On September 20, actor James Franco hosts. Franco earned career-making reviews and numerous awards and nominations for his portrayal of James Dean in the TNT biopic. He went on to star in numerous studio and indie films, most recently the Judd Apatow produced stoner comedy smash "Pineapple Express" opposite Seth Rogen. He'll next be seen opposite Richard Gere and Diane Lane in "Nights in Rodanthe" and opposite Sean Penn in the eagerly anticipated "Milk." Franco has also been a fixture in the hugely successful "Spider-Man" trilogy playing Harry Osbourne.
Joining Franco and also making their SNL debut is critically praised rock band Kings of Leon. Comprised of three Tennessee-born brothers and their cousin, the Kings of Leon have been called "the last great genetically pure-bred American rock n'roll band" by the Associated Press. They will be performing from their hotly awaited fourth record "Only By Night," which is the follow up to "Because of the Times" which Entertainment Weekly called their "crowning achievement." Esquire has likened the band to The Clash and The Replacements and their first single from the new record "Sex on Fire" has given them their first No. 1 hit in the UK.
The following week, September 27, comic actress Anna Faris takes the reins. Faris currently stars in the comedy hit "The House Bunny." Faris is likely best known for the hugely successful "Scary Movie" franchise as well as roles in the Academy Award winning films "Lost In Translation" and "Brokeback Mountain." TV viewers may remember her critical role in the final season of NBC's "Friends" as Monica & Chandler's surrogate mother. Faris will soon be starring opposite Seth Rogen in "Observe and Report" and will also be voicing a character opposite SNL's Bill Hader in the animated feature "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs."
Joining Faris on the show is pop-soul sensation Duffy. Duffy will perform from her chart-topping debut album "Rockferry." The album has gone gold and and has sold over 3 million units worldwide. It's spent four months on the Billboard 200 and its produced back-to-back hit singles "Mercy" and "Warwick Avenue." The retro-soul sensation has been dubbed "the female Otis Redding" by The Los Angeles Times.
In addition to the revved-up Saturday schedule, "SNL" is ready for primetime with "Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday." Three LIVE primetime half-hours beginning October 9 at 9:30pm ET. These primetime special editions will be anchored by the show's signature "Weekend Update." This marks a return to the NBC Thursday night lineup for "SNL," which produced similar live "Update"-centered broadcasts in 2001.