As we reported yesterday, Saturday Night Live addressed longstanding, but increasingly louder criticisms of its lack of racial diversity by holding a “secret” audition for black female cast members. It was a solution that sought to closed that gap as elegantly as the show fills five minutes with another “Fired Employees” sketch—and every bit as thoughtfully—but according to New York Times reporter Bill Carter, what do you know, it worked. Carter says SNL will hold “final” auditions for those ladies Monday night on the Studio 8H stage, while adding that Lorne Michaels tells him “he will add [a] black female cast member to SNL in January”—suggesting Michaels obviously expects those auditions to go pretty well, so please be quiet now.
Interestingly, the report arrives just as TMZ spoke to comedian Tiffany Haddish, one of the women who was at that “secret” L.A. audition two weeks ago, who says she felt as though the show already had someone in mind. “They already know who they want … they're just wasting all these black women's time and gas money,” Haddish says, further suggesting the entire thing was just a publicity stunt—a token exercise thrown together solely to quiet critics.
But hey, can it really be considered tokenism when it obviously produced a worthy contender, who attended an audition created last-minute, at the apex of those criticisms, that was specifically set aside for black females, and whose addition to the cast is apparently a given regardless of how their final audition stacks up against regular auditions? What if it’s all just a coincidence, and SNL just happened to find the black female cast member it’s been searching for all these years, in the place where it went to unusual lengths to find her, just when it needed her most? Have we really lost our faith in sweet, sweet serendipity? [via Defamer]