Stand-up comedian Jon Rudnitsky will be the latest featured player to join the cast of Saturday Night Live when the iconic variety show returns to NBC for its 41st season.
The 25 year-old Rudnitsky, a native of New Jersey, was the winner of the Laugh Bowl in 2012–The Laugh Factory’s annual competition pitting the best comedians from collegiate rivals USC and UCLA against each other. Rudnitsky, a USC alum, went on to give the commencement speech for his alma mater’s School of Theatre and Communication.
Rudnitsky’s digital shorts parodying House of Cards and True Detective, which garnered the ambitious comedian over one million hits on YouTube, proved he could deliver solid impressions while also showing off his skills as a writer.
In recent years, the venerable late night sketch show had been fairly consistent in its hiring of performers with improv backgrounds, plucking much of its talent from training grounds like UCB, The Second City, The Groundlings and iO. But with last year’s addition of young comics Pete Davidson and Michael Che, Rudnitsky’s hiring could signal a trend in how SNL will restructure its cast going forward.
Saturday Night Live will return on October 3rd with host Miley Cyrus. Amy Schumer is set to host on October 10th, with Tracy Morgan scheduled to make his triumphant return to 30 Rockefeller Plaza on October 17th — his first appearance on the show since his nearly fatal car accident in June of last year.
Josh Lyons | Staff Writer