Live, From New York… Who Will Play Donald Trump?

All (logical) signs point to a Darrell Hammond reprise.

They say most things get better with age. So perhaps Darrell Hammond, age 59, is indeed the right way to go in two weeks when Saturday Night Live returns with a cold open that will no doubt be connected in some way to 69-year-old presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Last month, Page Six suggested that show announcer Hammond is in the running for a Trump return. The report was published a day after Mediaite resurrected some fun circa-2004 SNL skits, including one in which a plumber played by Trump pays a house call to a Trump played by Hammond.

If Hammond does wind up reprising Trump, will he change it up? The actor offered a clue earlier this year when he spoke to The Washington Post’s Hunter Schwartz:

“I’ve seen such a more energized Trump, a louder Trump, a more passionate Trump,” Hammond said. “He’s more intense right now.”

That kind of tweak could give Hammond the edge on an unlikely new impression competitor. Jimmy Fallon, the Weekend Update anchor who was once urged by Hammond’s Trump to switch to “the onion loaf” hairstyle, has brought a smooth rendition to The Tonight Show.

As we count down to SNL Season 41, the 1999 clip above is a fun one to revisit. Especially since it features fictitious Trump interrupting Pat Buchanan (Chris Parnell) to offer this wall-free Mexico border view:

“Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa! Hold the boat! The Donald employs an army of illegal aliens in his many fine Atlantic City hotels and casinos. Sure, they steal and talk funny, but if they’re fresh off the burrito boat, they’ll work for 15 cents a week. I’ve seen it myself.”

Update (September 20):
Per Deadline’s Nellie Andreeva, the 2015-16 SNL season of Trump will belong to Taran Killam. She also disputes Page Six’s report that Hammond was in the running:

I hear several current cast members auditioned for the role, which went to Killam. Trump had memorably been played on SNL by former cast member Darrell Hammond, who is now the show’s announcer. I hear he was not in consideration for reprising his Trump impersonation and was not among those who auditioned. He will instead bring back his signature SNL character, Bill Clinton.

@hollywoodspin Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.