“Saturday Night Live” Got Around COVID-19 Rules By Paying Its Live Audience $150 Each (UPDATE)
Saturday Night Live went back into the studio this past weekend for the first time since coronavirus started fucking with our breathing parts more than walking into a perfume fumes hot box known as a busy Sephora. While most shows are going on without a live studio audience, Lorne Michaels decided that SNL really needed one, but New York state has thrown down a ban on ticketed events and that restriction is still in place. SNL found a way around that by “casting” audience members as actors pretty much. Well, it does take some acting skills do laugh at some of those jokes. But people playing the role of “SNL audience member” this weekend may want to demand a check worth (insert however much a lung transplant costs) because the musical guest, country singer Morgan Wallen (pronounced: WHOTHEFUCKISTHAT?!), has been partying like it’s 1999 (a time when COVID didn’t exist).
The audience of SNL’s season premiere didn’t sit six feet apart, but they did wear masks and were put in small groups together. The New York Times says that they also got a rapid COVID test and had to sign some shit, stating that they haven’t had any coronavirus symptoms and haven’t been in contact with anyone with COVID. Audience members got tickets through a site called 1ota, which screens audience members for events and talk shows. SNL audience members of the past never got paid, but Sean Ludwig, who was at Saturday night’s show, tells the NYT that he and his friends got a check for $150 after the show was finished:
Sean Ludwig, who attended the “S.N.L.” season premiere over the weekend, said that he and seven friends who had gone with him each received a check for $150 from Universal Television, a division of NBC’s parent company, when the show was over.
“We had no idea we would be paid before we were handed checks,” Ludwig said. “We were all very pleasantly surprised.”
While Sean seems really happy about that $150, I’d be searching for more zeroes on that check for being exposed to Alec Baldwin and those dead bleach worm brows he wears to play Trump.
Current state rules in NY allow TV shows to film in front of an audience BUT the audience has to be made up of paid employees and can only be 25% of its normal size. So SNL got around those rules by paying their audience. A rep for SNL told the NYT that they worked with the Department of Health and followed all guidelines. The health department gave this statement:
A spokesman for the state health department, Jonah Bruno, said in a statement on Monday night that “S.N.L.” had confirmed to them that it had followed the state’s reopening guidance by selecting audience members through a third-party screening and casting process and by compensating them for their time.
“There is no evidence of noncompliance,” he said, “but if any is discovered, we will refer that to local authorities for follow-up.”
Well, the health department may be following-up with local authorities soon, because this weekend’s SNL episode will be hosted by comedian Bill Burr and the musical guest Morgan Wallen spent the weekend becoming a one-man MONO and COVID nightmare by partying and kissing on sorority girls who have just been inducted into The Love Yourself Hall of Shame.
The Cabela’s clearance section version of Billy Ray Cyrus, whose ex-fiancee gave birth to his first kid in July, partied at a bar and a house party in Tuscaloosa, Alabama where he didn’t wear a mask and raw dog kissed on several women:
I’ve seen like 87 tiktoks similar to this one. Morgan Wallen belongs to the streets. pic.twitter.com/LNeZVc3v6v
— 🍂Tyne🍂 (@RyleeTWing) October 5, 2020
Let us take a moment to recognize that Morgan Wallen is a total dirt bag. Most of the girls in this video are 19 years old. As a reminder, he is 27 with a baby.
Round of applause, dude.@MorganWallen pic.twitter.com/3UyH2Qsw84
— Heather Kirk (@heatherkirkk) October 4, 2020
Okay, it’s one thing to catch coronavirus from sitting in the audience at SNL, but it’s another to catch it from something called a Morgan Wallen who should be in jail anyway for butchering a baby Wookie and wearing it on his head:
I mean, at least those shit bubbles Smash Mouth had a song on the Shrek soundtrack.
UPDATE: And you can go back to forgetting who Morgan Wallen is because he’s been dropped from the show.