Saturday Night Live veteran Tina Fey will not return to the late-night show as she turns her attention to her NBC rookie comedy, 30 Rock, which premieres this fall.
“I know I will never, ever not be there in some way,” she said Saturday at the Television Critics Association press tour. “But I will not be in the cast, I won’t be a paid employee of Saturday Night Live next year.”
Fey is coming off her sixth season as head writer on SNL, on which she also hosted the “Weekend Update” segment. Fey first joined the writing staff of SNL in 1997.
SNL creator Lorne Michaels acknowledged the show would feel Fey’s loss.
“Am I happy about it? No. But it was time for Tina to do her own show.”
Michaels said that no head writer has been hired as of yet and that the show would begin testing replacements for the “Weekend Update” beginning in September.