NEW YORK — Adam Sandler returned to “Saturday Night Live” with a song parodying his departure from the show two decades ago.
Hosting “SNL” for the first time since he was a mainstay cast member, the comedian opened his monologue by saying he told with his family his time on the show — from 1990 to 1995 — was the “best time of his life.”
He told the audience his daughter asked why he left.
“I was fired. I was fired,” Sandler sang. “It was so sad to tell … I tried to call (“SNL” creator) Lorne Michaels but he never called me back.”
The next verse of the song continued: “I think they just hate the Jews. I was fired, not rehired. It made me sad and blue.”
Then came a cameo by fellow “SNL” alumnus Chris Rock, who was on the show from 1990 to 1993.
Sandler asked Rock why he left the show.
“I got fired. I was fired. I was fired by NBC,” Rock sang. “Then I went on ‘In Living Color,’ three weeks later they took it off TV.”
“In Living Color” was an African-American variety show that aired on Fox between 1990 and 1994.
Current “SNL” cast member Pete Davidson then showed up and tried to start singing. Sandler stopped him, pointing out that Davidson had not been fired.
“Be patient cause it’s coming soon,” Sandler said to Davidson.
Sandler crooned the rest of his song.
“It broke my heart to pieces, cause ‘SNL’ was my home. Where can I do my funny voices now? I never felt so alone,” Sandler sang while dipping into his character voice. “NBC said that I was done, then I made over $4 billion at the box office, so I guess you could say I won.”
‘SNL’ pays tribute to Sandler’s characters
Kristen Wiig, Jimmy Fallon and Shawn Mendes all made cameos in one skit that paid tribute to Sandler’s many “SNL” and movie characters.
In the skit, Sandler was at a Sandler family reunion in which his family members accused him of basing his many characters off them. The characters included stuttering Bobby Boucher from “The Waterboy,” soft spoken Nicky from his film “Little Nicky” and the immature Billy from “Billy Madison.”
Sandler himself reprised his “Opera Man” character during the “Weekend Update” segment.
Sandler also had a solo performance onstage paying tribute to his late friend and another “SNL” alumnus Chris Farley, who died in 1997.