*Former “Saturday Night Live” cast member Jay Pharoah says he felt grossly underutilized during his six-year run on the NBC comedy show.
Speaking with Hot 97’s Ebro In The Morning, the comedian got candid about his decision to break north for other opportunities.
“If you have multiple people on the cast saying things like ‘you’re so talented, you’re so able, they don’t use you and it’s unfair and it’s making us feel bad,’” Pharoah said. “They put people into boxes. Whatever they want you to do, they expect you to do,” he added. “I’m a little fiery too… I’m not a yes n***a.”
Pharoah, who was the show’s resident Barack Obama impersonator, said he felt the show “gave up on the Obama thing,” which added to speculation about his termination. He is also remembered for his spot-on impersonations of Jay Z, Denzel Washington and Will Smith, among others.
Pharoah says he has no regrets about how he handled his relationship with “SNL” and that there is no bitterness between him and his former exec producer Lorne Michaels. “Ain’t no beef with Lorne… we’re on good graces.”
Not long after his exit, Pharoah booked Jamie Foxx’s half-hour comedy series “White Famous” at Showtime. “I connected with the material immediately.”
Pharoah also spoke in the interview about nearly losing his job for speaking out about the lack of black female cast members.