Debuting in 1975 under the title 'NBC's Saturday Night,' the Peacock's weekend sketch comedy program 'Saturday Night Live' has been on the air longer than the majority of its current viewing audience has been alive.
The venerable show has had an up and down life, one littered with both great seasons and terrible seasons, as well as terrific casts and abominable ones. Through it all, the only real constants have been the guiding hand of executive producer Lorne Michaels, and a drive to lampoon the latest and greatest in pop culture.
'Saturday Night Live' celebrates its 40th anniversary next year, and as you might expect, NBC isn't just going to let this historic occasion pass without throwing a big party. In this case, a live, three-hour party set to air early next year.
The actual lineup of participants has yet to be released, but the network has confirmed that the special will include not only the current cast, but past alumni, memorable guest hosts, and notable musical acts spanning 'SNL's 40-year lifespan.
At the very least, I'd expect every member of the vaunted "five-timers club" to show up, and I'd be willing to bet that almost every living former cast member will make an appearance. The biggest question marks are likely to be Bill Murray and Eddie Murphy, who have mostly distanced themselves from their years on 'SNL.'
'Saturday Night Live's 40th anniversary special premieres on Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015 at 8/7c. That's about eight months before 'SNL's actual 40th birthday, but I suppose it's close enough.