[10/19/05 - 12:00 AM]
Saturday Night Live in the '80s: Lost and Found Debuts November 13 9-11pm

[via press release from NBC]



NBC to Present '80s Era Episodes in the "All Night" Time Period Leading Up To Special's Debut

NEW YORK - October 19, 2005 - As part of the ongoing celebration of the 30th Anniversary of NBC's "Saturday Night Live," the network will present a new installment of the compelling behind-the-scenes look at the re-invention of the television icon in "Saturday Night Live in the '80s: Lost and Found" (Sunday, November 13, 9:00 - 11:00 p.m. ET).

Following up on his critically acclaimed and Emmy-nominated documentary "Live From New York: The First 5 Years of Saturday Night Live," writer-director-producer Kenneth Bowser ("Easy Riders & Raging Bulls") has created a look at the roller coaster ride that SNL endured throughout the decade.

"'Saturday Night Live' is not only one of television's longest-running series, it continues to be one of the most influential and important," said Rick Ludwin, Executive Vice President, Late Night and Primetime Series, NBC Entertainment, "Viewers and critics made the 'SNL First 5 Years' special a hit. This new program is the next chapter of the story. It has all the memorable moments and backstage revelations from the comedy stars and creative talents who were there in the '80s."

The stories take the show all over the map - from near cancellation to re-invention and back again. Viewers will get a rare, intimate look at the behind-the-scenes changes at the most influential television comedy in history and its journey after such an auspicious beginning to firmly rooting itself as the comedy institution it has become over the last 30 years.

Among the new and candid interviews are creator and executive producer Lorne Michaels (who left the show in 1980 and returned in 1985), and executive producer Dick Ebersol (who took the reins from 1981 through 1984) as well as many of the show's stars who are still shaping comedy today including Jim Belushi, Dana Carvey, Billy Crystal, Nora Dunn, Gilbert Gottfried, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jon Lovitz, Kevin Nealon, Joe Piscopo, Martin Short, and Terry Sweeney; as well as staff members and writers including Al Franken, Tom Davis, Conan O'Brien and Robert Smigel.

The film transcends the traditional retrospective clip show. While there will be laughs aplenty from classic moments from the decade, the film is comprised of revelations and reminders of some of the most cutting edge comedy ever produced. A time when the people shaping comedy today (Larry David, Christopher Guest, Harry Shearer, O'Brien and others) were just starting out. A period when the show could be guest directed by Oscar winner Francis Ford Coppola and 19-year-old unknowns like Eddie Murphy skyrocketed to superstardom. This is the decade of tumult and triumph with executive producers changing over...and the one cast seeing names like Robert Downey Jr., Joan Cusack, Anthony Michael Hall while another season would feature a roster that would come to be called the "all-star" cast including Crystal, Guest, Louis Dreyfus, Short and Belushi.

These are the stories fans haven't heard - all presented in the same funny, fast-paced, nostalgic format that earned "The First 5 Years" an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Non-Fiction Special. The stories from the '80s are also framed and propelled by the best musical acts of the decade, including: Aerosmith, Bonnie Raitt, Cowboy Junkies, Hall & Oates, Don Henley, Fine Young Cannibals, George Thorogood & the Destroyers, Queen, The Bangles, The Kinks, James Brown, Johnny Cash, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Lone Justice, Stevie Wonder, James Taylor, Harry Connick, Jr., Elvis Costello and Roy Orbison.

Leading up to the special, NBC has begun re-airing Emmy-nominated and memorable episodes from the '80s in the "All-Night" timeslot (directly following SNL on Saturday nights or at 3 a.m. ET, check local listings) for five weeks leading up to the special (it began this past Saturday with an episode hosted by Rev. Jesse Jackson from the 1984-85 season) and continues through November 12.

The October 22 "All Night" show, with host Madonna and musical guest Simple Minds (from the 1985-86 season), was the first show produced by Lorne Michaels after his five- year absence. The Oct. 29 show features the 1987 Sean Penn/LL Cool J episode featuring the unforgettable sketch with Penn decking Carvey's "Church Lady". November 5 brings the Emmy nominated episode from the 1988-89 season hosted by Tom Hanks featuring musical guest Keith Richards (as well as a cameo from then-staff writer Conan O'Brien with a horse). Finally, on November 12, 1983's episode hosted by Bruce Dern with music from Leon Redbone which features the (literally) show-stopping run of sketches following the assassination of Eddie Murphy's "Buckwheat."

  [october 2005]  

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