Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary, Coneheads, Stefon Photos


“[Wearing the conehead could be] a wonderful feeling. It’s like kind of a crown that you have an honor to put on in honor of Tom Davis, the co-writer, and also Jane [Curtin] and Laraine [Newman], they’re in that royal family right there. From the very beginning we knew we had something there. If we had to send footage to another planet as goodwill ambassadorship we should send all of Jane’s clips.” –Dan Aykroyd

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“The first Stefon was the third-to-last show of that season. The last show of the season, [SNL creator] Lorne [Michaels] said, ‘I want another Stefon,’ which really kind of surprised us. So John [Mulaney] and I wrote another one. When I came out, I got, like, recognition applause, and I’m really thinking, ‘Whoa, this is kind of cool.’ I remember looking past the cue cards and seeing Andy Samberg congratulating Mulaney, kind of shaking him with his hands on his shoulders like, ‘Dude! Do you hear that? They love it! Congratulations! You’ve got yourself a hit character!'” –Bill Hader

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“When Will and I first got cast, everyone who was hired went down to Studio 8H and started improvising. I was a cheerleader in Catholic school, and whenever we were in the gym, we would stomp our feet to a beat. I was waiting for my turn to improvise [at SNL], and I started doing that. And then Will started doing it. We just laughed and said, ‘Hey, we should write a cheerleader sketch.’ We didn’t even know what the look was going to be and just thought it would be funny that they didn’t even make the squad. I knew we were a hit when I went to Bed Bath amp Beyond: I’m in line and I see a button and a refrigerator magnet with the cheerleaders. I couldn’t believe it. I’m looking at everybody in line, I’m looking at the button, and that’s me. When Bed Bath amp Beyond makes you a refrigerator magnet …” –Cheri Oteri

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“Church Lady was a character I developed in small comedy clubs before I got SNL. At first it was just a voice. I was improvising one night and the phrase ‘Well isn’t that special?’ came out. It got a laugh. Over several months the character became the Church Lady. A writer at SNL, Rosie Shuster, helped me develop Church Chat as a vehicle for the character. Still a fun attitude to play – though the dress was kind of itchy. [I’m still] shocked the character got so popular, but I guess everybody knows a ‘church lady.'” –Dana Carvey

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“The best way to get on the show is to just write yourself in. I had this character Mary Katherine Gallagher, a nervous schoolgirl, but a writer looked at my sketch and said, ‘Nah, it won’t play.’ They finally put it in the show, and I went crazy, flinging myself around and falling into chairs and sliding. It killed! I added the ‘superstar!’ at the end as a joke for my friend who was watching – I used to tell her I’d be a ‘superstah’ one day. The rest is history. People still come up to me in airports and say, ‘Superstar!’ I love it.” –Molly Shannon

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