News Worms
News Worms


Jay Pharoah blasts 'SNL' after being fired

Jay Pharoah blasts 'SNL' after being fired

When Jay Pharoah and Taran Killam suddenly departed from Saturday Night Live previous year, everybody involved stayed pretty quiet about the reasons behind the change.

Not long after his exit, Pharoah booked Jamie Foxx's half-hour comedy series "White Famous" at Showtime.

"You go where you're appreciated", he told hosts on Hot 97. And if you have multiple people on the cast saying things like, 'You're so talented and you're so able.

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He said he refused to do some of the skits he was asked to do, including wearing a dress: "They put people into boxes". Speaking with Hot 97's Ebro In The Morning, the comedian shared his feelings of being underutilized during his SNL run.

Pharoah said that SNL never bothered to take advantage of his range of skills as a comedian and a performer, instead relegating him exclusively to a handful of impressions of black celebrities.

"It ain't no beef with Lorne", he said. And I'm fiery too... "I kind of feel like they gave up... it was just a whatever attitude". And if you watched "SNL" while Pharoah was on the show, you probably noticed he was the go-to for impersonating everyone from Jay Z to Ben Carson to Barack Obama. Eventually, Sasheer Zamata was hired as just the fifth black woman to star on the show in 2014, and writer and occasional "Weekend Update" guest Leslie Jones was promoted to a cast member later that same year.

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He said he was also a central figure agitating for the hiring of more black women for SNL's staff - and that "they were ready to get rid of me" at that point in 2013. Pharaoh also claimed that he almost lost his job back in 2013 after pushing the show to diversify and get more black people on as cast members and other talent.

Regardless, he "respects the hell" out of Lorne Michaels. "I'm like, 'Wow, I feel you, my n--'".

"We're on good graces and everything", said the actor, though he admitted that there had been shaky times between him and Michaels.

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