If you haven’t heard yet, Louis C.K. has been announced as the host of “Saturday Night Live” for November 3rd. I actually think this is a terrible idea on Louis C.K.’s part. He’s the best comedian working today, is incredibly well respected, and considered one of the funniest people in showbusiness. Why would somebody like Louis need or even want to host “SNL”? There’s very little upside, as the show is seriously unlikely to live up to the talents of Louis. The show works best for hosts who want to change the public’s perception of them: Dramatic actors doing comedy (Jon Hamm, Christopher Walken) or actors who want to show another side of themselves (Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Justin Timberlake). More often than not, stand-up comedians do not perform well in sketch comedy (Zach Galifianakis, Dane Cook), and comedy actors rarely live up to the expectations we have for them (in 37 years, obviously, there are many exceptions — Jim Carrey’s first hosting stint, Tom Hanks’ early hosting gigs, etc., but more often than not, they fall flat).
It’s kind of special for Louis C.K. however, because he auditioned for the show back in 1993, but was turned down (he would later co-wrote “TV Funhouse” with Robert Smigel). Louis C.K., of course, is not the only notable celebrity that has auditioned for, but turned down or was rejected from the cast. Here are 12 other celebrities who auditioned but, for whatever reason, did not end up on the show as a cast member.
Donald Glover (2007-2008) (Considered for the role of Obama)
Mindy Kaling (2006-2007) (Offered staff writer role, but wasn’t allowed due to commitment to “The Office”)
Lisa Kudrow (1990-91) (Lost to Julia Sweeney)
Steve Carell (1995-96) (Lost to Will Ferrell)
Geena Davis (1984-85) (Lost to Pamela Stephenson)
Paul Reubens (1984-85) (Lost to Billy Crystal)
Catherine O’Hara (1980-81) (Quit before the season started)
John Goodman (1980-81) (Lost to Joe Piscopo)
Jim Carrey (1980-81) (Lost to Charlie Rocket)
Rob Heubel (1994-95) (Lost to Rob Riggle)
Jennifer Aniston (1999-2000) (Turned down the offer to do “Friends”)
Dane Cook (2002-03) (Lost to Will Forte)