Between a lapsing contract, Internet rumors and a fairly clear statement in the most recent digital short, the writing on the wall said that Andy Samberg would be leaving Saturday Night Live, the show that many would say he helped to revitalize. Now, following the emotional farewell to fellow cast member to Kristen Wiig, Samberg has confirmed what most everyone already knew.
“It’s an incredibly emotional and strange moment in my life,” Samberg told The New York Times. “Obviously it’s not a huge shock, but I did officially decide not to come back.”
Samberg first garnered attention as a member of the three-man comedy team known as The Lonely Island, which includes Jorma Taccone and Akiva Schaffer. All three made the move to SNL in 2005 and came up with the now-classic “Lazy Sunday” digital short, which just about blew up the Internet. Since then, they’ve continued to write, direct and appear in sketches as well as more digital shorts. Samberg hinted at his leaving the show during the season finale “Lazy Sunday 2” in a back and forth with Chris Parnell: Samberg: “On these New York streets, I hone my fake rap penmanship.” Parnell: “That’s how it began.” Samberg: “And that’s how I’ma finish it.”
Samberg will next be seen in next week’s That’s My Boy with Adam Sandler and then heard as the voice of Johnathon in Hotel Transylvania. He also said he hopes eventually he’ll be asked to come back to SNL … as a host. “Well, hopefully things will work out well enough that they’ll want me.”