In 2015, Bernie Sanders announced that he was running for the Democratic nomination for President of the United States. His progressive views and outspoken energy soon earned him many loyal supporters. He wound up finishing the race a close second.
As Bernie Sanders became better known on the campaign trail, many people felt like he reminded them of somebody. Not only did Bernie physically resemble Larry David, but the sound (and volume) of his voice were similar as well. It was hard not to notice.
It wasn't long before Saturday Night Live noticed as well. Just like years earlier, when Tina Fey was drafted to play Sarah Palin, Larry David was drafted to play Bernie Sanders. And the impression was a hit.
Then when Larry David got to host an episode of SNL, Bernie made a guest appearance. And on an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Bernie Sanders showed that he can get in on the act too by displaying his own impression of Larry David.
David explained that Sanders is a "third cousin or something." He said he learned this information while filming an episode of the PBS series Finding Your Roots. And while they are just third cousins, many of the genes they share are considerably obvious.
First, David said that the idea was being planted in the head of SNL producer Lorne MIchaels.. "During the first debate between Bernie and Hillary," David said, "Lorne Michaels got emails and calls during the debate, saying that I should be doing Bernie Sanders."
Meanwhile, David had also watched the debate, when he got a call from agent Ari Emanuel. "Ari Emanuel called me up and said, 'What did you think?'' And every time I watched Bernie Sanders, I would repeat everything that he said, because I know that I can talk like that. So I started talking to Ari, the agent, I started talking to him like Bernie."
Emanuel then suggested to David that he could record himself impersonating Sanders and put it online. David said, "No, I’m not going to do that. That’s not me." But he added, "'You know, it would be a good thing for Saturday Night Live,' not thinking in a million years.”
However, Emanuel thought David as Sanders was a great idea. David said Emanuel "hung up immediately and called Lorne Michaels, then they were both on the phone 10 minutes later." And the rest is history.
From there, Larry David appeared many times as Bernie Sanders on Saturday Night Live. He was on so much that he felt like an honorary cast member, similar to the frequent appearances by Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump during the following season.
15. 'Bern Your Enthusiasm'
Bernie Sanders may not be running for president anymore, but he's still a notable public figure. Which means we may get to see Larry David play him again sometime in the future. But in the meantime, you can enjoy this video of Larry as Bernie parodying his own TV show with the SNL sketch "Bern Your Enthusiasm."