Saturday Night Live replaces Killam, Pharoah, and Rudnitsky with three new players

Following the announcement last month that Saturday Night Live would not renew the contracts for Taran Killam, Jay Pharoah, and the less-featured Jon Rudnitsky, the NBC sketch comedy show has added three new featured player cast members for the upcoming 42nd season, reports Variety.

The first is Mikey Day, who has been working as a writer for the show since season 39. Previously, he was co-head writer and cast member on the NBC sketch comedy show, Maya & Marty, which featured former SNL alums Martin Short and Maya Rudolph. Additionally, he has written and performed for Robot Chicken, Mad, and Kath and Kim; and is a cast member for the MTV improv comedy show Wild ‘N Out. You may also recognize Day from his role as Evan Ferguson in David Blaine Street Magic: YouTube Edition.

As a regular performer at iO Chicago and The Annoyance Theatre, Alex Moffat is the second to join the cast. He has worked on a number of independent projects, including the web series El Show with Alex Moffat. It’s safe to say that this gig could mark his breakout role.

This won’t be the first time the third addition to the cast has worked with Lorne Michaels: Melissa Villasenor also works with the SNL head’s Latino talent comedy studio Mas Mejor. She is known for her diverse selection of impressions of everyone from Maria Bamford to Bjork and a particularly fantastic Owen Wilson (check out the five-minute video above of some of her favorites), and also does stand-up comedy. In addition, she has voiced characters for Adventure Time, Family Guy, and TripTank.

The addition of these new cast members would create a nine-to-seven ratio of men to women on the cast, assuming there are no additional departures or additions announced prior to the season 42 opener.

Killam and Pharoah, meanwhile, both already have new projects in the works. In addition to directing the movie Why We’re Killing Gunther, which stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Killam is connected to a Showtime pilot for a comedy anthology show called Mating. Meanwhile, Pharoah will appear in Showtime comedy White Famous, which is executive produced by sketch comedy veteran turned A-list actor Jamie Foxx.

Saturday Night Live will return on Saturday, October 1 in its regular time slot at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBC.

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