Saturday Night Live may soon be losing a beloved cast member to the world of prime time television. Last week, Kenan Thompson received a pilot order from NBC for his own series, Saving Kenan–and if it gets picked up, the comedian will likely leave the late-night sketch show.
Saving Kenan would be a family sitcom starring Thompson as a recently-widowed dad trying to raise his family. Not only would he be the lead actor, but Thompson would also be one of the executive producers, along with SNL colleague Lorne Michaels, Portlandia‘s Andrew Singer, and Superstore‘s Jackie Clarke. (Clarke would be one of the show’s writer as well.)
Currently, Thompson, who has been a part of the SNL regular lineup since 2003, holds the record for the longest-running cast member in the show’s history, with a total of 16 seasons to date. He was also the first cast member to join the show born after it premiered in 1975.
And according to the 40-year-old comedian, who won his first Emmy for Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series last year, leaving SNL wouldn’t be an easy decision.
In a past interview with Deadline, Thompson said, “If it was possible I’d stay forever and just retire as the one guy that never left, basically. I’d be totally fine with that, but at the same time I still have aspirations.”
If Saving Kenan is picked up by NBC, it will be produced by Michaels’ Broadway Video company and is predicted to premiere during the network’s 2019 to 2020 TV season.