Julia Louis-Dreyfus on 'SNL' in the '80s: "It Was a Very Sexist Environment"
Published Apr 14, 2016Saturday Night Live's long and storied past has been documented on more than one occasion, and while it seems to be a more diverse place than it used to be, its former cast members don't always look back on it with rose-tinted glasses. Before she hosts this weekend, for example, Julia Louis-Dreyfus had some less than positive things to say about her original time on the cast.
In a new interview with the New York Times, Louis-Dreyfus says she looks back on her time at SNL "fondly-ish."
She explains that her time on the show from 1982 to 1985 didn't do much for her career — a fact she blames on sexism. "I did not come out of SNL as any kind of name," she said. "I didn't do anything particularly great when I was there. I didn't. It's fine. But I learned a tremendous amount. It was a very sexist environment. Since I've gone back, I can tell you it's much more of an equal-opportunity environment."
Her negative experience on the show inspired her to only take roles that she enjoyed. "I was on it for three years, and when I left, I made this conscious decision that I would not take any jobs that didn't seem as if they would be really fun," she said. "That's very simplistic and Pollyannaish sounding, but really, I noted that. I'm not doing this unless I can have a deep sense of happiness while doing it. I've applied that, moving forward, and it's worked. So in that sense, I have SNL to thank."
With a career that includes standout roles in the likes of Seinfeld and Veep, her career plan has worked out well.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus will host SNL on April 16 with musical guest Nick Jonas.