9:33pm PT by Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya
'SNL' Spoofs Twitter Callout Culture With Casting Challenge Skit
Idris Elba hosted NBC's Saturday Night Live for the first time, and one sketch poked some fun at the ongoing rumors that the actor could play the next James Bond that have been circulating since 2014.
In a game show parody called "Can I Play That?," three working actors played by Elba, Cecily Strong and Beck Bennett were all told new casting news and had to comment on whether the particular famous actor could play the part, playing on the Twitter discourse that often unfurls after a casting announcement. The faux game show, Kenan Thompson as the host joked, was produced by Twitter.
Thompson asked the contestants if Will Smith could play the father of Serena Williams, and Strong answered "no, because he's not black enough," which was deemed the correct answer. Elba's character said he could play a blind person, while the other contestants explained he could not. He correctly answered that he could not play Caitlyn Jenner, and Thompson remarked "no one can."
Thompson also said that only one person could play the ghost of Michael Jackson and asked the contestants to guess that person. Strong said Rami Malek, which the host deemed correct. Malek recently won the Academy Award for best actor for his portrayal of Queen frontman Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody.
In the bonus round, Thompson asked if they could play James Bond, and Elba said he knew the answer to that question.
In another sketch, Elba also played a character named Bruce Banner, a reference to The Hulk, who turned out to be a man who transformed into a self-righteous white woman when confronted with customer service issues. Strong played the angry woman he transformed into.
Elba also appeared alongside Thompson and Chris Redd in a segment called “The Playaz,” which focused on “the gold diggers of the WNBA.” In another sports-related sketch, Elba played an injured Arsenal soccer player who decided to become a temporary sports announcer but was very bad it. He kept saying inappropriate remarks, including that he would “smash that” about his teammate’s wife.
The evening's host also played “The Great Rudolpho,” a magician. In the sketch, Thompson played a character who was trying to kill his wife, played by Leslie Jones, by volunteering her to be the magician’s assistant.