For the first time since 2009, no "Saturday Night Live" cast members will depart the show before the next season. According a tweet from TV critic Roger Catlin, executive producer Lorne Michaels made the announcement at the Television Critics Association press tour.
Michaels also added that he would hold auditions for new cast members the end of August. "SNL" featured player Jay Pharoah announced on Twitter that the premiere would be Sept. 24, although the tweet has since been removed. No announcement has been made about the premiere's host or musical guest.
The 2010-11 new featured cast members Pharoah, Vanessa Bayer, Paul Brittain and Taran Killiam all evidently made enough of an impression on audiences (and more importantly, on Michaels) to be invited to return for the next season. In the last few years, "SNL" has let go featured players Casey Wilson, Michaela Watkins and Jenny Slate after 1-2 seasons, with longtime cast member Will Forte leaving in 2010 as well.
However, according to a recent GQ profile of Ms. Slate, getting let go from "SNL" can present as many career opportunities as limitations, if not more.
Here's a clip of returning featured player Vanessa Bayer's popular sketch "The Miley Cyrus Show," also with fellow returnee Paul Brittain.