The promo clip for Saturday Night Live’s season finale has dropped. It features the bemasked trio of host Anya Taylor-Joy, musical guest Lil Nas X and castmember Chris Redd. In the clip, Taylor-Joy and Nas X agree that their show will be the best of the season. Redd then tries to initiate a group hug, but gets turned down.
NBC announced that the final two episodes of “Saturday Night Live” for its 46th season will welcome first-time hosts Keegan-Michael Key and Anya Taylor-Joy alongside respective freshman musical guests Olivia Rodrigo and Lil Nas X.
Key, who rose to fame alongside Jordan Peele by creating and starring in the “Key and Peele” comedy series and will soon appear alongside “SNL” cast member Cecily Strong in Apple TV Plus’ “Schmigadoon!”, will host on May 15. Taylor-Joy, who recently took home Golden Globe and SAG Awards for her Netflix limited series “The Queen’s Gambit,” will host the season finale on May 22.
Rodrigo, who will appear on the May 15 episode, is currently boasting the hit single “Drivers License” from her forthcoming debut album “Sour.” The track debuted at No. 1 across major streaming services and broke the Spotify record for the most single-day streams for a non-holiday song. It will be one of 11 songs featured on “Sour,” which releases on May 21.
On May 22, Lil Nas X will take the Studio 8H stage at “SNL” to perform his viral single “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” and he will also perform a brand-new song. This week, “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)” officially rose to No. 1 on the Billboard Global Excl. U.S. singles chart and two global charts.
The late-night sketch comedy series has been on hiatus for a few weeks, but these two newly-announced episodes are following the May 8 episode, which will welcome Elon Musk as host and Miley Cyrus as musical guest. While this will mark the SpaceX CEO’s first appearance on the show, Cyrus will be making her sixth visit as a musical guest. Her most recent album, “Plastic Hearts,” bowed last November.
Additional hosts this season have included Chris Rock, Bill Burr, Issa Rae, Adele, John Mulaney, Dave Chappelle, Jason Bateman, Timothée Chalamet, Kristen Wiig, John Krasinski, Dan Levy, Regina King, Regé-Jean Page, Nick Jonas, Maya Rudolph and Daniel Kaluuya.
This season’s musical acts have included the likes of Megan Thee Stallion, Jack White, Justin Bieber, H.E.R., The Strokes, Foo Fighters, Morgan Wallen, Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, Due Lipa, Machine Gun Kelly, Phoebe Bridgers, Nathaniel Rateliff, Bad Bunny, Jack Harlow, St. Vincent and Kid Cudi.
Fans of The Queen’s Gambit: Don’t give up hope yet!
On Sunday night, one week after picking up a Golden Globe, Anya Taylor-Joy collected a Best Actress Critics Choice award for her work in Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit. And during a backstage chat with the press via Zoom, she addressed repeated calls for a second season of the much-loved show.
“It is obviously incredibly flattering that people want to spend more time with characters that we care so much about and that we poured so much love into,” she said, “but we did intend it to be a limited series, so we were all quite surprised when people started asking for Season 2. That being said, never say never.”
The show, which follows chess champ Beth Harmon through the trials and tribulations of child stardom and life for a female star in the 1950s and ’60s, saw Taylor-Joy embracing chess for the role.
Asked what chess taught her about life, she said, “It’s such a beautiful metaphor. I guess that you can have a plan but you have to be able to adapt, you have to be able to pivot. …it’s important to attack but also to defend, and you have to learn when to do both. And you need all the pieces on the board. It’s not just the queen roaming around. You need every single one of them.”
“The Queen’s Gambit” just said “checkmate” to its first big awards.
Netflix’s hit chess adaptation took home two top prizes at Sunday night’s Golden Globes: limited series, anthology or TV movie and limited series/TV movie actress for star Anya Taylor-Joy. It marks the first major prizes for “The Queen’s Gambit,” as well as the first prominent award for Taylor-Joy.
During her speech, Taylor-Joy especially thanked co-creator, writer and director Scott Frank.
“Scott Frank, my god, I love you,” she said. “Thank you for letting me be part of the journey and thank you for trusting me with Beth.”
“It’s obviously wonderful that everyone has seen the show, but I would do this project again and again and again,” she went on. “I learned so much. I’m so grateful, and thank you to the audiences that have watched it and supported the character. It meant the world.”
Taylor-Joy was a double nominee at this year’s Globes, winning for her portrayal of addict and chess prodigy Beth Harmon in Netflix’s “The Queen’s Gambit,” but she was also in the running on the film side of the ballot for “Emma.” (She lost the film award to Rosamund Pike from “I Care A Lot.”)
Taylor-Joy is the first Latina to win in this category. She was nominated alongside Cate Blanchett (“Mrs. America”), Daisy Edgar-Jones (“Normal People”), Shira Haas (“Unorthodox”) and Nicole Kidman (“The Undoing”). “The Queen’s Gambit” was nominated alongside the same streamer’s “Unorthodox,” Amazon Prime Video’s “Small Axe,” Hulu’s “Normal People” and HBO’s “The Undoing.”
From the moment she put down Walter Tevis’ book The Queen’s Gambit, Anya Taylor-Joy knew how she would portray chess genius Beth Harmon, who blazes a trail and explodes glass ceilings during the Cold War-era 1960s as a femme champion in the testosterone-dominated game-peg playing world.
“I said to myself, ‘If we were shooting tomorrow, I know exactly what I’m doing, I know how I want to do it, I understand this woman so well’ “, said Taylor-Joy, the American-born Argentine-British actress who received not only SAG and Golden Globe nominantions for the role but also, Globe Best movie actress nom for her turn in Focus Features’ update of Jane Austen’s Emma.
“With Beth, it was instincts on a whole other level, I never had to reach for anything,” Taylor-Joy said. “They just had to yell ‘action’ and something would happen.”
On playing the ferociously ambitious, complex young woman, whose orphan life and death of her mother (and adopted mother) triggered a drug- and alcohol-addled life, Taylor-Joy describes Harmon as someone who “had this singular focus, this kind of drive and hunger for something where nothing else mattered. A priority such as ‘I hope this person doesn’t think me rude, if I’m more abrupt with them’ — that doesn’t figure [into her]; she’s thinking about her goal.”
After the Netflix show amassed 62 million viewing households around the world in its first 28 days, becoming the streamer’s most watched limited series ever, who doesn’t want a second season of The Queen’s Gambit? But, alas, creator Scott Frank and EP William Horberg have indicated there isn’t apt to be a second season given the series’ being faithful to the parameters of the 1983 novel.
“It’s so surreal and very wonderful that people want a second season, because we never thought about it, there was no discussion about it,” Taylor-Joy tells Deadline. “That said, never say ‘never’ in Hollywood.”
Given how Taylor-Joy has lived in Harmon’s skin, what are her hopes for the character’s future? Is it one of global-winning chess tournaments or a tragic fate? “It would be very interesting to see how Beth would be as a mother, now that she’s sober and more cognizant of the demons that pull her down,” she said.
As to why The Queen’s Gambit hit a nerve with mass audiences, playing far beyond the sophisticated demographic at which it was aimed, Taylor-Joy says, “There’s something to be said of a character whose biggest enemy is herself. I think all of us living at home and being locked up, we’re probably confronting a lot more of ourselves than we’re used to, because we are used to being distracted. When you’re locked up in your house, there’s only a certain amount of room to run away from yourself. That is potentially something people were a bit more open to at the end of the day. The show also has a wonderful message: Even if you’re brilliant, you still need help. We work better with support, and I think Beth sees the beauty in the support that she garners eventually.”
While Taylor-Joy’s career was already on an upswing before Queen’s Gambit, breaking out in Robert Eggers’ 2015 Sundance hit The Witch and continuing with M. Night Shyamalan in Split and Glass as well as pics like Edgar Wright’s upcoming Last Night in Soho, the actress has catapulted herself from one stratosphere to the heavens in regards to her demand. Post Queen’s Gambit, George Miller selected Taylor-Joy to play Furiosa in the Mad Max prequel, a role made famous by Charlize Theron. In addition, Taylor-Joy is currently shooting David O. Russell’s new film in Los Angeles, neither project of which she can talk about at this time.
She is also expected to reteam with Queen’s Gambit‘s Frank on a feature adaptation of Lolita author Vladimir Nabokov’s 1932 novel Laughter in the Dark. The plot centers on a young aspiring actress who plots against a married middle-aged art critic to make off with his money.
In regards to how Queen’s Gambit has impacted her career, the actress says, “It’s been really strange as I’ve been sheltered from all of that because of the nature of the time we’re living in. I understand on a cerebral level, but on a physical level, I’ve been quite calm. What makes me the happiest is that every year I spend working, I fall more in love with what I do, and I’m more certain that I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing, and it’s just where I want to be. I think there was a part of me, especially from what other people were saying around me like ‘if you keep working this way, you’re going to burn out, you’re going to become jaded, you’re really not going to love what you do anymore,’ and I see it as the opposite. I’m getting more fascinated with what I do, I’m getting more excited to push boundaries, and I want to test myself more.”
Nominations for the 78th annual Golden Globe Awards were revealed Wednesday and Anya Taylor-Joy became a Double golden globe nominee!
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE – MUSICAL OR COMEDY
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A LIMITED SERIES, ANTHOLOGY SERIES OR A MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION
THE QUEEN’S GAMBIT
While we still don’t know much about David O. Russell’s forthcoming feature for New Regency, Deadline has confirmed that Robert De Niro, Mike Myers, Timothy Olyphant, Michael Shannon, Chris Rock, Anya Taylor-Joy, Andrea Riseborough, Matthias Schoenaerts and Alessandro Nivola have joined the starry ensemble.
Christian Bale, Margot Robbie, John David Washington, Rami Malek and Zoe Saldana also will star in the untitled project, which is based on an original idea from the five-time Oscar-nominated filmmaker. Filming is underway in California with New Regency’s Arnon Milchan producing alongside Matthew Budman and Anthony Katagas
Russell hasn’t released a film since 2015’s Joy, starring Jennifer Lawrence in a role that earned her an Oscar nom. Deadline broke the story of his current project early last year. New Regency will distribute the pic through its deal with 20th Century Studios.