A difficult decision. Pete Davidson confirmed he was leaving Saturday Night Live in May 2022 after joining the NBC sketch comedy series in 2014. The announcement was shocking since the Staten Island native has never shied away from speaking out about the show.
“He has treated me with nothing but love and he’s like a father figure to me,” Davidson told Charlamagne Tha God during a lengthy interview in February 2021, despite noting that there is a “cutthroat” atmosphere behind-the-scenes. “Everyone’s trying to get their s–t on. Everyone wants to be the next thing. So it’s not like a loving, care … Like you’re not going to get coddled over there. You know, they don’t give a f–k at the end of the day.”
The New Yorker was only 20 when he landed a part on the show, becoming one of the youngest cast members. He noted in 2021 that his initial contract was coming to an end.
“It is my seventh year and that’s what the contract is usually for,” the Big Time Adolescence actor and producer told Gold Derby in June 2021. “[The season 46 finale] was really emotional. I worked with these guys for a fourth of my life. … I started there with acne and left with tattoos. It was just like a crazy, long period of time, and [I] wasn’t ready for the season to end yet because I was really having so much fun.”
The Set It Up star had been starring in more and more films since he joined SNL, including Suicide Squad, The Things They Carried and Meet Cute. Yet he returned for season 47, though he was noticeably absent for much of the early 2022 episodes while filming his thriller The Home.
In late April 2022, Peacock ordered his new half-hour series Bupkis, a fictionalized version of his life produced by Michaels. Davidson confirmed his departure from Saturday Night Live one month later, hours ahead of the season 47 finale, which would be his final episode.
“I owe Lorne Michaels and everyone at SNL my life,” the actor wrote in a lengthy statement at the time. “I’m so grateful and I wouldn’t be here without them. I appreciate you guys always having my back and sticking up for me even when that wasn’t the popular opinion. Thank you for always believing in me and sticking by my side even when it seemed comical. Thank you for teaching me life values, how to grow up and for giving me memories that will last a lifetime.”
Scroll through the gallery below for everything that Davidson said about leaving the show: