Shake-up at Saturday Night Live: Why did Michaela Watkins get the boot?
It’s a story tailor-made for one of Seth Meyers‘ ”Really!?!” segments: Saturday Night Live creator Lorne Michaels axed breakout performer Michaela Watkins because she’s too funny. Really!?! ”The only explanation I got from him — and he’s not known to say things just to make people feel better — was that he felt deep down that I should have my own show,” Watkins tells EW. ”He said it had nothing to do with talent.” How could it? In just one short year, Watkins gave birth to a slew of memorable characters and impersonations, most notably Today‘s long-suffering cohost Hoda Kotb and the fictional bitchpleeze.com blogger Angie Tempura. (Watkins’ less prolific costar Casey Wilson — who declined to comment for this story — was also let go. They will be replaced by up-and-comers Jenny Slate and Nasim Pedrad.) Even Watkins admits she’s confused by her ouster. ”I don’t think anyone knows what Lorne was thinking,” she says.”He’s looking at the whole mix of the show, and maybe he feels that what I bring would be better served on a sitcom…. SNL was a dream come true for me. It was a fantastic year. I don’t have any regrets.” She also harbors no ill will toward her ex-boss. ”I have a ton of respect for the man,” she says of Michaels (who also declined to comment). With SNL behind her, Watkins — who also had a recurring role on The New Adventures of Old Christine — will move back to L.A. and promptly heed Michaels’ advice to pursue her own show. ”I just want to make people laugh,” she says, ”and I want to do that the best way possible.”
— Michael Ausiello
Mad Men star to boss around Matt Damon on the big screen
Matt Damon, you may now call John Slattery The Boss. The two-time Emmy-nominated star of Mad Men has signed on to join Damon and Emily Blunt in Universal’s The Adjustment Bureau, a sci-fi drama currently shooting in New York City that’s loosely based on the 1954 short story ”Adjustment Team” by Philip K. Dick. (Scribe-turned-helmer George Nolfi of The Bourne Ultimatum is directing from his own script.) Slattery plays The Boss, a mysterious character whose behind-the-scenes power threatens the ambitions of Damon’s politician — as well as his romance with Blunt’s ballerina. Color us intrigued.
— Missy Schwartz