At first glance, Cecily Strong was one in a series of casualties in the shakeups that preceded Saturday Night Live's 40th season. As previously reported by The Inquisitr, producer Lorne Michaels announced this week that Strong would lose her spot at the Weekend Update anchor desk, where she'd sat for only one season. Her previous co-anchor, Colin Jost, would remain while recent addition Michael Che would be the new face on Update.
Strong is not leaving the show completely. Us Weekly reports she will go back to her spot as a full-time cast member and have the opportunity to revisit her characters that used to stop by the Update desk.
Taking to Instagram Friday, Strong was clear she is not upset about the change. Posing with her dog with a heating pad on her neck, the star captioned:
"I don't see this as me leaving update, just as me being on update in a looser, goofier way that is a lot more fun for me and in a way I think I'm better at. And now I get to do features with the very funny and wonderful Michael Che!"Uproxx and Vulture seemed more concerned with the underlying reason why Twitter suspended Strong's account. Cecily has not spoken out about the reason behind that, and Vulture encouraged readers to "feel free to make some wild speculations."
The Hollywood Reporter described the recent SNL changes as part of the show's "rebuilding process." In addition to moving Strong off the Update desk and recruiting Che, formerly of The Daily Show, many of the people that were featured last season have been let go. Last year's rookie cast members Brooks Whelan, Noel Wells and John Milhiser won't be in front of the camera this season. Long time player Nasim Pedrad also left to star in the new Fox sitcom Mulaney.
NPR notes Che was an SNL writer before joining the ranks of correspondents on The Daily Show. He will be the first African-American behind the Update desk and part of the first all-male Update anchor team. The show faced controversy last year because of its lack of diversity on its writing team and cast members. It made some targeted hiring decisions as a result.
Speaking to the New York Times this week, executive producer Lorne Michaels described Che's addition as part of a more organic move:
"This is about a new era, what feels appropriate for now. That's why we did a lot of combinations and tests, and this is kind of where we came out."The new season of SNL starts on September 27th with Chris Pratt as featured host and pop star Ariana Grande as musical guest.