Comedian/actress and Saturday Night Live alum Jan Hooks has died today at the age of 57. No details were released about the cause of death, but it was said she was battling a “serious illness.”
Hooks joined SNL in 1986 and was a regular on the show until 1991. She’s probably best known as 1/2 of the singing duo with Nora Dunn, The Sweeney Sisters. Hooks was also an impressionist of many a celebs and politicians on the show including Hillary Clinton, Nancy Regan, Sinead O’Connor, and Jodie Foster. Her class of cast members being the likes of Phil Harman, Victoria Jackson, Dana Carvey, Jon Lovitz, Dennis Miller, and Kevin Nealon.
After Hooks left SNL she jumped into the sitcom world for the final seasons of Designing Women, followed by a recurring role in 3rd Rock From The Sun where she earned an Emmy nomination. Hooks was later given the nod from funny SNL women after her when she was given parts in 30 Rock.
Before SNL Hooks worked in dinner theaters and joined the New Wits End Players comedy troupe where she worked on the variety show Tush. Hooks developed a following and moved to LA in the early 80’s and starred in movies like Wildcats and Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure before auditioning for SNL in 1985. Her audition didn’t go to well, she admittedly flubbed it and was at one point thought to be too old for the cast. However, 1985 was the big shakeup year for SNL and Hooks was brought onto the cast a year after in 1986.