This weekend, Saturday Night Live launches its 41st season with an episode hosted by Miley Cyrus (she’ll also serve as the musical guest). The show is coming off a buzzed-about 40th season that included a massive anniversary show and a handful of ascendant performances from the likes of headline-grabbing performers like Kate McKinnon and Aidy Bryant.
Bryant is entering her fourth season as a member of the SNL ensemble, and fresh from a vacation in Japan (“I don’t really eat fish, so I mostly spent two weeks eating Japanese candy”), she called into EW to talk about what’s to come.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What’s that first week back at SNL like?
AIDY BRYANT: It’s really exciting. It kind of feels like when you go back to school, and everybody has their best outfit on. Who’s changed? Who’s got a new hair color? It has that feeling. It’s like seeing all your old friends again. We’re all really busy during the summer, so it’s a nice reunion, and there’s possibility in the air. SNL is always exciting, but that first week is doubly exciting.
Does it feel any different now that you’re one of the more experienced cast members?
I definitely know what I’m doing and I’m excited to get back in the swing of things. It feels weird to be a more senior cast member now, because I still feel like a baby.
Miley Cyrus is the host of the season premiere. What was it like the last time she hosted?
Miley blew me away that week. That was also the height of all that VMA stuff and it was a really intense time for her, and she was so cool, chill, professional, sweet, and friendly. She’s so talented it makes your mouth hurt from smiling. I don’t think the sketch even made it to dress rehearsal, but at one point she was singing a really dumb song about a grandma, and her voice is so beautiful that I was like, “Am I getting teary right now from this dumb grandmother sketch song?” She blew us all away at the 40th, too. I’m excited to have her back.
What was your experience like at the 40th anniversary special?
There was a moment at the end of the show when they invited all the cast members and alums onto the stage, and I was surrounded by the people I watched, and the people my parents had watched, and then my cast mates. Kate, Cecily [Strong] and I were full sobbing and holding each other. That was a moment to me that I’ll never forget. Just being in any part of that, it was the most overwhelming thing of my life. When they showed that clip package of the auditions and they showed a little portion of my audition, I was totally overwhelmed. I thought, “That person doesn’t even know what’s coming for her.” It was just the coolest. It took me like three days in bed to recover, and it wasn’t from drinking. It was from pure human joy and emotion. I was like a broken woman afterwards.
We know Miley, the Weeknd, and Demi Lovato will be musical guests this season. Who would you book on the SNL stage if you had the power?
You know who I’m loving and I think is so fun is Shamir. I love him. I always love when a musical guest adds energy to the show, and I just love his music and his energy.
What do you hope to bring back this year? Will we see the return of “Dyke and Fats”?
I loved doing “Dyke and Fats,” and if I had my choice, I would just film a “Dyke and Fats” every day of the week. But I don’t know, that was so special to me that in some ways I never want to touch it again. But in other ways I want to do it all the time. I love doing those all-girl music videos. They are such fun days to shoot, and it kind of does feel like you’re in the Spice Girls, which I guess is my own personal fantasy. To get to have those days with those girls is so fun. All day, we just keep looking at each other going, “We look insane! I can’t believe we’re doing this! This is the best day of our lives!”