Celebs Who've Been Banned From SNL


Adrien Brody

During his ill-fated hosting gig, Brody donned a dreadlock wig and a Jamaican dialect for nearly a minute before introducing the musical guest. Brody is now persona non grata — not just for his problematic antics, but because he improvised, which wasted time on the intricately planned live show.

Sinead O'Connor

After O’Connor’s a cappella take on Bob Marley's "War," she held up a picture of Pope John Paul II, ripped it up, and stated, "Fight the real enemy." The stunt was not well received by the fans, the NBC brass, nor Lorne Michaels, and O’Connor was subsequently banned.

Kanye West

“SNL” producers allowed Kanye a rare third performance in his 2018 appearance, but instead of performing a song, West delivered an off-the-cuff speech in praise of President Trump that decried the mainstream media. The rant earned him a ban which he still denies to this day.

Martin Lawrence

The comedian went rogue during his monologue and did a raunchy bit about feminine hygiene — or the lack thereof. After the west coast feed aired with edits, network executives banned Lawrence — not just from appearing on “SNL,” but from the entirety of NBC.

Cypress Hill

Cypress Hill proved they were “insane in the membrane” by smoking a joint during their performance on the live broadcast. DJ Muggs said “SNL” insiders told him they thought the antic was "so cool," but higher-ups didn't agree and instituted a lifetime ban.

The Replacements

The Replacements notoriously loved to get drunk before their shows, a ritual they honored during their appearance, taking the stage thoroughly hammered. The performance quickly devolved into a mess, laced with expletives and partial nudity, and earned them an immediate ban.

Frank Zappa

Unnerved by an unsuccessful final dress rehearsal, Zappa decided to show the audience the irony and artifice of scripted television, essentially mocking the show while hosting. His approach to the humor was not appreciated, and Lorne Michaels made sure he was never asked back.

Elvis Costello

During his second slot, Costello performed the song "Radio, Radio,” which is viciously critical of mass media. Even worse, Lorne Michaels had specifically asked him not to play it, so he was temporarily banned from the show.


Chaotic punk band Fear’s act included film footage of bleeding jack-o'-lanterns and violent slam-dancers who were so erratic that producers had to cut the live feed mid-performance. The band left with about $2,500 worth of damage in its wake and a permanent ban.

Andy Kaufman

Andy Kaufman was known for his loveable characters and for his anti-comedy bits, like wrestling women and appearing as obnoxious lounge singer Tony Clifton. In 1982, the show that made Kaufman famous ended up banning him, after the audience voted him out in a self-imposed telephone poll.

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