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'Saturday Night Live' adding two African-American female writers

Jan. 8, 2014 at 1:56 PM

NEW YORK, Jan. 8 (UPI) -- Two African-American women have joined the writing team of "Saturday Night Live" in New York, the Hollywood Reporter said.

NBC announced this week it had hired Sasheer Zamata, an African-American comedian, as a featured player on the sketch comedy series. Her first episode will be Jan. 18.

THR said Wednesday LaKendra Tookes and Leslie Jones will be part of the writing staff starting Monday.

The three women were discovered during showcases for black, female comedians held in New York and Los Angeles after "SNL" came under fire for the lack of diversity in its cast, THR said.

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