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‘Saturday Night Live’ announces season 47 cast; Beck Bennett out

Beck Bennett Saturday Night Live
Beck Bennett as Vin Diesel in a sketch from 'SNL' season 46. (Image credit: Will Heath/NBC)

After the finale to Saturday Night Live’s 46th season generated speculation over the future of many SNL cast members, including Aidy Bryant, Kate McKinnon, Cecily Strong and Kenan Thompson, it’s been a long wait to know what things will look like for the variety show as it heads into season 47. The wait is over, and it includes a bit of a surprise.

The Hollywood Reporter, along with other outlets, broke the news that much of the SNL cast from season 46 would remain intact for this upcoming season; in fact the only exiting repertory player is Beck Bennett.

Bennett had been with SNL for eight seasons. He is probably best known for his impersonations of politicians Sen. Mitch McConnell and former Vice President Mike Pence, but he was also great in a number of pre-filmed sketches that often proved among the best of a given episode, including last season’s “December to Remember car commercial” and a Mare of Easttown parody where he plays the father of a “murdur durdur!”. 

Bennet shared an Instagram post after the announcement where he said “Love you, SNL. Gonna miss you so much. Thank you for 8 years of remarkable people and incredible experiences that completely changed my life. I had so much fun.”

There was one other exit from SNL ahead of season 47, as Lauren Holt will not be returning as a featured player.

Other cast news included Chloe Fineman and Bowen Yang being upped to repertory players for season 47, while three new additions to the cast were announced: Aristotle Athari, James Austin Johnson and Sarah Sherman.

Here is the full list of cast members for SNL season 47:

  • Aristotle Athari (featured player)
  • Aidy Bryant (repertory player) 
  • Michael Che (repertory player) 
  • Pete Davidson (repertory player) 
  • Mikey Day (repertory player) 
  • Andrew Dismukes (featured player) 
  • Chole Fineman (repertory player) 
  • Heidi Gardner (repertory player) 
  • James Austin Johnson (featured player)
  • Punkie Johnson (featured player) 
  • Colin Jost (repertory player) 
  • Kate McKinnon (repertory player) 
  • Alex Moffat (repertory player) 
  • Kyle Mooney (repertory player) 
  • Ego Nwodim (repertory player) 
  • Chris Redd (repertory player) 
  • Sarah Sherman (featured player)
  • Cecily Strong (repertory player) 
  • Kenan Thompson (repertory player)
  • Melissa Villaseñor (repertory player) 
  • Bowen Yang (repertory player) 

Season 47 of Saturday Night Live will debut on Oct. 2, with Owen Wilson hosting and Kacey Musgraves as the musical guest. 

Michael Balderston

Michael Balderston is a D.C.-based entertainment writer and content producer for What to Watch. He previously has written for TV Technology and Awards Circuit.