Weekend Update: Stefon's Valentine's Day

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Weekend Update: Stefon's Valentine's Day

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Weekend Update: Stefon's Valentine's Day

by Saturday Night Live 4:12 mins

Weekend Update: Stefon's Valentine's Day

by Saturday Night Live 4:12 mins

It's a definite no-no to laugh — or break — while performing a skit on "Saturday Night Live." Former cast member Bill Hader seemed to abandon that rule whenever he played Stefon, a club kid invited on to "Weekend Update" to give his terrible and hilarious ideas for places to go in New York City. Part of the giddiness was the character, Hader explained in an interview. However, writer and friend John Mulaney also tried to make him laugh with last-minute line changes. "Usually I start to break towards the end and that's because John [Mulaney] has changed the words or people are just laughing around me. Everyone's laughing and I just can't keep it together," Hader told the comedy website Splitsider. Mulaney's script surprises weren't just to mess with Hader's head. They were to help him get out of his head, Hader explained in an interview with Howard Stern last year. Stricken by stage fright behind the scenes, Hader had a hard time calming down for performances. He told Playboy that he suffered from "panic attacks and sweating. During my first two seasons I wouldn't sleep on Friday night. I'd be up all night." He added, "I kept thinking they were going to realize they'd made a mistake by hiring me." In this Valentine's Day episode, watch Hader lose it as he talks about the must-go clubs for lovers. He cracks up as he describes a club "built on a dare by 90-year-old club promoter Fooji Howser, M.D." And again he can't keep it together when he explains "Jewpids" to Seth Meyers: "Jewish cupids ... 'I just want you to meet someone nice and settle down.'" After about the third or fourth time breaking character in a Stefon sketch, Hader recounted to NPR how he apologized to Lorne Michaels, telling him he knew it wasn't professional. "Bill," Hader recalled Michaels replying, "if what you're saying isn't funny, then it's a problem. But what you're saying is really funny." Michaels also helped put Hader at ease, telling the cast member after about four seasons, "You know you can work here as long as you want." Hader was on the show for eight gut-busting seasons of comedy. As Stefon would say, that comedian had "everything." – Claudine Zap (@zapkidd)

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