Taran Killam, former ‘SNL’ star, says Lorne Michaels wanted cast to ease up on Trump

October 28, 2018 GMT

Actor and former “Saturday Night Live” cast member Taran Killam said the show’s creator and executive producer Lorne Michaels wanted the cast to make President Trump more “likable” in sketches and was very specific about what he allowed members to say about him.

Mr. Killam, who appeared on “SNL” from 2010-2016 and played Mr. Trump on the show until Alec Baldwin took over, told the “I Was There Too” podcast released Tuesday that Mr. Michaels often told the cast not to “vilify” the then-Republican presidential candidate.

″‘He’s like any New York taxi driver. I know him, I’ve seen him around at parties for years and years, and he just says whatever it is he’s thinking, and that’s his thing,’” Mr. Killam recalled Mr. Michaels saying. “You have to find a way in that makes him likable.”

Mr. Killam has been critical of Mr. Trump in the past, saying last year that having him on the show as a host before the Republican primary was something that “grows more embarrassing and shameful as time goes on.”

He said Tuesday that Mr. Michaels, however, treated the future president with the respect he afforded all his guests.

“One of the things I do respect about Lorne is he is a very good host to his guests,” Mr. Killam said.