IFC’s new parody of epic TV miniseries, The Spoils Of Babylon, From Funny or Die, boasts a boatload of Saturday Night Live alums behind and in front of the camera: Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig, Matt Piedmont, Andrew Steele, etc. Six, half-hour episodes will premiere on IFC in early 2014. Not surprisingly, the SNL alums got asked, during Winter TV Press Tour 2014, to weigh in on the controversy that erupted this season over the lack of black female cast member on the NBC late-night series. In response to the controversy, Lorne Michaels in the past several days has hired not only a black comedienne for the cast, but also two black female writers.
“If you can give little insight, was this ever really anything? And is this ultimately good for the show, and what it means,” one critic asked the Spoils panel, a little unclearly.
“I always thought [SNL] should have more toddlers” exec producer Matt Piedmont said by way of launching a gag about five-year-old industry writers that fell flat.
“Is this about SNL, or the future of SNL?” wondered exec producer Andrew Steele.
“I……uh….am excited about the new hire,” Kristen Wiig said, hesitantly, looking at the other panelists for support and/or guidance.
“We’re very removed from the show” Steele added, as if that mattered to the critics.
“It’s great,” Wiig said, but without ay real vim, like she was asking a question.
“Congratulations to the people who got hired at SNL, and their diversity,” Steele jumped back in, finally landing a joke that put an end to the discussion.
The Spoils Of Babylon, IFC insists, is a century-spanning saga, chronicling the sexy and dramatic lives of the Morehouse family, led by Jonas Morehouse (Robbins), his daughter Cynthia (Wiig) and her adopted brother Devon (Maguire) who made their fortune in the oil business. The series takes viewers from the oil fields of Texas to boardrooms in New York City, through war torn battlefields and velvet-sheeted bedrooms. Cynthia and Devon’s unbridled and taboo passion for one another cannot be prevented. Add in Cynthia’s evil son Winston (Osment), her put upon husband Chet Halner (Sheen), and Devon’s new love interest Dixie Mellonworth (Alba), and the booze, the pills, more passion, more pills and the heartache, and you have a mercurial potboiler. Then add in illegal arms deals, international espionage, the Shah of Iran (Ferrell), and two US Army Generals (Kilmer, Steve Tom) and it begins to overflow with boiling liquid in a pot on a hot stove that is operational, the network added.