Although this weekend will mark Aubrey Plaza’s first time hosting Saturday Night Live (and her first time kissing Chloe Fineman) it’s not her first encounter with the venerable variety show. During an interview on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Plaza looked back on her jaw-dropping audition for SNL over 15 years ago.
Before going on to star in Parks and Recreations and White Lotus, Plaza got her start as an intern for SNL’s set design team around 2005. About her time as a young intern in the midst of such iconic talent, Plaza recalled, “I was a creepy stalker. But now I’m going to host it, so my master plan worked.”
Plaza went on to share that she once auditioned to become a cast member. “I didn’t make it to the Lorne [Michaels] audition, the famous final audition, but I did a preliminary first-round showcase,” she said.
Although the audition didn’t go all the way, the characters she chose to perform are nothing short of spectacular. “I remember one character I did was like a Puerto Rican news reporter that was always trying to make all of the news stories sexy, even if they were horrific news stories. And I was just trying to sex up the news or something,” said Plaza.
Her second character got weird very quickly—because if you’re going for SNL, you might as well go all the way. Plaza explained, “I was a pill-popping housewife that had my own talk show called ‘Celebri-Tails’ where I would just name celebrities and say what kind of tail they would have if they had a tail.
“Like I would say, ‘Lindsay Lohan would have a bushy squirrel’s tail.’ Or, ‘Bill Clinton would have a polar bear’s nub.’” Afterwards, Plaza seemed about to suggest that Oprah Winfrey would have a dragon’s tail before changing the subject.
While the world never got to witness these amazing characters, we will soon finally experience Plaza’s brand of sketch comedy on SNL’s first episode of 2023, (in which she smooches Chloe Fineman.) The episode will also feature another queer star, Sam Smith as musical guest. Look out for Plaza and Smith when SNL makes its return on January 21.