‘Saturday Night Live’ Reveals ‘Star Wars’ Host, Controversial Musical Guest To Kick Off Season 44

Will Heath / NBC Television

Saturday Night Live announced it Season 44 premiere host and musical guest on September 17, ending speculation as to when the long-running sketch comedy show would return to NBC.

Adam Driver of Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens and BlacKkKlansman will be the first host of the season.

He will be joined by musical guest Kanye West.

Variety reported that this will mark Driver’s second time hosting the series.

This will West’s seventh musical appearance since 2005. The Grammy-winning rapper’s Ye, released in June, became his eighth consecutive No. 1 album on the Billboard 200.

Rumor has it that during the performance if West’s Instagram and Twitter are any indication of his intentions, he will debut songs from the follow-up to Ye titled Yandhi.

West has released five records in 2018 so far, known as the Wyoming albums.

These include Ye, a collaboration with Kid Cudi titled Kids See Ghosts, Yandhi, which will drop on September 29, a sequel to Watch the Throne, and a long-awaited collaboration with Chance the Rapper.

Variety noted that SNL received 21 Emmy nominations this year.

The show scored seven of those at the Creative Arts Emmys.

Those winners included Tiffany Haddish as Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series, Lorne Michaels for Outstanding Variety Sketch Series, and Keenan Thompson for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics alongside castmembers Chris Redd, Will Stephen, and Eli Brueggemann for the song “Come Back Barack” from an episode hosted by Chance the Rapper.

Variety also noted that Michael Che, Colin Jost, and Kent Sublette will return as co-head writers for the upcoming season. The three served as co-head writers last season on the NBC sketch-comedy.

Not returning as a head writer will be Bryan Tucker, who is stepping down to a position as a senior writer.

Jost and Che, who co-anchor the “Weekend Update” segment, were promoted to co-head writers last season.

Jost had previously served as co-head writer in the 2011-12 season, then stepped away from the position prior to the 2015-16 season. Jost became a cast member and the co-anchor of “Weekend Update” in 2014, and was joined by Che in 2015.

No additional co-head writers for the upcoming 44th season have yet been announced as yet, nor has the host or musical guest been announced for the show’s second episode of the season.

Featured player Luke Null, who made his debut in Season 43, will not be back for the show’s 44th cycle.

The Season 44 premiere of Saturday Night Live will air on NBC on Sept. 29 at 11:30 p.m. ET/PT.