Meadows

With his "Saturday Night Live" tenure spanning almost the entirety of the 1990s, Tim Meadows was a reliably funny presence on the late-night series. Joining "SNL" in 1991 along with Adam Sandler, Meadows moved up to repertory player in 1993. Meadows acted in and wrote plenty of sketches during the show's "Bad Boy" era, even receiving an Emmy nomination in 1993 for writing. He hit his stride when his original character, groovy sexpert Leon Phelps, otherwise known as "The Ladies Man," debuted in 1997. "The Ladies Man" proved so popular that a spin-off movie was released in 2000, the year Meadows exited "SNL." After 10 seasons of being a not-ready-for-prime-time player, Meadows simply wasn't happy at the show, sharing with Dennis Miller he had to move on.

And move on he did. He's acted in promising yet short-lived television shows like "The Michael Richards Show" and "Leap of Faith." He has also appeared in hits like "The Goldberg" and its spin-off series, "Schooled." In movies, Meadows has stayed close with "SNL" alums like Tina Fey, Will Ferrell, and Rob Schneider, taking on roles in the comedies "Mean Girls," "Semi-Pro," and "The Benchwarmers." He's also one of the many "SNL" '90s stars to be heavily featured in Adam Sandler-star vehicles films, with parts in "Jack and Jill," "Grown Ups," and "Hubie Halloween," among others. When not on the soundstage, Meadows continues to hone his skills by performing stand-up comedy around the country.

Tracy Morgan

Tracy Morgan found himself in the comedy world and on "Saturday Night Live" after making some big changes in his life. Seeking a better life for himself, Morgan went from dealing drugs to performing comedy, joining "SNL" in 1996. Morgan shared in an interview with Fresh Air that "'Saturday Night Live' was like a university for funny." During his years at "SNL-U," Morgan played characters like swinging Astronaut Jones, host of "Brian Fellow's Safari Planet"; Brian Fellow; and "Weekend Update" correspondent Dominican Lou. Morgan left, or rather "graduated," "SNL" in 2003 to star in his own sitcom, "The Tracy Morgan Show," but the show was canceled after one season due to low ratings (via Vulture).

After "SNL," Morgan's unique comedy stylings did not go unnoticed by his peers. Tina Fey created the role of Tracy Jordan on her sitcom "30 Rock" specifically for Morgan, for which he received an Emmy nomination in 2009. In 2014, Morgan was seriously injured in a car accident involving his limo and a Wal-Mart tractor-trailer, which killed comedy writer James McNair. The Washington Post reported that Morgan was near death, suffering from a traumatic brain injury. On the road to recovery, Morgan made his return to show business by hosting "SNL" in 2015. He addressed the crash in his 2017 Netflix special, "Tracy Morgan: Staying Alive." Since then, he's starred in the TBS series "The Last O.G," acted in movies like "What Men Want" and "Coming 2 America," and continues to perform his comedy on stage.

Victoria Jackson

Victoria Jackson tumbled her way (literally) through six seasons of "Saturday Night Live." Jackson auditioned for "SNL" with her routine of handstand poetry and songs. According to her recollections in the book "Live From New York," she leveraged an appearance on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson" to further impress Lorne Michaels. The trick worked and she joined the "SNL" cast in 1986. She continued her signature acrobatics, songs, and poetry readings on the "Weekend Update" correspondent desk (again, literally). Providing comic relief with "ditzy blonde" and "bimbo" tropes, Jackson was a steady presence on "SNL," even appearing in classic sketches like "Toonces the Driving Cat."

Jackson left "SNL" in 1992. Having already acted in a number of movies during her time on the show, including supporting roles in "Baby Boom," "Family Business," and the Weird Al Yankovic classic "UHF," Jackson was primed to advance to movie stardom. Her big-screen career didn't quite pick up post-"SNL," but Jackson had plenty of TV roles, guest-starring on shows like "The X-Files," and "Sabrina the Teenage Witch." She also landed a regular role on the Comedy Central sitcom "Strip Mall." Having relocated from Hollywood to Nashville, Jackson writes on her website that these days she "still appears in occasional films, does stand-up comedy, [and] sings her original ukulele songs around town." In recent years, Jackson has also become outspoken about her political beliefs, even running for a county commissioner seat in Tennessee in 2014 (via The Tennessean).

Will Ferrell

Will Ferrell, arguably one of "Saturday Night Live's" most successful alums, came to the show during its transitional mid-'90s years. With falling ratings and steep declines in cultural cache, "SNL" needed saving when Ferrell joined the cast in 1995. He, along with fellow newcomers like Molly Shannon, Cheri Oteri, and Jim Breuer, steered the show away from its formerly bro-tastic vibes into something sillier. Whether gyrating to the beat of Blue Öyster Cult in the "More Cowbell" sketch, pounding the keyboard as Marty Culp, or enthusiastically jumping up and down as Spartan Cheerleader Craig Buchanan, Ferrell's characters captured his endearing goofiness. His celebrity impressions were equally impressive, from Harry Caray to Alex Trebek to George W. Bush. 

Ferrell spent seven years on "SNL," leaving the show in 2002. The Chicago Tribune reported that he left because "​​[he] didn't want to become that guy who has graduated from high school but still hangs out in his van in the parking lot, picking up seniors." After leaving, Will Ferrell's entertainment career took off. Movies, television shows, Broadway, Internet content, podcasts: Ferrell has done them all and shows no signs of slowing down. According to a report at The Numbers, Ferrell's films have grossed over $2 billion at the global box office, where he's proven his versatility as both a comedic and dramatic actor. While Ferrell still takes on plenty of acting work, he's also become a prolific producer of both film and television with his Gloria Sanchez Productions.