Adam Sandler was on Saturday Night Live from 1990 through 1995, working from writer to featured player to cast member, and creating memorable characters like Opera Man, Cajun Man, and Canteen Boy, as well as the iconic “The Hanukkah Song.” Sandler almost immediately began appearing in movies and left the show around the time of his first starring role, Billy Madison, in 1995.
But somehow, in all of the years since he left and through a long run as a movie star, Sandler has never returned to host Saturday Night Live, even though most of his contemporaries have done the same. Now, he’s about to do so for the first time.
Sandler is set to host Saturday Night Live on May 4, Deadline reported Friday. Shawn Mendes will be the evening’s musical guest. Kit Harington, who is best known as Jon Snow on Game of Thrones, is set to host the show this coming Saturday with musical guest Sara Bareilles, while Emma Stone will return to host April 13, with musical guest BTS.
“We are happy to welcome Adam back to SNL in what is sure to be a special night,” longtime Saturday Night Live chief Lorne Michaels told Deadline.
In addition to his famous characters, Sandler was part of the show with a crew that included Chris Farley and Rob Schneider, as well as holdovers from the previous era like Phil Hartman, Kevin Nealon, and Mike Myers.
While Sandler has never hosted the show before, he has returned occasionally for anniversary specials and other special occasions. It’s very customary for former cast members to come back and host, but for whatever reason Sandler never has.
Adam Sandler to Host ‘Saturday Night Live’ For the First Time https://t.co/ssZSer0EhW— Variety (@Variety) April 5, 2019
Sandler and Farley left Saturday Night Live in 1995- Sandler would later say they were fired, as that was the year that a brand new cast, led by Will Ferrell and Jim Breuer, joined the show. Sandler continued as a comedy movie star for a long time after leaving, while occasionally sprinkling in dramatic roles, such as Punch Drunk Love, Spanglish, Funny People, and The Meyerowitz Stories.
In more recent years, Sandler has been starring frequently in Netflix movies produced by his production entity Happy Madison Productions, while also recently starring in the Netflix comedy special 100% Fresh. Sandler is set to star later this year in the Netflix film Murder Mystery.
It’s not clear if Sandler will be bringing back any of the old characters that he hasn’t performed on an SNL episode in nearly 25 years, and the time isn’t quite seasonably right for a reprise of “The Hanukkah Song.”