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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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September 12th, 2014
06:21 PM ET

The Wrap editor: SNL has a ‘diversity deluge’ going on

(CNN) – It was nearly 40 years ago when NBC's "Saturday Night Live" cast member Jane Curtin got something off her chest, so to speak, about getting a less-than-warm reception after she replaced Chevy Chase on the "Weekend Update" desk.

Now, history is in many ways repeating itself on the iconic fake news show.

Cecily Strong, who served as co-anchor on the show for a year, is out. Taking her place is a new cast member, Michael Che.

Che joins Colin Jost, becoming the first African-American behind that desk, and creating Weekend Update's first male anchor duo team.

SNL executive producer Lorne Michaels said he is making the switch because last season the segment "struggled to find an identity."

Last year, the show came also under fire for its lack of diversity. Michaels then added African-American female comedian Sasheer Zamata to the cast. Is this move part of that - acknowledging that critique?

"SNL has a diversity deluge going on," said Sharon Waxman, editor-in-chief and CEO of The Wrap. "Not only did they add a cast member, they've added two writers to the show of color, and now Michael Che."

Che was previously a writer on SNL, then he went on to become a correspondent for Comedy Central's "The Daily Show."

"He talks about race on "The Daily Show" all the time, which is interesting because that's not the role that you do on "SNL" on "Weekend Update." They're delivering the news. Be interesting to see if he brings that into his writing on the show there," said Waxman.

For more of our interview with The Wrap's Sharon Waxman, check out the video above.

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