'SNL' Tidbits for June 2, 1998

By Sean Bradley

Molly Shannon Joins 'Analyze'

"Saturday Night Live" trouper Molly Shannon has joined Robert De Niro and Billy Crystal in the cast of Warner Bros.' mobster comedy "Analyze This," sources said.

Harold Ramis is directing the picture about a mob boss who undergoes psychiatric therapy. Shooting is set to start this week in New York.

Shannon's bigscreen debut comes this summer with a starring role in Paramount's "A Night at the Roxbury" opposite fellow-"SNL" comic actors Chris Kattan and Will Ferrell.

Nielsen Ratings Good For 1997-98 'SNL' Season

As of "SNL's" second-to-last episode of live telecasts for its 23rd season, the show had seen considerable growth in key adult demographics and total viewers for a second straight year. Compared to its 1995-96 season, the show is up 31 percent in adults 18-49 (an average of 5.9 million viewers in this demo) and 25 percent in total viewers (an average of 8.9 million persons). The high-rated season finale certainly hasn't hurt these statistics -- if anything it has helped them. The David Duchovny-hosted finale, with musical guest Puff Daddy, had a 8.2/21 in the overnight metered market ratings (one of the five most watched episodes of the season). On FOX, "Mad TV" had only a 4.6/10.

Prime-Time Airing of 'SNL Remembers Chris Farley' Fairs Poorly in Nielsens

NBC's one-hour long "SNL Remembers Chris Farley (originally aired February 21, 1998 in hour-and-a-half form) bombed miserably in prime-time Wednesday. National Nielsen ratings show that the Farley tribute pulled a sad 5.5/10 from 8-9 p.m. As a result, NBC ranked fourth in the 8-9:00 p.m. time-slot, behind the one-hour season finale of CBS's "The Nanny" (12.0 rating/22 share), ABC's "The Drew Carrey Show" from 8-8:30 p.m. (7.1/13), followed at 8:30 p.m. by "Dharma & Greg" (7.8/13), and FOX's "Beverly Hills 90210" (7.3/13).

"3rd Rock From the Sun" followed "SNL Remembers Chris Farley" with a much-improved 8.7/14. The season finale of "Working" earned a 7.2/11, and "Law &Order" scored a 9.5/16 from 10-11 p.m. Despite the success of these other NBC programs, the Farley special led NBC to fourth place for the night overall, with a 7.7 rating/13 share.

Norm Macdonald is Everywhere!!!

Norm Macdonald's movie, "Dirty Work," will be previewed tonight on Comedy Central's "Canned Ham" at 10:30 p.m. (featuring interviews with the movie's cast). Macdonald will then make his fourth appearance of the year on "Late Show with David Letterman" tonight at 11:35 p.m. on CBS. Thursday June 4, he'll guest on "LIVE!with Regis and Kathie Lee." Macdonald is also featured in the June issues of Esquire and Maxim magazines.

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