2:39pm PT by Katie Kilkenny
'SNL': Awkwafina to Become First Asian Woman to Host in 18 Years
Awakwafina will likely end Saturday Night Live's 18-year run without an Asian female host when she steps onto the Studio 6H stage Saturday.
The Crazy Rich Asians actress and rapper is the second-ever Asian woman to host the NBC variety show, and the first since Lucy Liu hosted in 2000. She'll also be only the fifth Asian or Asian-American person to ever the show, a list that also includes Aziz Ansari (2017), Kumail Nanjiani (2017) and Jackie Chan (2000).
On Friday, Crazy Rich Asians director Jon M. Chu posted on Instagram, "Headed to New York to see @awkwafina make some history hosting @nbcsnl. She deserves this moment more than anyone I know."
Paper Magazine was the first to report the trend.
According to a 2016 study by Indiewire, 90 percent of the show's hosts between 1975 and May 2016 were white. Only 6.8 percent of the 826 total hosts counted were black, while 1.2 percent were considered Hispanic and 1.1 percent "other." In recent years, the show has made an effort to diversify its cast, which is now 63 percent white.
Since 1975, SNL has aired over 800 episodes across 44 seasons.