30 Rock (TV Series 2006–2013) Poster



One of the reasons Jane Krakowski was drawn to the series was because it gave her the chance to sing and dance. Sitcoms today don't usually allow for that - this was the first since Ally McBeal (1997).
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Only Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin appear in every episode.
Alec Baldwin has said that this show is the best job he's ever had.
Influenced by creator Tina Fey's experience while being head-writer for Saturday Night Live (1975).
The show's 22 Emmy nominations in 2009 were the most a comedy show ever received in a single year.
Tina Fey was not originally going to star in the show. However, NBC insisted she appear.
Liz Lemon's catchphrase "I want to go to there" was coined by Tina Fey's daughter Alice.
Jeff Richmond, Fey's husband, composes all of the show's music and also serves as a producer and guest director. He also appears in some episodes as the piano player on "TGS".
With the exception of Jenna, Tina Fey wrote the main parts for the actors playing them.
In her 2011 book "Bossypants," Tina Fey said that during the early years of 30 Rock, Donald Glover was its only black writer. She also said that he was so young that when he started on the writing staff, he was still living in an NYU dorm and working there as a Resident Adviser. Since he came from a large family in Stone Mountain, Georgia, Fey said that Glover was especially good at writing for the character of Kenneth, who was also supposed to be from Stone Mountain. Glover later became a star as an actor on the TV show Community (2009).
Alec Baldwin won the SAG Award for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series every year since the show's inception until 2013, a feat held by no other actor in either drama or comedy. In addition he won another one in 2009 as part of the cast. He was also nominated for the last time in 2014, but failed to win that time, probably because the show ended in January 2013.
Tina Fey wrote Kenneth Parcell with Jack McBrayer in mind to play him.
In the early episodes, it is revealed that Liz Lemon is a one-time Emmy-winner, just like Tina Fey was at the time the show started.
Tracy Morgan had to be written out of a few episodes of season 5, because he was having a kidney transplant.
Jon Hamm auditioned for the role of Jack Donaghy. He would later appear on the show as Dr. Drew Baird.
"Elizabeth" is Tina Fey's real first name.
In 2012 Tina Fey explained the Emmy in Liz Lemon's office: "I've always sort of thought that it's a Daytime Emmy and that perhaps she got it for writing a really specific category, like Best Regional Promo for the show The Mommies (1993) or something like that . . . [Or] for writing jokes for Joy Behar for The View (2001)--it's definitely a Daytime Emmy. It's a local Daytime Emmy."
Tina Fey had to leave Saturday Night Live (1975) in order to appear in the show (the schedules overlapped). Rachel Dratch also left the show at this time, as she was set to play Jenna DeCarlo. After appearing in the first version of the pilot, Dratch was replaced by Jane Krakowski and given bit parts during the first season.
Lee, the costume designer for "TGS", is played by Tom Broecker, who in real life is the costume designer for "30 Rock."
Tina Fey didn't want Liz Lemon to be a single mother because it would have restricted her character. This allowed Liz more freedom, and gave Fey more avenues to explore.
Liz Lemon's office has a framed cover of "Bust" magazine with Amy Poehler reenacting Janet Leigh's shower scene in Psycho (1960). Tina Fey and Poehler are close friends and former cast members on Saturday Night Live (1975).
On December 29, 2006, Nielsen Media Research reported the results of having, for the first time, monitored viewers who use a digital video recorder to record shows for later viewing. According to the Nielsen numbers, "30 Rock" had the fifth-largest increase (viewers who use a DVR to record the show and then watch it within a week of its initial airing). According to Nielsen, the show adds nearly 7.5% to its total audience every week as a result of these "live plus seven" viewers
Season 2 was shorter than Season 1 (15 episodes as opposed to S1's 21) because of the 2007-2008 Writers Guild of America strike.
Jane Krakowski and Cheyenne Jackson both originated the lead roles in the workshop of "Xanadu" for Broadway. Krakowski left the show before it premiered to star in "30 Rock" instead. Jackson decided to leave the show because he did not want to perform without her. He ended up returning when the replacement actor broke his ankle only a short while before the show opened. Both have since appeared on "30 Rock" together, where their close real-life friendship is reversed, with Jenna resenting Jackson's character and he being disgusted by her constant rude behavior.
Tina Fey originally pitched a series about a cable news producer who is forced to produce a show hosted by a right-wing pundit. Rachel Dratch and Alec Baldwin, respectively, would have played the roles, but NBC suggested a show based on her Saturday Night Live (1975) experiences instead.
Tracy Morgan ("Tracy Jordan") and recurring player Rachel Dratch followed creator/star Tina Fey from Saturday Night Live (1975) to create this show. In addition, star Alec Baldwin holds the record for the most times to host "SNL" (as of February 2017, having hosted it for 17 times).
Jenna's name is a play on Janel Moloney (who later guest-starred in the series).
Aside from the main cast and the supporting actors credited at the beginning of each episode (Tracy's entourage and "TGS" employees), the only actors who appeared in every season are Elaine Stritch, Will Arnett, Chris Parnell and Dean Winters.
The show was finally syndicated in 2009, something Tina Fey had always complained about.
In an unusual move for a modern sitcom, the show is shot on (more expensive) film stock rather than in digital.
The awning in front of Liz Lemon's apartment has displayed two different addresses over the course of the show. In some episodes the address is 160 Riverside Drive and in other shows the address is 168 Riverside Drive. The former is the real address of the exterior building shown and it is directly across the street from the exterior building used on Will & Grace. In an audio commentary Tina Fey jokes that they should've shown Eric McCormick (star of Will & Grace) walking out of that building.
Characters Liz and Jenna began "The Girlie Show" at The Second City in Chicago. In 1992 Tina Fey took classes there and in 1994 was invited to join the cast. Her writing partner was Rachel Dratch and their time together inspired the relationship between Liz and Jenna.
The same year that "30 Rock" started airing, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (2006), another show set behind the scenes of a fictional Saturday Night Live (1975)-type show, also premiered. Even though there were many differences between them (including "30 Rock" being a half-hour sitcom while "Studio 60" was an hour-long drama), many critics compared the two shows and engaged in speculation about which one would survive. "Studio 60" was canceled after one season, and creator Aaron Sorkin and former regular Nate Corddry both went on to guest-star on "30 Rock."
In several episodes in season 4 there is a picture of Kristen Wiig on Jack Donaghy's window sill behind his desk.
Season 3 saw an influx of special guest appearances, including Steve Martin, Jennifer Aniston, Oprah Winfrey, Megan Mullally, Jon Hamm, Salma Hayek and Alan Alda.
The professional and personal relationship between Liz Lemon and Jack Donaghy is based in part on Tina Fey's real-life friendship with executive producer Lorne Michaels.
Andrea Martin was offered the role of Margaret Lemon but her commitments to the Broadway musical adaptation of Young Frankenstein (1974) prevented her from appearing. Martin later guest starred as Bonnie Badamath.
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In an episode of season one, Jack mentions watching "Friends" (1994) and makes several references to the show. He made an appearance in Friends as Parker, the overly enthusiastic guy Phoebe goes out with in Season 8
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All the 'alcohol' that Jack is seen drinking is actually ice tea.
Liz says the first line of the series and Kenneth says the last line.
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Jason Sudeikis and James Marsden share the same birthday (September 18) and both played love interests of Liz Lemon.
The title is derived from 30 Rockefeller Plaza, the New York City street address of NBC Universal.
Before Will Forte played Paul, Jenna's boyfriend and Jenna impersonator in later episodes, he appeared in Season 1 Episode 12 "Black Tie" as "Tomas" the assistant to Austrian Prince Gerhardt, played by Paul Ruben. In the episode, he tells Jenna that the Prince wishes to meet her and introduces them.
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Hazel's real name is Richard Drench.
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The show's name is similar to "3rd Rock," the commonly used short title for 3rd Rock from the Sun (1996). At The 64th Annual Golden Globe Awards (2007), Tim Allen mispronounced the show's name as "3rd Rock" when mentioning that Alec Baldwin had been nominated for the Best Actor in a Television Comedy or Musical Award. Both shows featured guest appearances by Elaine Stritch as the mother of one of the main characters.
Other than the obvious (Tina, Tracy, Jason Sudeikis, Rachel Dratch) many SNL alumni were in 30 Rock over the years. To name a few: The late Jan Hooks as Jenna's mother, Verna Maloney, Will Ferrell (I)' as Shane Hunter, Fred Armisen as Frank 2.0, Bill Hader as Kevin in an episode in 2010, Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Liz in Episode 1 2010, Rob Riggle as Reggie 2011, Bobby Moynihan as Stewart Derr, Siobhan Fallon Hogan as Patricia 2007, Andy Samberg as himself 2012, Kristen Wiig as Candice Van Der Shark 2007, Amy Poehler as young Liz 2012, Don Pardo and Sid 2009, Horatio Sanz' as Maynard 2010, Molly Shannon as Katherine Catherine 2007, Jon Glaser (did, I THINK one SNL skit) as Mike, and Lorne Michaels as Reverend Gimp.
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Tina Fey and Scott Adsit both did voice work for the pinball game Medieval Madness.
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In 30 Rock: The Ones (2009) Kenneth states his real name shortly before suffering an allergic shock being Dick Whitman. Dick Whitman is also the real name of Don Draper, one of the Main Characters of "Mad Men (2007)".
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Rachel Dratch's appearance as various characters throughout the show is a fourth-wall-busting display of improv, a topic in many of the episodes.
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Don Geiss and his son Bertram (played by real life father and son, Rip Torn and Tony Torn, respectively) never shared a scene together.
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Tina Fey (Liz Lemon), Jack McBrayer (Kenneth Parcell), and Scott Adsit (Pete Hornberger) have all provided their voices for work in Disney films. Fey in Monkey Kingdom (2015), McBrayer starred as Fix It Felix in Wreck It Ralph (2012), and Adsit in Big Hero 6 (2014).
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Will Forte, Mary Steenbergen, and Kristen Schaal all guest starred on 30 Rock before going on to star in The Last Man on Earth (2015-)
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The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

Over the course of the series, there were many hints that Kenneth was considerably older than the character's outward appearance would suggest (the actor who plays Kenneth, Jack McBrayer, was in his early 30s when "30 Rock" started). These include: Kenneth's recognition of TV pop culture from decades before he logically would have been born; he's familiar with the laws of the Roman Republic and fluent in Latin; his anxiety in "Don Geiss, America and Hope" that NBC will start limiting and verifying the ages of their pages and his concern in "The Problem Solvers" that people in the office have been spreading a rumor that he's "been alive forever"; his memory that an eight-year-old 'Shirley Temple (I)' taught him how to roll cigarettes; his refusal to tell Suze Orman his age in "Today You Are a Man"; his on-screen identification as "Kenneth Parcell: Elderly Page" in "Queen of Jordan"; and many other jokes and references. In the episode "Governor Dunston," Kenneth's mother (Catherine O'Hara) visits and tells Jenna that Kenneth has "always been a special boy. I remember the day he was born. He looked up at me and said, 'Momma, I am not a person. My body's just a flesh vessel for an immortal being whose name if you heard it would make you lose your mind.'" In the last episode of the series, Kenneth looks to be exactly the same even many decades in the future, still the president of NBC, hearing a series pitch from Liz's great-granddaughter; many viewers speculated that that meant that Kenneth is actually immortal.
Kenneth said in an episode that when he first started at NBC, an 8 year old Shirley Temple taught him how to roll a cigarette. Shirley Temple was born in 1928 which means Kenneth started at NBC in 1936.
The show often pokes fun at themes and characters that the show leaves hanging. For example, in one episode, Kenneth tells Liz that no more mail could fit into her box because it was stuffed with unopened adoption letters, hinting at Liz's disappeared interest to adopt a child. Another instance is the character of Danny Baker. In one episode, Pete tells Danny that he would've asked Danny to do a favor for him, but he forgot he works at TGS, poking fun at the fact that Danny often goes missing for several episodes at a time. Again, in the 100th episode, Danny states that he remembers season 1 of TGS, even though he hadn't worked there yet, but then later in the episode has Josh's flashbacks, meaning that Danny and Josh share the same fate in which they both appear in several episodes and then are never heard from again.
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Elizabeth Banks played a character on Scrubs (2001) who was impregnated by a character named J.D. (John Dorian). On "30 Rock", she was impregnated by another character with initials J.D. (Jack Donaghy).

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