Skip To Content
Fast Forward

Lorne Michaels To SNL Cast: Don’t ‘Vilify’ Trump

“Saturday Night Live” creator and executive producer Lorne Michaels allegedly told the cast to tone down criticism of President Trump back when he was a candidate, The Hill reported Friday.

Michaels suggested they “make him likable” and don’t “vilify him,” former SNL actor Taran Killam revealed on an episode of the “I Was There Too” podcast, where he talked about what the energy was like on set leading up to the 2016 presidential election.

The comedian played Trump on the show before he left in August 2016, according to the Hill.

Killam recalled what Michaels said: “He’s like any New York taxi driver … He just says whatever it is he’s thinking. You have to find a way in that makes him likable.”

Michaels, who is Jewish, gave the pep talk before he made the controversial decision to invite Trump to host the show in 2015, according to Vulture.

Killam has been vocal about his contempt for that decision.

“It was rough,” he said last year. “It was not enjoyable at the time and something that only grows more embarrassing and shameful as time goes on.”

Alyssa Fisher is a news writer at the Forward. Email her at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter at @alyssalfisher


Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.