In a New York Times article highlighting the illustrious after-parties that have made “Saturday Night Live” famous, it was also revealed that the show begins with around 40-50 sketches per episode before winding up to airtime reduced to only about 8 sketches. That leaves a lot of material on the floor of the editing room, so to speak.
According to former Saturday Night Live star Beck Bennett, the hours that go into preparing a show each week can get pretty intense in a 2017 interview with Larry King. When asked how many hours a day he would need to put into preparing sketches, Bennett replied, “It’s changing. Fridays can last 24 hours. So two weeks ago I got up at 6 a.m. and I shot until about 5 a.m. and slept for six hours and then woke up and went to the studio at noon and did the show until 2 a.m..”
So it’s a long, difficult week, ending with more than three quarters of the material being excised from the show. That must make working on Saturday Night Live an emotionally draining process.