Issa Rae to host ‘Saturday Night Live’ on Oct. 17

Rae will host the iconic show with musical guest Justin Bieber

Issa Rae is having a moment, despite the coronavirus pandemic.

Rae has been tapped to host Saturday Night Live on Oct. 17, according to multiple sources.

Read More: Issa Rae forms Hoorae media company for TV, film and digital projects

Rae, 35, is also coming off her most successful Emmy season ever. Her show Insecure garnered eight nods in 2020, winning a technical award for Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing For A Comedy Series for the episode “Lowkey Trying.”

Lowkey "Insecure" Dinner presented by Our Stories to Tell
Issa Rae and Robin Thede attend the Lowkey “Insecure” Dinner presented by Our Stories to Tell at Firewood on January 25, 2020 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for HBO)

She was also recognized with a nomination as an executive producer on HBO’s A Black Lady Sketch Show with Robin Thede.

Rae will host the show with Justin Bieber as the musical guest. SNL has returned to taping live with a restricted studio audience and the appropriate coronavirus protocols, though some have questioned whether it should.

“We did a show with anthrax in the building. We did a show after 9/11,” longtime SNL head Lorne Michaels, who has produced the show since 1975 told NBC News. “That’s what we’ve always done. To our audience, it’s really important we show up.”

Michaels revealed that cast members and guests will wear masks “until the red light goes on.” The red light signals the start of taping.

TV and movie production has slowly come back to life as showrunners like Tyler Perry have isolated cast and crew and included regular testing to ensure there are no outbreaks.

Perry has the advantage of owning Tyler Perry Studios, a fully functioning film and TV production facility complete with housing.

Read More: ‘Queen Sugar’ will cover COVID-19, BLM, and election in 5th season

Chris Rock and Megan Thee Stallion are set as host and musical guest for tonight’s premiere of SNL’s 46th season. Jim Carrey will guest star as Joe Biden and Maya Rudolph is returning as Kamala Harris.

Now that President Trump has contracted the coronavirus, industry observers are wondering how the show can pull off the balance of comedy and compassion for the commander-in-chief. Played by Alec Baldwin, Trump has been a frequent subject of mocking skits.

Have you subscribed to theGrio’s podcast “Dear Culture”? Download our newest episodes now!