Leslie Jones Reflects on Her 'SNL' Experience: Embracing the Show's Dynamic.
In a recent NPR interview, Leslie Jones candidly discussed her time on "Saturday Night Live," acknowledging that the nature of the NBC sketch comedy series inevitably molded her into a more amplified version of herself. From 2014 to 2019, Jones served as both a writer and cast member on the show, earning acclaim with two Emmy nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series.
"Comedy has been my craft for so long, and I've come to understand my comedic identity," Jones expressed. "On 'SNL,' they take that essence and amplify it because that's the nature of the beast. So whatever I'm delivering that they find resonant, they amplify it to the nth degree."
"It became this sort of caricature of me, you know what I mean?" Jones reflected. "So it boiled down to either I'm showcasing affection for the white guys, or I'm engaging in some lively confrontation with them, or I'm just being outrageously boisterous. I knew this would be the outcome because I comprehend the influence of these portrayals."
Jones clarified that she harbors no ill feelings towards "SNL." She recounted a conversation with a former cast member who imparted that this transformative process is par for the course for anyone on the show.
"As I look back, it hits me, 'Ah, yes, just like Taran Killam!'" she remarked. "Taran aspired to explore a variety of roles, yet he found himself largely confined to these hyper-masculine characters and musical performances. It was an eye-opener for me. This is a mechanism."
Furthermore, Jones emphasized her deep respect and affection for the show's creator, Lorne Michaels.
"I always used to say, 'He's the puppet master.' He's got to balance the contentment of the cast, the writers, the Writers Guild of America, NBC, and even a family in Omaha, Nebraska, who's tuning in," she noted. "Imagine the multitude of threads he has to manage? It's a well-oiled machine that needs to function, you know?"
Since bidding farewell to "SNL," Jones has taken on hosting duties for "Supermarket Sweep" and graced the screens in notable productions like Prime Video's "Coming 2 America" and the comedic series "Our Flag Means Death" on Max. This month, she's been actively promoting her newly released memoir, "Leslie F*cking Jones," now available for purchase.