'Saturday Night Live' Adding Diversity to Writing Staff, Two Black Female Writers Join Cast [DETAILS]

  • Richard Conte , Design & Trend Contributor
  • Jan, 09, 2014, 04:32 PM
Saturday Night Live
(Photo : Reuters) NBC's sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live has added two black female writers to the shows writing staff. The two writers were found during last month's auditions that found new cast-member Sasheer Zamata.

In another move toward diversity, "Saturday Night Live" has added two black female writers to its staff, according to The Hollywood Reporter. This comes off the heels of the show's search for a black female cast members.

In fact, the two writers LaKendra Tookes and Leslie Jones, were discovered during the auditions that found new SNL cast member Sasheer Zamata, The Hollywood Reporter said.

"Tookes and Jones were both among the black female comedians who auditioned during showcases held in New York and Los Angeles," after SNL faced "widespread criticism that its new cast lacked diversity."

After the auditions, which were "the first in SNL history to focus exclusively on minority women," Zamata was chosen and will make her debut on Jan. 18 when superstar rapper Drake hosts.

Leslie Jones was an actress and stand-up comedian "who was a finalist for the new cast-member spot," according to the Star Ledger.

Jones has performed at the Comedy Store in Los Angeles, guest-starred in comedies like "The League" and "Sullivan & Son." Her pedigree also includes writing and appearing on Def Comedy Jam, along with having one of her comedy specials broadcast on Showtime. 

Jasmine Tookes is a "former news reporter from Florida who has performed at iO West."

Apparently producers "were impressed with both Tookes and Jones and thought they were talented, smart and funny," but there a no plans for them to join Zamata on screen.

The Hollywood Reporter said that, "a number of SNL writers in the past have transitioned to larger roles," so it is quite possible for that to happen in the future.

These additions to the staff come almost a month before Seth Meyers leaves the sketch show to start out as the host of "Late Night."

Do you think SNL has fixed the diversity problem or do they have more work to do? Sound off below.

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