The Friends star who almost went to SNL instead

Alec Baldwin

Kate McKinnon and Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

FORMER Saturday Night Live cast members Adam Sandler and Rob Schneider shared a few juicy behind-the-scenes secrets from the show’s 90s heyday in a new interview with Howard Stern.

Schneider and Sandler, who both became SNL cast members in 1990 and stayed with the show for four and five years respectively, told Stern about the funniest guest hosts they encountered, the Friends star who almost landed an SNL gig — and the one sketch so controversial it never made it to air.

The best guest hosts

Christina Applegate (left) was so good she could’ve been a main cast member — but preferred Married With Children money. Picture: Columbia Tristar/Fotos International/Getty Images

Christina Applegate (left) was so good she could’ve been a main cast member — but preferred Married With Children money. Picture: Columbia Tristar/Fotos International/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images

“Anybody who was on a sitcom who would come on the show would be better than all of us. Christina Applegate, I remember thinking: How come she’s better than us?” said Sandler, explaining that sitcom actors’ comic timing and knack for remembering dialogue made them ideal candidates for the show.

“I said to her, you’re so good, you should come over here and do the show [fulltime],” recalled Schneider. The Married With Children star’s response was perfect.

“She said, ‘Yeah, you know, you guys make a nickel and I make like 100 grand a week, so …”

A Friendly near-miss

Jennifer Aniston went with Friends — and it made her career.

Jennifer Aniston went with Friends — and it made her career.Source:Supplied

The TV show Friends made its debut in 1994 and went on to be the biggest sitcom of the 90s — but it almost didn’t have a Rachel, with Jennifer Aniston being courted for a fulltime role at SNL at the same time.

“Aniston they wanted as a cast member, when we were there. It was at the same time as NBC wanted her for Friends that there was talk about her being in the cast. She went to Friends, and we were all like ‘Well I don’t know about that,’” said Sandler with a chuckle.

Too much for TV

Yeah guys, we can’t imagine this sketch ever making it to TV. Picture: AFP

Yeah guys, we can’t imagine this sketch ever making it to TV. Picture: AFPSource:AFP

Asked if they could recall any sketches that were too rude to make it onto the show, Sandler said there were too many to count — but Schneider immediately offered one example. Given the AIDS crisis was still spiralling out of control during the pair’s early 90s SNL stint, it’s not hard to see why Schneider’s sketch idea was shot down:

“James Bond, HIV. [adopts Sean Connery voice] This pen is a rocket launcher. It can also turn into a Geiger counter. But … I would’ve given anything if it had turned into a condom.

“The following people need to get tested: Moneypenny. Goldfinfger. Octopussy. Oddjob.”

Friends in high places

Director Steven Spielberg, with his Schindler’s List Oscars, watched Sandler on SNL to take a break from the devastating subject matter of the film.

Director Steven Spielberg, with his Schindler’s List Oscars, watched Sandler on SNL to take a break from the devastating subject matter of the film.Source:News Corp Australia

When Sandler started performing his own comedy songs on SNL, Hollywood took notice — he even got a call from Steven Spielberg.

“Someone gave him my number and he left a nice message. He was making Schindler’s List … he left a message saying that making the movie was very depressing and very difficult for him, and that [watching me] would help him laugh. I thought, when’s that call gonna pay off? But nothing happened.”

Alec Baldwin is nailing it as Trump

Alec Baldwin (at left) is enjoying a golden streak on SNL for his portrayal of President Donald Trump. Picture: Saturday Night Live

Alec Baldwin (at left) is enjoying a golden streak on SNL for his portrayal of President Donald Trump. Picture: Saturday Night LiveSource:Supplied

“The guy is ridiculous. He is so fearless out there — I was on the show three-and-a-half years and never felt as loose and fearless as Alec Baldwin. But he was always a badass out there,” says Sandler of Baldwin, who has hosted SNL a record seventeen times.