Many people hoped Joe Biden’s selection of California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate would ensure Maya Rudolph’s continued presence on “Saturday Night Live” for the next four to eight years.
But it may not be a sure thing, according to the actor herself ― though she remains hopeful.
Rudolph’s performance as the senator on “SNL” earned her an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series, but she still hasn’t heard any firm confirmation that the show wants her to play Harris this season (and beyond).
Instead, show producer Lorne Michaels sent her something slightly more cryptic.
“He sent me a GIF of myself, as Kamala, in sunglasses, sipping a cocktail and saying, “Oh no.” That really made me laugh,” Rudolph told The Hollywood Reporter.
Rudolph admits she didn’t have a Kamala impression before being invited to play her on “SNL” earlier this year, but she did have a resemblance.
“After a while, it was sort of like what happened with Tina Fey,” Rudolph said. (Fey famously played 2008 vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin on the show.) “There were enough people that said, ‘OK, you look like her. You’re going to get a call like any day now.’ She’s got such an amazing personality and is so charismatic. That part’s really easy, because it’s fun to embody the joy of her.”
She said the key to her version of Harris is to think of her like “a cool mom or like a fun aunt.”
She elaborated: “She’s cool, but she’s also responsible. So what does that look like? I didn’t really know exactly how to do her, but I kept going back to the idea of those parents that are like, ‘You kids can smoke weed, but you have to do it at my house.’”
“I’m not saying that’s Kamala!,” Rudolph added. “But that’s the feeling: cool but there are definitely rules at her house.”