POSTED: Tuesday, June 5, 2012 - 6:00am
UPDATED: Tuesday, June 5, 2012 - 6:04am
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS (CNN) — "Saturday Night Live" is bidding farewell to another beloved cast member as Andy Samberg confirms that he's not returning to the sketch comedy show.
The NBC series confirmed the news on its Twitter account Friday, posting, "... #Samberg officially not returning next season," along with a link to one of Samberg's classic skits with Justin Timberlake.
The 33-year-old actor told the New York Times that same day that this is "an incredibly strange and emotional time in my life."
The decision to depart was "one of the hardest ... I've ever made," Samberg added, noting that Kristen Wiig, who had her own goodbye segment on "SNL's" season finale last month, helped him make the choice.
"She kept saying it just feels like it's her time," Samberg told the NYT. "I connect with that. Something about it just feels like it's the moment."
Reflecting on his seven season run with MTV, he said he'll certainly miss the people he worked with.
"['SNL' is] like, going to war or being on a sports team," Samberg said. "It's just everyone working towards this common goal at full speed. When you lift your head up and go out into the world, you kind of realize, you'll always be nicely shell-shocked in a way that only the people who did it with you can understand. I'll definitely miss having such an amazing outlet and being able to do comedy on such a storied show that everyone pays attention to."
The actor's already lining up other projects, as he'll star alongside Adam Sandler in the upcoming "That's My Boy," which opens June 15.