The decision to drop the country singer ahead of SNL‘s Oct. 10 broadcast comes after numerous TikTok videos surfaced that showed him unmasked and fraternizing in crowded bars in Tuscaloosa, Ala. this past weekend. The late-night sketch series is currently operating under strict COVID guidelines implemented by the state of New York to ensure the safety of all involved.
Wallen broke the news himself in a video posted to Instagram on Wednesday, saying: “My actions from this past weekend were pretty short-sighted, and have obviously affected my long-term goals and my dreams… I respect the show’s decision because I know I put them in jeopardy, and I take ownership for this. I’d like to apologize to SNL, to my fans, to my team for bringing me these opportunities, and I let them down.” (An NBC source confirms to TVLine that Wallen will not be performing on SNL this week.)
Wallen, who competed on Season 6 of NBC’s The Voice, has had two consecutive top 10 country singles this year: “7 Summers” and “More Than My Hometown.” He is currently up for two Billboard Music Awards (Top Country Song and Top Country Album), as well as well as a CMT Music Award (for Male Video of the Year).
As previously reported, comedian Bill Burr is set to host Saturday Night Live this weekend; no word yet on whether a new musical guest will replace Wallen. (UPDATE: Jack White has been tapped as new musical guest.) The following week, on Oct. 17, Insecure‘s Issa Rae will oversee hosting duties, while Justin Bieber will serve as musical guest.
SNL returned on Oct. 3 with host Chris Rock and a performance by Megan Thee Stallion. The Season 46 opener — which also featured Jim Carrey’s debut as Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden — marked SNL‘s second-largest premiere audience in 12 years. (TVLine readers gave Carrey’s impression an average grade of “B+,” while the episode itself earned a “C-.”)
Do you agree with SNL‘s decision to sack Wallen? Watch the aforementioned TikTok videos below, then hit the comments with your reactions.
I’ve seen like 87 tiktoks similar to this one. Morgan Wallen belongs to the streets. pic.twitter.com/LNeZVc3v6v
— 🍂Tyne🍂 (@RyleeTWing) October 5, 2020
Let us take a moment to recognize that Morgan Wallen is a total dirt bag. Most of the girls in this video are 19 years old. As a reminder, he is 27 with a baby.
— Heather Kirk (@heatherkirkk) October 4, 2020