“Kenan” Premieres Feb. 16 on NBC


Screenshot courtesy of NBC.com

Screenshot of “Kenan” on NBC website.

Tiara Starks, Entertainment Editor

Longtime Saturday Night Live (SNL) cast member Kenan Thompson is getting his own prime time show on NBC.

In the upcoming single-camera sitcom “Kenan,” Thompson portrays a high-profile morning radio show host who recently became the widowed father of two daughters. He enlists the help of his overbearing father-in-law and goofy but well-meaning brother played by SNL castmate, Chris Redd — two members of his family who aren’t afraid to give the single dad some advice on how he should navigate his newfound lifestyle.

Thompson has been a part of the famed late-night sketch comedy show since 2003, deeming him the longest-running cast member so far in SNL history. He contributed his talents to multiple eras of ensembles with his portrayals of famous figures such as Al Sharpton, Steve Harvey and David Ortiz.

The Atlanta-born comedic actor came to prominence after being an ensemble member of the Nickelodeon children’s sketch comedy show, “All That,” followed by a co-starring role in his own show with actor Kel Mitchell in Nickelodeon’s “Kenan and Kel.”

NBC held virtual press tour sessions for Thompson where he spoke about him and Redd both planning to remain cast members on “Saturday Night Live.” The duo will be traveling between filming “Kenan” in Los Angeles and Saturday Night Live in New York.

“There used to be a time when people would leave the show and go into their careers,” said Thompson. “But I’m of the mindset where I think you can kind of do both as long as you can and then, you know, if the departure comes in a natural sort of way then so be it.”

This isn’t the first time a cast member has been able to juggle the responsibilities of the sketch show and deal with contract renewal speculations. Both Aidy Bryant and Cecily Strong have taken time off to tape their own respective television shows. Bryant’s show, “Shrill” can be found currently streaming on Hulu and has been renewed for its third and final season while Strong has been in and out of production for her upcoming Apple TV musical comedy series.

“Kenan” will be executive produced by SNL creator Lorne Michaels, David Caspe, Jackie Clarke, Ken Whittingham, and Andrew Singer.

Watch the show’s trailer and recent clips on the official NBC website. You can catch the premiere of “Kenan” at 8:30/7:30c on Feb. 16.