Jason Sudeikis trades TV for film with ‘We’re the Millers’

After eight years on the air at “Saturday Night Live,” Jason Sudeikis says he’s calling it quits.
(Dana Edelson / Associated Press)

TV’s loss is moviedom’s gain.

At least, that was Jason Sudeikis’ message to a “Late Night With David Letterman” audience Thursday, when the “Saturday Night Live” stalwart announced that he’s chucking his television day job of the last decade in pursuit of big-screen glory.

“I’m definitely done,” Sudeikis told Letterman of his “SNL” run. “I’m not coming back in the fall.”

The writer-actor went on to muse about applying his creative mojo concocting short bits for “Saturday Night Live” toward the motion picture M.O. “Can I make this sketch idea last 90 minutes and turn it into a movie?” a mustachio-ed Sudeikis wondered aloud, his voice booming into a shout, mouth affixed with a grin.


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Sudeikis’ announcement comes as no surprise to NBC, tactically coinciding with his co-starring role in the Warner Bros. comedy “We’re the Millers” (in theaters Aug. 9). The movie finds Sudeikis playing a bumbling marijuana dealer who masquerades as a milquetoast family man (alongside Jennifer Anniston as a stripper pretending to be his wife, with Emma Roberts and Will Poulter rounding out his dysfunctional ad hoc family) to smuggle a gigantic load of weed from Mexico in an oversize RV.

Sudeikis’ TV 23-skidoo arrives at a transitional moment for “SNL,” announced on the heels of departures by fellow cast-mates Fred Armisen and Bill Hader (as well as Andy Samberg last year). But for anyone who has kept tabs on Sudeikis – who memorably telegraphed Mitt Romney and Joe Biden, in addition to a constellation of straight men and dads, on the show – his movie move comes as no surprise.

After notching character parts in movie comedies including “What Happens in Vegas,” “Semi-Pro” and “The Bounty Hunter” for the past half-dozen years, Sudeikis came into his own as a leading man, co-starring alongside Owen Wilson in the Farrelly brothers’ bawdy infidelity romp “Hall Pass” in early 2011. Then Sudeikis broke through later that year with the surprise hit “Horrible Bosses.”


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He attempts to join a long line of “SNL” refugees including Adam Sandler, Eddie Murphy and Tina Fey, who parlayed their small screen late-night berth on the show for movie mega-stardom. Question is, will Sudeikis’ career go more in the direction of Will Ferrell or Joe Piscopo?


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Twitter: @__chrislee


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