Vanessa Bayer is leaving Saturday Night Live. Ever since 1975, many of the most successful and famous comedians and actors in the world have started or jump-started their careers on Saturday Night Live. The sketch comedy show has spent more than 40 years making audiences laugh, and many of the past cast members have gone on to have their own television shows, headline in stand-up comedy, star in movies and on Broadway, write TV series and films, and host late night talk shows.
While SNL stays on the air year after year, the cast is in constant rotation. Sooner or later, the actors performing on the show move on. Recently it was announced that Bobby Moynihan is leaving after nine seasons to star in upcoming CBS sitcome Me, Myself and I – as well as voiceover roles in both DuckTales and Happy. And it looks like he is not the only long time cast member moving onto other projects.
According to Deadline, Vanessa Bayer is leaving after the current season. Bayer is currently the longest running female cast member, with seven seasons under her belt. Bayer confirmed this herself on Instagram, with a little help from Weekend Update host Colin Jost:
Like most cast members of Saturday Night Live, Bayer is known for a few celebrity impersonations. In her case, Miley Cyrus and Jennifer Aniston – or more specifically Aniston’s Friends character Rachel. She also has several popular original characters, including lover of Japanese culture Rebecca Stern-Markowicz, Jacob the Bar-Mitzvah Boy – who is a correspondent on some of the the Weekend Update segments – and child actress Laura Parsons.
Aside from SNL Bayer has been making her comedic presence known in a series of roles both on film and television. She voiced the Flight Attendant in Despicable Me 2, appeared in the movie Trainwreck as best friend Nikki, and as a part of the ensemble cast of Office Christmas Party. This year she was in The Polka King – which premiered at Sundance in January. She’s guest starred on a number of TV shows as well, including Modern Family, The Simpsons, The Mindy Project and Portlandia. She and her brother Jonah collaborate on the web series Sound Advice.
The current season of Saturday Night Live has seen the show’s highest ratings in 23 years, and is ending tonight in a finale hosted by Dwayne Johnson with musical guest Katy Perry. Hopefully the loss of Bayer – and Moynihan – will not interfere with the show’s current upswing.