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1985: Lorne Michaels Returns for Second Stint with 'SNL'
November 9, 2017  | By TV WW
 
This day in 1985 marked the eleventh season premiere of NBC's Saturday Night Live, with host Madonna and musical guest Simple Minds. But the episode's true significance was that it marked the return of the show's creator and founding producer, Lorne Michaels.

The groundbreaking, late-night comedy show made its debut in 1975 (with the title NBC's Saturday Night) with its largely unknown "Not Ready for Prime Time Players": John Belushi, Jane Curtin, Gilda Radner, Dan Aykroyd, Laraine Newman, Garrett Morris and Chevy Chase.  The show became a pop-culture phenomenon.

During the show's fifth year, rocky contract negotiations and ongoing disagreements with network brass led to Michaels' exit at the close of the season. In 1980, the show's associate producer/talent coordinator Jean Doumanian took the reins, lasting just one season. The show was then put in the hands of Dick Ebersol, who had played a role in developing the show with Michaels, for the next four seasons.

In 1985, the head of NBC's entertainment division, Brandon Tartikoff, convinced Michaels to return to the program. Michaels still oversees the show, which is now in its 38th season.
 
 
 
 
 
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