Professors of Entertainment Contest: A conversation with Kenan Thompson

Photo courtesy of Thompson's management.

Muktaru Jalloh
Online News Editor

Photo courtesy of Thompson's management.
Photo courtesy of Thompson’s management.

As a part of their Professors of Entertainment contest promotion, NBCUniversal and Comcast Xfinity are giving one lucky college a great opportunity: a guest lecture from Saturday Night Live’s own, Kenan Thompson.

A veteran actor and comedian, Kenan Thompson has been featured in over 20 films and has starred in two of his own television series, “All-That” (1994) and “Kenan & Kel” (1996). For over 20 years, Thompson has maintained quite a successful career and broken barriers as well. With his 13th season on SNL forthcoming, Thompson is now the longest running African-American and eldest cast member on the legendary sketch-comedy show.

Unlike many child stars, Thompson has been able to push past his teenage success and solidify his career in Hollywood as an adult actor and comedian. During a conference call interview, Thompson credited his current position for the change.

“Saturday Night Live was the most amazing factor in that bridge,” Thompson said. “From role to role, everyone was unsure if I was a proven actor or not. When Saturday Night came around, it showed that there were no more questions about it. I give them a lot of credit for that.”

Thompson’s time with SNL has been quite the ride and something he is extremely grateful for.

“It’s been amazing from Day 1. We work every single week and it’s the most amazing challenge I’ve ever experienced,” Thompson said.

In the upcoming lecture, Thompson will be “The professor of the day” and plans to talk to the students about what he’s learned over the years, including his time with SNL.

“The writing phase was something that was new for me. I had to learn how to take my ideas and try to make them make sense to where people in the world can laugh,” Thompson said.

Also, Thompson plans to express to students about hard work, patience and diligence. Born and raised in Atlanta, Thompson’s chances of making it big were slim.

“It was tough coming from Atlanta period, because back then it wasn’t that big of a platform and didn’t have much acting opportunity coming through there,” Thompson said. “But we did take advantage of what did come through there and tried to make the best of it.”

To vote and for more details on the contest, please visit

The new season of Saturday Night Live premieres October 3rd, 2015 at 11:30pm e/t.



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