30 Rock is an American television comedy series created by Tina Fey that airs on NBC. The series takes place behind the scenes of a fictional live sketch comedy series depicted as airing on NBC; the name "30 Rock" refers to the address of the GE Building where NBC Studios is located, 30 Rockefeller Plaza. This series is produced by Broadway Video and Little Stranger, Inc., in association with NBC Universal
30 Rock is produced in a single camera setup, and is primarily filmed at Silvercup Studios in Long Island City, Queens, New York, with some scenes filmed on location at Rockefeller Center.The pilot episode premiered on October 11, 2006.Three full seasons have aired since, comprising 21, 15, and 22 episodes each. The fourth season began airing on October 15, 2009. The series has an ensemble cast that currently consists of 10 regular cast members, including Tina Fey, Tracy Morgan, Jane Krakowski, Jack McBrayer, Scott Adsit, Judah Friedlander and Alec Baldwin
30 Rock has been a critical success, winning several major awards, and achieving the top ranking on myriad critics' year-end best of 2006 and 2007 lists.On July 14, 2009, the series was nominated for 22 Emmy Awards, the most in a single year for a comedy series. Despite these accolades, the series averaged a low 5.8 million viewers in the United States during its first season, according to the Nielsen Ratings system, and ranked 102 out of 142 television series.TV commentators[specify] have pointed out that 30 Rock is a low rated show, but it has gained viewers throughout its run
In 2002, Fey was the head writer and a performer on Saturday Night Live (SNL). She pitched the show that became 30 Rock to NBC, originally as a sitcom about cable news. NBC Entertainment president Kevin Reilly felt that "Fey was using the news setting as a fig leaf for her own experience and [he] encouraged her to write what she knew." The show was subsequently reworked to revolve around an SNL-style sketch show. In May 2003, Fey signed a contract with NBC to remain in her SNL head writer position until at least the 2004–2005 television season and to develop a prime-time project to be produced by Broadway Video and NBC Universal.
During the 2004–2005 pilot season, a pilot was announced named Untitled Tina Fey Project. The 30 Rock pilot focused on the head writer of a variety show who has to manage her relationships with the show's volatile star and its charismatic executive producer. The storyline evolved into one that dealt with a head writer of a variety show who dealt with both the stars as well as the show's new network executive. 30 Rock was officially given the green light to air May 15, 2006, along with a 13-episode order
The series underwent further changes during the months leading up to and following its debut. A May 2006 press release mentioned that sketches from The Girlie Show would be made available in their entirety on NBC's broadband website, DotComedy.com. The idea was to air the fictitious TGS with Tracy Jordan online. This aspect of the series was abandoned prior to its debut.
30 Rock is filmed in New York City. Although establishing shots of 30 Rock are often repeated, outdoor scenes are filmed on location at Rockefeller Center or in other parts of New York City. Most of the indoor scenes are filmed at Silvercup Studios in Queens. In the episodes "Cleveland" and "Hiatus," Battery Park City, Manhattan, and Douglaston, Queens, doubled for Cleveland, Ohio, and Needmore, Pennsylvania, respectively. In the episode "Gavin Volure," stock footage of the Arkansas Governor's Mansion was used for exterior shots of the home of Steve Martin's character.
The title sequence is made up of photos and video of 30 Rockefeller Plaza and features the series regulars. The sequence ends with a time lapse of the building and then a title card reading '30 Rock'. The sequence has remained mostly the same throughout the series, although there have been changes to the videos of most of the actors.
30 Rock is shot on 35mm film.