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SNL's 40th Anniversary Special to Feature Nothing But Guest Stars

By Genevieve Burgess | Saturday Night Live | February 15, 2015 |

By Genevieve Burgess | Saturday Night Live | February 15, 2015 |

What began as idle curiosity over a news blurb I noticed about a possible ‘NSync reunion on tonight’s Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary Special ended up leading me down a rabbit hole of guest star lists that all seem far too expansive for the 210 minute runtime. I mean, I know that sounds absurd on the surface, but take out the roughly 56 minutes of commercials and you’re talking 154 minutes left for content. With at least 14 musical guests on the list, there’s going to be some serious time and ego management taking place.

The full list over at E! Online seems to show that there will be somewhere in the neighborhood of 115 performers on tonight’s show, a number that includes all the current cast members. And given that it’s a 40th Anniversary special, and it’s unclear if this includes people just shown in old clips or if all of these people will be there live. I hadn’t originally planned on watching, but I am now genuinely curious to see how they manage that herd of people. One would hope it means a lot of snappy sketches that make the best use of their guest stars in a brief yet entertaining way, but this is SNL so at least a few sketches are guaranteed to stretch long past the point of enjoyable. Here’s a small sampling of the performer list:

Eddie Murphy
Edward Norton
Ellen Cleghorne
Elliott Gould
Elvis Costello
Emma Stone
Fiona Apple
Fred Armisen
Garrett Morris
George Lucas
Gilbert Gottfried
Glenn Close
Horatio Sanz
J.K. Simmons
Jack Nicholson
Jack White
James Franco
Jane Curtin
Jason Sudeikis
Jay Pharaoh
Jerry Seinfeld
Jim Carrey
Jimmy Fallon
Joe Piscopo
John Goodman
Johnny Knoxville
Jon Bon Jovi
Jon Lovitz
Julia Sweeney
Justin Timberlake

The Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary special will be on tonight at 8:00pm ET, which is actually several months before the real 40th Anniversary of the show but I guess NBC is going with an advantageous showing in the sweeps period over nostalgia.

Genevieve Burgess is a Features Contributor for Pajiba. You can follow Genevieve Burgess on Twitter.

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