The Emmys might have been a de facto “Saturday Night Live” episode nobody asked for, but we still have a few days before the late-night sketch series returns for its upcoming 44th season.
And when it does, there will be a new face in the studio with comedian Ego Nwodim joining the ranks as a featured player, NBC announced on Friday.
Four new writers, Alan Linic, Alison Gates, Eli Mandel and Bowen Yang, have also been brought on board.
The news arrives days after Mikey Day, Melissa Villaseñor and Alex Moffat were promoted to repertory players ahead of the premiere, which will be hosted by actor Adam Driver and feature Kayne West as a musical guest.
The SNL cast is organized by a two-tier system with new hires classified as featured players, who, if all goes well, eventually become repertory players.
A graduate from University of Southern California majoring in biology, Nwodim has made a name for herself at Los Angeles’ UCB Theatre ― a popular recruiting ground for the series ― with her one-woman show “Great Black Women … and Then There’s Me” in 2017.
She’s also made guest appearances on series like “K.C. Undercover,” “Living Biblically,” “Law & Order: True Crime,” “2 Broke Girls” and “Adam Ruins Everything.”
SNL has cast only a handful of black women in its nearly 45-year history, including Yvonne Hudson, Danitra Vance, Ellen Cleghorne, Maya Rudolph, Sasheer Zamata and current cast member Leslie Jones.