Saturday Night Live (Season 7)

"Saturday Night Live" aired its seventh season during the 1981 - 1982 television season on NBC. Following the termination of producer Jean Doumanian and the majority of her castmembers (repertory players Gilbert Gottfried, Ann Risley, and Charles Rocket and feature players Yvonne Hudson, Patrick Weathers, and Matthew Laurance), NBC had put the show on hiatus to retool it. Dick Ebersol (Lorne Michael's co-creator of SNL) was hired as Doumanian's replacement. The new cast of SNL for this season were the ones from the episode Dick Ebersol produced on the April 11, 1981 episode: Robin Duke, Tim Kazurinsky and Tony Rosato along with the Jean Doumanian era's sole survivors Eddie Murphy and Joe Piscopo. Denny Dillon and Gail Matthius were fired following the April 1981 episode while Laurie Metcalf and unseen castmember Emily Prager weren't asked back to be castmembers on the show. Two new female castmembers, Mary Gross and Christine Ebersole were hired to replace Metcalf and Prager.

A big difference this season was that the popular opening line "Live from New York, It's Saturday Night!" was not said during cold openings (and sometimes cold openings weren't even shown) and the monologues were skipped over entirely. These changes weren't permanent, as Ebersol decided to change them back for the . Weekend Update went through its first name change and became "SNL Newsbreak". At the newsdesk was feature player Brian Doyle-Murray with Mary Gross and Christine Ebersole alternately filling in as co-anchor.

Additionally, this was the only season without announcer Don Pardo, but instead the voice-overs were done by Mel Brandt, except for two episodes that aired in December of 1981 (see below) where veteran NBC News announcer Bill Hanrahan handled such duties.

The seventh season also saw the death of original SNL castmember, John Belushi, from a cocaine/heroin overdose. The original airing of the Robert Urich/Mink DeVille episode had a tribute to Belushi.

The seventh season started on October 3, 1981 and ended on May 22, 1982. A standard total of 20 episodes were broadcast.


Repertory cast members

*Robin Duke
*Christine Ebersole
*Mary Gross
*Tim Kazurinsky
*Eddie Murphy
*Joe Piscopo
*Tony Rosato

Featured cast members

*Brian Doyle-Murray


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