Live from New York, it’s not Saturday Night Live. NBC announced on Tuesday (May 1) that the May 6 episode, which former cast member Pete Davidson was set to host, has been canceled due to the Writers Guild of America strike. Lil Uzi Vert was supposed to be the musical guest that night.
The network noted in its announcement that “SNL will air repeats until further notice.” The season finale was previously scheduled for May 20.
SNL cast members Michael Che and Colin Jost, who host the Weekend Update segment, as well as John Higgins, Martin Herlihy and Ben Marshall of the Do Not Destroy trio are also writers on the show.
The long-running late-night sketch comedy show is the latest program to announce that it is pausing in the wake of the writers’ strike. Late Show With Stephen Colbert, Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Late Night With Seth Meyers, The Daily Show and more earlier announced they would hit pause due to the walkout.
The WGA — who is negotiating with the Alliance of Motion Pictures and Television Producers — went on strike late Monday night after failing to come to a contract agreement at 11:59 p.m. ET Monday. Members had voted in March to walk out if an agreement was not made by the time the contract expired a minute before midnight.
“While company profits have remained high and spending on content has grown, writers are falling behind,” the WGA said in a statement shared with The Hollywood Reporter. “The companies have used the transition to streaming to cut writer pay and separate writing from production, worsening working conditions for series writers at all levels. On TV staffs, more writers are working at minimum regardless of experience, often for fewer weeks, or in mini-rooms, while showrunners are left without a writing staff to complete the season. And while series budgets have soared over the past decade, median writer-producer pay has fallen.”
By Tuesday afternoon, picketers were already taking up a whole block in New York City’s 5th Avenue between 37th and 38th streets. According to THR, hundreds were picketing, blocking the entrance to NBC’s Newfronts presentation for Peacock.