Syfy Pushes Into Animation With Series From 'SNL' Veterans

'Alien News Desk' will star Will Forte and Heidi Gardner and counts 'Saturday Night Live' creator Lorne Michaels as an exec producer.
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Will Forte, Heidi Gardner

Syfy is getting in the animation game with Alien News Desk, a weekly late-night series from a team of Saturday Night Live veterans.

The show, scheduled for a 12-episode run premiering in early 2019, marks the cable channel's first original late-night animated series. Former SNL regular Will Forte and current castmember Heidi Gardner will voice the two main characters, extraterrestrial news anchors Drexx Drudlarr and Tuva Van Void. They will provide topical commentary on the universe's most baffling species: humans.

"The expansion into original animation and late night marks the next step in the evolution of Syfy and builds on the successes we've had bringing new, younger viewers to the network," said Chris McCumber, president, entertainment networks for NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. "Tackling news, politics and entertainment from the perspective of alien newscasters completely puzzled by our human ways, Alien News Desk is a fun, irreverent way to put a uniquely Syfy spin on the late-night current affairs genre."

Alien News Desk also has a substantial SNL connection behind the scenes: "Weekend Update" head writer Dennis McNicholas is the showrunner, and Lorne Michaels and SNL producer Erik Kenward are also EPs, along with Joel Kuwahara and Scott Greenberg of animation studio Bento Box Entertainment (Bob's Burgers, Paradise PD) and Andrew Singer from Michaels' company, Broadway Video.

The series adds to the current adult-animation boom in TV, with more than a dozen new series having premiered in 2018.