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Comedian Pete Davidson issued a heartfelt message to fans hours before his final show Saturday evening while announcing that he was leaving “Saturday Night Live” after eight years.
Davidson, who does not use social media, revealed through a post from his friend Dave Sirus’ Instagram that he was departing after the season finale over the weekend.
Sirus posted an open letter from Davidson along with a throwback video of the “SNL” veteran sharing a hug with comedian Jerrod Carmichael.
“This video was taken 8 years ago,” Davidson wrote. “Jerrod sent it to me last night and it made me super emotional in the best way. In the video I had just gotten back from doing my very first update and sketch. It’s crazy to think that today I’ll be doing my last one. When I got the show I was 20 years old and I had no idea what I was doing. I still don’t but especially back then.”
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He said when he first joined the show in 2014, he “wasn’t really a sketch performer” and was “just a stand-up” comedian, and that he did not believe he could “keep up or go toe to toe” with the show’s veterans Kenan Thompson and Kate McKinnon.
“So I was super scared at figuring out what I could possibly bring to or do for such a historic, respected show and platform,” Davidson said.
McKinnon, Aidy Bryant and Kyle Mooney are also reported to be leaving after the finale.
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“I figured since I’m a stand-up I’ll just try my stand-up and personal bits on “Weekend Update” as myself and I’m so glad I did,” he continued. “I got to share so much with this audience and literally grow up in front of your eyes. We were together through the good and the bad, the happiest and the darkest of times.”
The comedian, who began dating Kim Kardashian after she hosted the show last October, expressed appreciation for show creator Lorne Michaels and “everyone at ‘SNL,'” saying that he is “so grateful” and “wouldn’t be here without them.”
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“I appreciate you guys always having my back and sticking up for me even when that wasn’t the popular opinion,” he said. “Thank you for always believing in me and sticking by my side even when it seemed comical. Thank you for teaching me life values, how to grow up and for giving me memories that will last a lifetime. SNL is my home. I’m so happy and sad about tonight’s show. For so many reasons I can’t explain.”