Rosie O’Donnell has volunteered as tribute in the Democratic Party’s — and Saturday Night Live’s — war on Stephen Bannon, the controversial former Brietbart editor currently serving as President Trump’s chief strategist.
Calls to cast O’Donnell as Bannon on Saturday Night Live went viral on social media Monday night, as lefty Twitter users cracked jokes about how much the casting would likely drive the President Trump — who seems to consider O’Donnell an arch enemy of sorts — into a rage.
Melissa McCarthy’s inspired take on White House press secretary Sean Spicer dominated headlines ever since the show aired over the weekend. Adding to the fire, Politico.com late Monday published a story that had sources close to the White House saying that insiders were most upset by the fact that Spicer was played by a woman. Those accounts were not confirmed by NBC News.
In an exclusive interview Tuesday, O’Donnell told NBC News that she’s game for the role: “If asked, of course I would.”
“Alec is amazing, Melissa McCarthy was perfect. It’s a funny idea. But SNL knows what they are doing,” said O’Donnell.
“I have hosted the show in my youth,” she added. “Quite an honor. I loved it.”
It’s unclear whether SNL producers, who declined to comment in response to an NBC News request, plan to add Rosie O’Donnell to the ever-expanding list of guest stars whose scathing parodies of the Trump administration have caused the President to lash out on Twitter.
Currently, Bannon is played by cast member Mikey Day in a “Grim Reaper” outfit.
But it would seem to create the perfect trifecta, with Alec Baldwin’s Trump and now McCarthy’s Spicer already annoying the White House. On Monday, Spicer appeared to be a good sport about the parody, saying McCarthy’s impression was “funny” although he believed she “could dial back” her raging portrayal of his press conferences.
In contrast to Spicer, President Trump has repeatedly attacked SNL, clearly bugged by Baldwin’s spray-tanned Trumped-up caricature. In one of a series of tweets attacking the show, Trump called it “unwatchable” and “not funny,” before ending with his characteristic punctuation, “sad.”
Trump has also spent considerable energy going after O’Donnell, on and off Twitter. The feud between the two television stars goes back to at least 2006, when O’Donnell criticized Trump on the view and he immediately told People magazine that she was a “loser.” He would later echo the sentiment in dozens of tweets about O’Donnell — criticizing everything from her former fiance to her weight and appearance.
And in the infamous Aug. 2015 Republican primary debate hosted by Megyn Kelly, when she listed various insulting words Trump had called various women, he interrupted to retort, “Only Rosie O’Donnell,” — which drew laughs from the crowd but wasn’t true.
O’Donnell isn’t alone, at least: Trump has also fixated on other female celebrities like Kelly and Kristen Stewart. Stewart’s opening monologue on SNL last Saturday centered on the President’s apparent obsession with her relationship woes with ex-boyfriend Robert Pattison. Trump’s tweets about the Twilight-starring couple were roundly mocked.
NBC News asked the White House for Bannon’s comment regarding the potential casting, but did not immediately receive a response.