Jason Sudeikis, who is starring in a movie called Tumbledown with Rebecca Hall soon, gave an interview with Salon this week about the film, and how Saturday Night Live not only prepared him for the role, but — based on the glowing ways in which he talks about SNL — how it prepared him for life. He spoke about how lucky he was to have a guy like Lorne Michaels, who took “knucklehead college dropouts” like Sudeikis, and helped them go from script to screen in six days and to perform in front of millions of people.
He was clearly fond of his time there, and looking back on his cast — just two to three seasons removed — that’s understandable. In retrospect, Sudeikis’ cast seems like one that will be remembered for decades, if only because it’s a cast that’s launched so many film and television stars who will be around for decades: Seth Meyers, Fred Armisen, Kristen Wiig, and Bill Hader represent some of the most talented cast members in 40 years of SNL, and they worked so well together on the show, it’s no wonder they continue to collaborate in feature films (Sudeikis will re-team with Wiig in this summer’s Masterminds, and Hader has already starred alongside Wiig in the fabulous The Skeleton Twins). I can see Hader, Wiig, and Sudeikis teaming up for years to come, and using Seth Meyers to promote their projects. It’ll be a neverending reunion.
Sudeikis obviously reveres his SNL cast:
I came up with tremendous generations of on-screen talent that were remarkable behind the scenes. Kristen Wiig always knew what a character looked like. If you saw a silhouette, you’d know what character it is. I don’t think that way. That’s the way her incredible, beautiful mind works. Bill [Hader] would start with a voice. Fred [Armisen] would start with a quirk. And I got to watch these elements manifest in 10 pages over the course of 10 years. I think this gave me the option to run at a really, really fast speed with people I was always trying to keep up with or catch, or run alongside. (Via)
With a cast like that, it’s probably also hard to let go, even now, two years after he left. He admitted himself in the interview with Salon that he doesn’t have closure:
For me, I don’t think the things that define me I ever want to close off. Especially as an artist. I want to access the things that broke my heart and it may hurt to see again or feel again, but gosh darn it, I’d rather have that than feel numb and checked out. I clearly don’t have closure with my experience with SNL, I don’t know … from a distance, everything gets prettier, like a Monet.
The thing is, we didn’t really get any closure with Sudeikis leaving, either. It seemed like the decision was up in the air every summer, so we never knew if he was really leaving at the end of a season because he didn’t know. So, he didn’t get the big send offs that Hader, Wiig, Armisen, and Meyers got.
There’s still an episode or two left in May without an announced guest host, and SNL often ends the year with a former cast member. With Tumbledown coming out soon, and Masterminds with Wiig opening this summer, I’d love to see Sudeikis return and give us one more “What’s Up with That?” with Kenan Thompson before Thompson presumably leaves (because he’s gotta leave at some point, right?).