Julia Louis-Dreyfus Says “SNL” Was “Sexist” and “Brutal” During Her Time There

The actress was a cast member on the show from 1982 to 1985

Actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus poses in the press room at the 69th annual Primetime Emmy Awards at Microsoft Theater on September 17, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
Actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus poses in the press room at the 69th annual Primetime Emmy Awards at Microsoft Theater on September 17, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
By Bonnie Stiernberg / December 10, 2019 9:48 am

Plenty of Saturday Night Live alumni go on to bigger and better things after their time on the show, but with her classic performances on Seinfeld and Veep, there’s an argument to be made that Julia Louis-Dreyfus went on to some of the biggest and best. And at a recent fundraiser, the actress told Stephen Colbert that her time on the show wasn’t exactly enjoyable thanks to the “sexist” environment there.

“There were plenty of people on the show who were incredibly funny,” Louis-Dreyfus, who was a cast member on SNL from 1982 to 1985, said. ” [But] I was unbelievably naive and I didn’t really understand how the dynamics of the place worked. It was very sexist, very sexist.”

She also made note of the show’s drug culture, pointing out drug use among staffers and cast members was rampant. “People were doing crazy drugs at the time,” she told the New Jersey Performing Arts Center crowd. “I was oblivious. I just thought, ‘Oh wow, he’s got a lot of energy.'”

“I don’t know how anybody could work stoned,” she added. “It was a pretty brutal time, but it was a very informative time for me.”

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