Entertainment

The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s  

Best of SNL
1k votes 75 voters 153 items

List Rules Vote up the people who did the best job as hosts of SNL from 1980 through 1989.

The 1980s started out rough for Saturday Night Live, but they rode the decade through and celebrated their 15th anniversary in before the '80s ended.  Even with over a dozen hosts appearing multiple times, there were over 150 hosts in the '80s. If you can't remember everybody who got to open the show, then refresh your memory with this list of the people who were hosts from 1980 through 1989, ranked from best SNL '80s hosts to worst SNL '80s hosts.

One of the people who took on the role of host the most often in the '80s was actor Danny DeVito, who hosted four times and tied with comedian and frequent host Steve Martin for most times hosting SNL in the 1980s. Tom Hanks was close behind, hosting Saturday Night Live three times that decade and even using his monologue in the 15th-anniversary episode to hint about upcoming changes to the opening act.

Just like the seasons and episodes themselves, the Saturday Night Live hosts of the 1980s range from great to grueling. Vote up the actors, musicians, and comedians who did the best job at hosting SNL in the '80s.

list ordered by
1
Tom Hanks is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
The Da Vinci Code, Forrest Gump, Saving Private Ryan
Thomas Jeffrey "Tom" Hanks is an American film actor, director, voice-over artist, writer and film producer. Hanks worked in television and family-friendly comedies before achieving ...more
2
Steve Martin is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
The Jerk, ¡Three Amigos!, Bowfinger
Stephen Glenn "Steve" Martin is an American comedian, actor, musician, writer, and producer. Martin came to public notice as a writer for the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, and later ...more
3
Harry Anderson is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
It, Night Court, She's Having a Baby
Harry Laverne Anderson is an American actor, writer, director and magician. He is best known for the role of Judge Harry Stone on the 1984-1992 television series Night Court. In addition to ...more
4
Michael McKean is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
This Is Spinal Tap, Planes, Trains & Automobiles
Michael John McKean is an American actor, comedian, writer, composer and musician well known for his portrayal of Squiggy's friend, Leonard "Lenny" Kosnowski, on the sitcom Laverne ...more
5
Olivia Newton-John is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Grease, Face/Off, Olivia Down Under
Olivia Newton-John, AO, OBE is an English-born Australian singer, songwriter, and actress. She is a four-time Grammy award winner who has amassed five No. 1 and ten other Top Ten Billboard Hot ...more
6
John Madden is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Shakespeare in Love, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, The Debt
John Earl Madden is a former American football player in the National Football League, a former Super Bowl-winning head coach with the Oakland Raiders in the American Football Conference of the ...more
7
John Candy is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
SCTV, Spaceballs, Planes
John Franklin Candy was a Canadian actor and comedian. Candy rose to fame as a member of the Toronto branch of The Second City and its related Second City Television series and through his ...more
8
Jeff Bridges is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
The Big Lebowski, Iron Man, True Grit
Jeffrey Leon "Jeff" Bridges is an American actor, singer, and producer. He comes from a well-known acting family and began his televised acting in 1958 as a child with his father, ...more
9
Angie Dickinson is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Police Woman, Rio Bravo, Dressed to Kill
Angie Dickinson is an American actress who has appeared in more than 50 films and starred on television as Sergeant Leann "Pepper" Anderson in the successful 1970s series Police
10
Blythe Danner is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Meet the Parents, Meet the Fockers, The Lucky One
Blythe Katherine Danner is an American actress. She is known for her portrayal as Will Truman's mother, Marilyn, in the sitcom Will & Grace and for her role in the 2000 comedy hit Meet the ...more
11
Bob Uecker is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Bob Uecker Major League, Mr. Belvedere, Homeward Bound II: Lost in San Francisco
Robert George "Bob" Uecker is a retired American Major League Baseball player, later a sportscaster, comedian and actor. Uecker was given the title of "Mr. Baseball" by TV ...more
12
Flip Wilson is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Uptown Saturday Night, Skatetown, U.S.A.
Flip Wilson was an African American comedian and actor. In the early 1970s, Wilson hosted his own weekly variety series, The Flip Wilson Show. The series earned Wilson a Golden Globe and two ...more
13
Garry Shandling is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
What Planet Are You From?, The Larry Sanders Show, Over the Hedge
Garry Emmanuel Shandling is an American comedian, actor, writer, producer, and director. He is best known for his work in It's Garry Shandling's Show and The Larry Sanders Show. Shandling began ...more
14
Johnny Cash is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Django Unchained, Walk the Line, Dawn of the Dead
John R. "Johnny" Cash was a singer-songwriter, actor, and author, widely considered one of the most influential American musicians of the 20th century. Although primarily remembered as ...more
15
Lauren Hutton is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Lauren Hutton and..., American Gigolo, Once Bitten
Lauren Hutton is an American model and actress. Hutton notably appeared on the cover of Vogue magazine on 28 occasions and earned more than any other model within a decade-long period.
16
Rhea Perlman is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Cheers, Matilda, The Sessions
Rhea Jo Perlman is an American actress, best known for her role as Carla Tortelli in the sitcom Cheers, for which she won four Emmy Awards.
17
Robert Hays is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Airplane!, Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey, Airplane II: The Sequel
Robert Hays is an American actor, perhaps best known for his role in the film Airplane! and for his role as Robert Seaver in Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey.
18
Robert Wagner is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Hart to Hart, Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery
Robert John Wagner, Jr. is an American actor of stage, screen, and television, best known for starring in the television shows Switch and Hart to Hart. He also had a recurring role as Teddy ...more
19
Sid Caesar is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Grease, It's a Mad, Mad
Isaac Sidney "Sid" Caesar was an American comic actor and writer, best known for the pioneering 1950s live television series Your Show of Shows, a 90-minute weekly show watched by 60 ...more
20
Ted Danson is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Cheers, Saving Private Ryan, Becker
Edward Bridge "Ted" Danson III is an American actor, author, and producer, well known for his role as lead character Sam Malone in the sitcom Cheers, and his role as Dr. John Becker on ...more
21
Teri Garr is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Tootsie, Dumb & Dumber
Terry Ann "Teri" Garr is an American actress and dancer best known for her film roles in Young Frankenstein; Close Encounters of the Third Kind; Oh, God!; Mr. Mom; After Hours; The ...more
22
Matthew Broderick is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Lion King, Godzilla
Matthew Broderick is an American actor who, among other roles, played the title character in the comedy Ferris Bueller's Day Off, voice of the Adult Simba in the Disney animated film The Lion ...more
23
Robin Williams is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Good Will Hunting, Dead Poets Society, Jumanji
Robin McLaurin Williams was an American actor and comedian. Starting as a stand-up comedian in San Francisco and Los Angeles in the mid-1970s, he is credited with leading San Francisco's comedy ...more
24
Bob Newhart is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
Newhart, The Bob Newhart Show, Elf
George Robert "Bob" Newhart is an American stand-up comedian and actor. Noted for his deadpan and slightly stammering delivery, Newhart came to prominence in the 1960s when his album ...more
25
Danny DeVito is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Batman Returns, L.A. Confidential
Daniel Michael "Danny" DeVito, Jr. is an American actor, producer and director. He first gained prominence for his portrayal of taxi dispatcher Louie De Palma on Taxi, for which he won ...more