Vanessa Bayer


Vanessa Bayer hit the streets after leaving Saturday Night Live—and it was by choice.

The Emmy nominee took to the mean streets of New York City to ask men and women about birth control for a new Allergan ad campaign titled Know Your Birth Control to raise awareness about, you guessed it, birth control.

"I'm very excited about it. I think it's important for women to sort of know what misconceptions are out there about birth control, if they have any, to get them answered, and to feel empowered to talk to their doctors and healthcare providers about that kind of stuff. I think it's a really important thing for women to have the correct information about birth control," Bayer told E! News.

She ventured out prepared for the unsuspecting citizens to hit her with their own questions, specifically about Saturday Night Live.

"Yeah. I'm going to try and steer the conversation toward birth control, but, you know, there's a lot of overlap. I'm going to try and find some kind of joke to bridge them," she told us before shooting the spots.

Maybe SNL is a form of birth control for some people? "Gosh, I mean, I haven't had a date in quite a while, so maybe," Bayer told us. "Does that make sense? Sorry!"

Read on to find out what Bayer had to say about leaving the NBC sketch series and what's next for her. This interview was conducted before Bayer was nominated for an Emmy.

Vanessa Bayer, Saturday Night Live


Can you tell me about your decision to leave SNL?
It was such a wonderful place to work. I had such a time there, but it just felt like it was time. Everyone was just so nice about it. I had such a wonderful last season. I just felt like it was time for someone else to…I guess entertain America. [Laughs.]

What are you working on?
I'm doing a movie [Ibiza] in Eastern Europe. I'm leaving in about a month for that and then we'll see after that. I'm excited to do some new things and of course I already miss SNL. They have such a wonderful group over there. I'm just excited to watch SNL and do some new things. I'm sorry, that was very repetitive.

Are you looking at TV projects? Would you do a sitcom/comedy?
Yeah, I'm sort of open to anything at this point. I'm going to see where things land. I'm not sure exactly what's next.

That must be thrilling and nerve-racking because for seven years you had a set thing to do.
Totally, yeah. And I'm kind of an aggressive planner, so I think it's good for me.

You talked about this last season of SNL and right at the end you introduced Dawn Lazarus, which is probably one of my favorite characters I've ever seen on SNL even though she's only had two episodes. How did that character come about?
I wrote it with this amazing writer Jeremy Beiler. We tried it a bunch of different ways, I first thought she'd be a host of a game show, that was a very intense game show, like a very serious game show. And then that kept getting cut after dress rehearsal; so then we tried it as a weather woman. I think Colin Jost said why don't you guys try it as an Update feature, so we did, and it worked. We're so happy with it. It actually felt that she was a weather woman all along.

Just the way she speaks.
Yeah, it was fun to do, it was fun to take those kind of like weather tropes that they do, like they're so cheery and stuff. It was fun to do that with kind of like words that weren't words. Just saying nonsense, it was really fun.

Rachel from Friends is another favorite. How did you perfect that impression?
Oh, that's so nice. I just think I watched so much Friends. It's still such a good show. After watching hours and hours of it I think you just learn it.

I know Jennifer Aniston did it alongside you, and you guys did Office Christmas Party together—did she comment on it then?
I think we talked about it for the first time when we were doing Office Christmas Party together. She was so sweet about it, and she was so nice—she's just such a good sport. She's so great. She told me she liked it. And then to get to do it with her, alongside her on SNL, it was a thrill. It was one of my favorite thing I've gotten to do there. It was so fun and she's so great.


Vanessa Bayer, Saturday Night Live


This would be hiatus for you right now, but do you find yourself thinking about sketches for some of these characters?
That's interesting. Not that frequently, but I do sometimes run into people that I'm like, ‘Oh that would be such a great character, like that type of person,' or whatever. I always would like to save the writing until our writing night, I do have to say I always kept that stuff until the last minute. I guess I'm a planner in life, but not in writing. Is that a great quote or what?

Do you have a sketch that you didn't get to do that you want to do on Late Night With Seth Meyers?
Um, yes. I almost don't want to tell you what it is because I mentioned it to Seth several times, that I want to do it. I'll say this, it has a rap about birds in it. Maybe that's why it never made it in? It's something that [Taran Killiam] and I did. I'm giving you too much already.

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