Chris Redd Is The Latest Cast Member To Leave SNL Before Season 48

The cast overhauls of "Saturday Night Live" keep on coming. Earlier this year it was announced that longtime cast members Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant, Kyle Mooney, and Pete Davidson would not be returning for season 48, in addition to repertory players Alex Moffat, Melissa Villaseñor, and featured player Aristotle Athari, who exited the show after just one season. Unfortunately, this isn't the last exit before season 48, as Chris Redd announced today that he would be leaving the show after five seasons. That's eight of the 21 cast members, or nearly 40% of the on-screen talent.

"Being a part of 'SNL' has been the experience of a lifetime," Redd said in a statement about his departure (via TV Line). "Five years ago, I walked into 30 Rock knowing that this was an amazing opportunity for growth. Now, with friends who have become family and memories I will cherish forever, I'm grateful to Lorne Michaels and to the entire 'SNL' organization. From the bottom of my heart, I can't thank you all enough."

Fortunately, this is not the end for Redd, who has a comedy special called "Chris Redd: Why Am I Like This?" coming to HBO Max later this year, in addition to voicing a leading role in an untitled project from Broadway Video and Audible. Redd is also slated to star in the feature film "Cyber Monday," for Universal.

Come back, Redd!

Redd was known for his hilarious impression of New York Mayor Eric Adams, and was a frequent star of the pre-recorded sketches. Redd nabbed an Emmy Award for his assistance in writing the song "Come Back Barack," a song credited to a fictional '90s R&B group called De-Von-Tré (Chance the Rapper, Kenan Thompson, and Redd) wishing that Barack Obama would come back and be our president again.

Unfortunately, cast members aren't the only people leaving before season 48, as senior producer Lindsay Shookus also left the series after years of managing talent relations. Such a massive cast departure is worrisome for the future of "Saturday Night Live," especially as more and more legacy shows make the pivot to streaming services, but the show will be welcoming four new cast members to help fill the void.

"Saturday Night Live" is one of the longest-running shows in television history, and now broadcasts live across the United States at the same time, putting it in a primetime viewing spot for fans on the west coast. The series just won yet another Emmy for Outstanding Variety Sketch Series, with longest-tenured cast member Kenan Thompson hosting the ceremony. The future of "Saturday Night Live" may feel like it's up in the air, but perhaps this massive opportunity for growth and change can help usher in a new era of the series for a new generation of fans.

"Saturday Night Live" returns on October 1, 2022 with the new cast.