Live, from New York, it’s… Thursday at 8:30 p.m.? 30 Rock‘s live episode airs this week, and the cast is totally ready. Well, ready to start rehearsing at least. “We’re rehearsing all day today, all day tomorrow, and all day Thursday,” Tina Fey said at a press event this afternoon.
Wait, today is the first rehearsal? Two days before? Is that enough time? “Noooo,” Jack McBrayer laughed. The show usually films over the course of a few days, so the condensed timeframe means “we’ll be flying by the seat of our pants,” joked Jane Krakowski. Alec Baldwin, who was on the live Will & Grace episode back in 2005, said he was less worried about rehearsal — “It’s never enough time” — and more worried about the show running long. “The biggest question is time: Are we going to go to a commercial in the middle of a sentence?”
That was Fey’s major concern, too. “Half an hour is so short, and anyone who’s seen our show knows it’s usually packed like a can of tuna. So figuring it out with a laugh spread, and how much show we can fit … we found a way to do some flashbacks and quick cuts that I think will be fun and exciting.”
But, she warns, relocating to studio 8H instead of the show’s usual digs in Long Island City means some things might look just a tiny bit off. “Pete and I will be talking, and you may see the corner of Jack’s office in the background,” she said. “People shouldn’t watch if they’ve taken any kind of heavy medication.”
What about flubbed lines or on-set mishaps? “My background is in improv, and the rule of thumb for that is that there are no mistakes,” McBrayer said, at which point he and Krakowski started giggling. “I don’t think that’s the case here [laughs], so I’m a liiiittle more nervous.”
Baldwin wasn’t worried. “Everybody adjusts,” he said. “The only fear factor is Tracy.”