It's official; Andy Samberg won't return to "Saturday Night Live" next season. Following a long speculation about his departure from the variety series, the "What's Your Number?" star has finally spoken up about the matter during a phone interview with New York Times on Friday, June 1.
"Obviously it's not a huge shock," so the 33-year-old comedian, who joined the NBC show since 2005, said of his exit, "but I did officially decide not to come back." On his feelings about leaving the weekend program that helped launch his career, he admitted, "It's an incredibly emotional and strange moment in my life."
Calling it "one of the hardest decisions" he's ever made, Samberg went on revealing that he came to the conclusion after some discussions with Kristen Wiig, who also left the show at the end of the 37th season. "She kept saying it just feels like it's her time. I connect with that. Something about it just feels like it's the moment. My contract's up and I did so much more than I ever thought I would ever even do," he shared.
Of the possibility that he will occasionally appear on "SNL", he said, "That's the kind of thing that I really do hope happens." Asked when it will happen, the member of comedy group The Lonely Island coyly answered, "Well, hopefully things will work out well enough that they'll want me."
In "SNL" season finale, Samberg did hint at his exit when reprising his role in "Lazy Sunday 2" with Chris Parnell. In the digital short, which served as a sequel to the viral hip-hop hit that made him a breakout star on the variety show back in 2005, the "Friends With Benefits" actor replied, "And that's how I'ma finish it," after Parnell rapped, "That's how it began."