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Tag: Bill Hader (1-10 of 12)

Bill Hader never watched his 'SNL' sketches: 10 things we learned from his 'Daily Beast' Q&A

When we learned of Bill Hader’s departure from Saturday Night Live last May, we mourned the loss of Hader classics like Herb Welch, James Carville and of course, a little New York club-hopping aficionado named Stefon. And we’ll only continue to mourn his exit as SNL comes back on air.

But in the meantime, we can accompany Hader on his trip down memory lane in his latest Q&A with The Daily Beast. In it, the SNL veteran shares some of his favorite moments from his eight years on the show, from meeting Kanye West after his first show to rehearsing late into the night on Fridays. Here are our top 10 revelations from the interview: READ FULL STORY

'Clear History': HBO movie's 'Curb'-iest moments

Watching an HBO one-off starring Larry David and Jon Hamm was such a no-brainer for me that I think I expected to like it too much. Clear History — which first aired Saturday night and is available now on HBO Go — works better as an extended all-star episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm than as a full-length feature.

But would any Curb fan turn down a feature-length episode? Hell to the no! The film’s complicated backstory and confusing arc (are we really to believe the cantankerous Rolly –  basically Larry David playing himself — is considered the nicest guy on Martha’s Vineyard?) can be overlooked if you decide to just sit back and enjoy the performances from David, Hamm, and co-stars Kate Hudson, Amy Ryan, Danny McBride, Eva Mendes, Bill Hader, Michael Keaton, J.B. Smoove, Philip Baker Hall, and an uncredited Liev Schreiber. (Maybe he thought Ray Donovan would put a hit out on him if he figured out he’d jumped from Showtime to HBO to play a long-haired Chechnyan criminal?)

Below, Clear History‘s Curb-iest moments:

Justin Bieber's failed 'Saturday Night Live' sketch is everything -- VIDEO

A roster of famous funnymen and the world’s most famous teen should yield a good show, right? Well, in comedy, sometimes logic fails. Miserably.

Take, for instance, the unaired Justin Bieber Saturday Night Live skit “Song for Daddy” (with added commentary from Bill Hader and SNL writers). The sketch goes so poorly that a moody Bieber is the least of its failures.

The plot is simple: A country-techno band (think Creedence Clearwater Revival-meets-Kool & the Gang) is the musical act on The Steve Harvey Show. Hader is the lead singer, Fred Armisen plays drums, Bobby Moynihan plays a Dr. Seuss instrument — well, you’ll see! Almost line by line, as Hader’s character tells tales of his father, the skit falls flat. Check it out below:

'Saturday Night Live': Your guide to the guests at Stefon's cameo-stuffed wedding

This past Saturday, New York’s hottest club was clearly Some Church in Midtown — where frequent Weekend Update guest Stefon was set to wed Anderson Cooper (or wait, was that Tranderson Cooper?) before the ceremony was crashed by a love-struck Seth Meyers.

As you watched Seth and Stefon fight their way out of the church, you may have noticed a few quasi-familiar faces. That’s because every guest on Stefon’s side of the aisle — as well as the minister — was a person or creature mentioned during one of the club kid’s 15 previous Weekend Update visits. Here’s a detailed breakdown of who was there, cameo by cameo: READ FULL STORY

'Saturday Night Live' finale recap: Ben Affleck shines, but Stefon and Fred Armisen steal the show

Last year, Kristen Wiig’s emotional SNL sendoff set a high water mark for cast member farewells. (Compare it to, say, the way Chris Kattan said goodbye with a “terrible re-enactment” of his SNL career during his last show 10 years ago.)

I’d say that mark was met — and possibly exceeded — by the closing sketch of tonight’s show, in which Fred Armisen (as punk rocker Ian Rubbish, first introduced when Vince Vaughn hosted a few weeks ago) sang a sweet original tune filled with simple, evocative lyrics like, “It’s been all right, I’ve had a lovely night.” He was joined onstage by bandmates Derek Gash (Bill Hader, who’s also leaving the show) and Keith Grimshaw (Taran Killam, who’d better not be going anywhere).

While Wiig’s goodbye paid tribute to her as a singular, standout personality, Armisen and Hader’s was more understated. But because Armisen is a chameleon, it’s only fitting that he bid farewell in character — and it was equally fitting to see Hader, the show’s strongest supporting presence (when he’s not playing Stefon), say goodbye while backing up one of his castmates.


Ben Affleck hosts tonight's 'Saturday Night Live' finale: Talk about it here!

There are so many talking points for SNL‘s 38th season finale that I hardly know where to begin! Maybe it’ll help to organize them as a list:

1. Tonight marks Ben Affleck’s fifth time hosting Saturday Night Live, which grants him membership to SNL‘s storied Five-Timers Club. Usually, a moment like this would occasion a big, cameo-stuffed sketch featuring veteran hosts like Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin. But SNL just gave us a cameo-stuffed Five Timer’s Club sketch when Justin Timberlake hosted in March — and it’s way too soon to repeat that same conceit. So how will the show acknowledge Affleck’s milestone? Maybe Timberlake will show up to induct him?

2. As you may already know, Stefon’s very first SNL appearance wasn’t a Weekend Update visit. It was this little-remembered sketch from the last time Affleck hosted the show in 2008, which casts Bill Hader and the host as brothers pitching a movie together. (According to the clip, Stefon’s last name is Zolesky — who knew?) This has to mean that Stefon and Affleck’s David are going to appear together again tonight, right?


'Saturday Night Live': A full directory of Stefon's favorite clubs. (This post has EVERYTHING.)

[Update: Find Stefon's very last club -- sob! -- at the end of the post.]

Here’s what we know about tweaky club kid Stefon Zelesky, by far Bill Hader’s most popular SNL character: He used to write for Smash. His dad is David Bowie. His brother is Ben Affleck (a.k.a. “David”). He lives in a trash can near the Radio Shack on 23rd St. and 7th Ave. He’s in love with Seth Meyers. And he’s got an encyclopedic knowledge of New York’s hottest clubs, from Scampi (“illegally parked behind the Statue of Liberty”) to SPICY (“the creation of club owner/rabbi Jew Diamond Phillips”) to Selfieee! (“based on the novel Push by Sapphire”).

But just like Booooooooof’s round-the-clock puke party, all good things must come to an end. And since this Saturday marks Hader’s last show as an SNL cast member, it may also be the last time we see Stefon horrify and amuse Seth — and himself — by rattling off facts about his favorite city hot spots.

So before he goes, let’s celebrate Stefon’s legacy by remembering all 31 of the crazy, improbable, disgusting, hilarious clubs he’s described over the past four seasons. And don’t worry — if the list makes you feel a bit misty, just reach down and grab yourself a human tissue. (It’s that thing of where a jacked midget wears a white shirt, and you blow your nose on it.)


'Saturday Night Live': This week's Ben Affleck-hosted finale will be 'Argo'-rific -- VIDEO

Hey — you still like Argo jokes, right? Because if these promos are any indication, they’ll make up about 80 percent of the material on this week’s Saturday Night Live — or at least host Ben Affleck’s monologue.

Honestly, though, I’m totally fine with that — so long as the bulk of them are delivered by departing cast member/national treasure Bill Hader, who gets a rare co-starring role in Affleck’s promos. Think the Oscar-winner resents that he’s essentially billed second for Saturday’s show?


Which of Bill Hader's 'Saturday Night Live' characters will you miss most? POLL

First comes denial: “Wait, what? Bill Hader can’t leave SNL — he’s in, like, every sketch! There must be a mistake.” Next is anger: “This is crap. How could you do this to us, Hader? How could you deprive us of Stefon, and James Carville, and a screen presence that single-handedly elevates every dumb game show parody? We’ll never forgive you. Never.”

That’s followed, of course, by bargaining: “Listen — if you stay, we’ll stop complaining that the show hasn’t been funny since [insert year here]. We’ll laugh at all the musical monologues, and sympathize when you’re forced to fill a hole with a commercial parody rerun. We’ll even stop harping about how lame The Californians is. Just… just please don’t go.”

And then comes depression… the stage in which many of us find ourselves now.

We may never truly accept the fact that Hader is exiting SNL after eight rubber-faced, wonderfully goofy years. Perhaps, though, the road to acceptance is paved with Hulu videos — and if nothing else, we’ll take any excuse to watch and rewatch Hader’s greatest Saturday Night Live creations. Which of them will you miss most when the comedian takes his final bow this Saturday? Click through our unscientifically compiled list of his 10 best recurring characters — both impressions and originals, all of which have appeared at least three times on the show — and vote for your favorite at the end of the post.


Zach Galifianakis stars in fake '70s cop show in cut dress rehearsal 'Saturday Night Live' sketch -- VIDEO

Who can say why certain Saturday Night Live sketches don’t make the final live cut?

Zach Galifianakis’s show this past week had plenty of oddball material, so maybe that’s the reason Kanish, starring Galifianakis and Bill Hader-as-Judd-Hirsch in a fake ’70s crime show dragged down by technical errors, didn’t air. Happily, the dress rehearsal version of the sketch was posted online, so fans can watch Hader and Galifianakis give the sketch their cheesy crime show best — if only their punchlines didn’t keep getting cut off and the freeze frames weren’t so awkward.

Check out a retrospective on Kanish, a fictitious program “which ran from early 1977 until late early 1977,” below: READ FULL STORY

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