“Saturday Night Live” is adding two female cast members, an NBC source confirmed to Access Hollywood.
The new members are comediennes Michaela Watkins (pictured at right) (“The New Adventures of Old Christine”) and Abby Elliott (“King of the Hill”).
New York Magazine’s Vulture blog was the first to report the news on Wednesday, based on a Twitter post from media blogger Rachel Sklar. NBC made the official announcement on Thursday.
Abby, the daughter of Chris Elliott, is the first child of a former cast member to be hired in the show’s 34-season history. She’s a veteran of the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in LA — which was founded by “SNL’s” Amy Poehler — while Michaela got her start with the Groundlings, the group that’s launched many an “SNL” alum, including Will Ferrell and Maya Rudolph. Proving her “SNL” heritage, Abby trained with the Groundlings as well.
According to “SNL” star Bill Hader, audiences won’t have to wait to see them in action.
“Two women, very funny ladies from LA, just started today,” he told Access on Wednesday night at an event at the Museum of the Moving Image in New York honoring Ben Stiller. “So yeah, they’ll be on this Saturday.”
The pair will be filling the gap left by Amy, the popular “Weekend Update” anchor who left the show recently to give birth to son Archie Arnett. When she returns from maternity leave, Amy will be working with the creators of “The Office” on a new sitcom for NBC.
Despite the short notice, Bill told Access he thought the new performers would be ready for Saturday.
“They were just hilarious, their auditions were really funny and they’re just really good,” he said.
The November 15 show will be hosted by Paul Rudd (“Role Models”) with musical guest Beyonce.