Meet SNL's Newest Cast Member, Sasheer Zamata

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zamaraaa11Photo: Courtesy of Instagram/TheSheerTruth.
The search is over. For the first time since 2007, Saturday Night Live will have a black female cast member, and her name is Sasheer Zamata. According to Deadline Hollywood, the Upright Citizens Brigade alumna will make her highly anticipated debut two weeks from now, with Drake set to host.

The show had to weather a ton of criticism last year, when it introduced an all-white stable of new cast members. In particular, people harped on the fact that Lorne Michaels had not cast an African American woman since Maya Rudolph, one of the show's most popular players ever. In defense of Michaels, black cast member Kenan Thompson implied that there simply weren't any women of color qualified to take stage at studio 8H. "It’s just a tough part of the business,” he said at the time. “Like in auditions, they just never find ones that are ready.”

Apparently, Zamata didn't get the memo.

To his credit, Michaels didn't stand idly by while the controversy grew. He began holding semi-secret auditions across the country in search of an African American comedian. Zamata was among 12 actresses invited to test on the hallowed SNL stage on December 16, which means she literally just found out that she landed the gig.

We're not sure how SNL plans on introducing Zamata, but if November's self-reflexive sketch featuring Kerry Washington as Oprah, Beyoncé, and Michelle Obama was any indication, expect the writing team to skewer themselves once more. We, for one, can't wait. (Deadline)