'Saturday Night Live': Fred Armisen confirms exit after 11 years
But unlike fellow departing cast member Bill Hader, no one from NBC or "SNL" officially confirmed Armisen's exit. At least until Armisen commented on the departure in an interview that ran Friday on the comedy website Splitsider.
"I think it's clear," Armisen says about his farewell sketch on the show in character as British rocker Ian Rubbish [video below]. "I didn't do any kind of official announcement, but I really felt like it was obvious. An ending that was a love letter to all the music I grew up with, and also to my friends and to 'SNL' and to Lorne and to the cast. There was a lot of emotion attached to it, but it was a very positive emotion."
Armisen reveals he felt it was a "very healthy good time" to leave and that he wanted to spend more time on his acclaimed IFC sketch comedy series "Portlandia."
"'Portlandia' started to pull me away more and more, schedule-wise, and I just felt like it'd be nice to focus on it a little more and go into the fall a bit more with shooting," he says. "So it was because of that. And also it was just a feeling."
"Saturday Night Live" will also lose head writer and "Weekend Update" host Seth Meyers next season when he transitions to host of "Late Night." And the possibility remains that longtime cast member Jason Sudeikis will leave the show as well, although no official announcement about his future has been made.
Watch Armisen's farewell sketch -- featuring guests including "Portlandia" co-star Carrie Brownstein -- below: