Eddie Murphy to return to 'SNL' after more than 3 decades

Murphy will host the 40th anniversary special

By Joanna Rothkopf
January 30, 2015 10:50PM (UTC)
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Eddie Murphy appears onstage at the “The Comedy Awards” presented by Comedy Central in New York, Saturday, March 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Sykes) (Charles Sykes)

Eddie Murphy, one of the best-known "Saturday Night Live" cast members from the 1980s, will return to host the show's 40th anniversary special -- his first time on the show after more than 30 years. The special is set to air Feb. 15.

"It just never worked out where the timing was right for me to do it," said Murphy in an interview with News One Now. "They're having a 40th anniversary. I'm going to do that. And that will be the first time I've been back since I left."


Murphy began his stand-up comedy career when he was 15-years-old, and joined the sketch comedy show in 1981 at age 19.

Rolling Stone's Ryan Reed reports:

In recent years, Murphy has slowed down his acting schedule, appearing most recently in the 2011 all-star comedy Tower Heist and the critically panned 2012 dramedy A ThousandWords. Though his last studio album, Love'sAlright, came out in 1993, he's unexpectedly released a handful of new reggae singles in recent years, including the Snoop Lion-featured 2013 track "Red Light" and the newly shared "Oh Jah Jah."  

Reed also notes that Murphy and the cast didn't always get along after his last appearance as a host in 1984. "They said some shitty things. There was that David Spade sketch [when Spade showed a picture of Murphy around the time of Vampire in Brooklyn and said, 'Look, children, a falling star']. I made a stink about it, it became part of the folklore. What really irritated me about it at the time was that it was a career shot. It was like, 'Hey, come on, man, it's one thing for you guys to do a joke about some movie of mine, but my career? I'm one of you guys. How many people have come off this show whose careers really are fucked up, and you guys are shitting on me?'" said Murphy in a 2011 interview with the magazine.


"I felt shitty about that for years, but now, I don't have none of that," he continued. "I wouldn't go to retrospectives, but I don't let it linger."

Joanna Rothkopf

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