Iconic NBC Sitcom Cast Reunited 25 Years After Series Premiere

NBC has churned out a number of compelling sitcoms over the years, many of which have made bonafide stars out of its ensemble cast members. Among them is 3rd Rock From the Sun, the sci-fi comedy that aired from 1996 to 2001. Nearly a quarter of a century after the series first made its debut, it looks like the cast has crossed paths yet again. During the recent Vulture Festival 2021, several cast members of 3rd Rock reunited publicly for the first time, including Joseph Gordon-Levitt, French Stewart, Kristen Johnson, Wayne Knight, and John Lithgow. The panel also featured a virtual appearance from Jane Curtin, as well as a pre-recorded message from writer Will Forte. You can check out a few photos from the event below.

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(Photo: Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Vulture)
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(Photo: Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Vulture)

"I was never going to do a sitcom," Lithgow said of his work on the series during the event. "I was sort of ambushed by Bonnie and Terry Turner and Marcy Carsey and Tom Werner and Caryn Mandabach at this historic breakfast. I thought I was just having a chummy breakfast with Bonnie and Terry, my old friends from their SNL writing days. I sat down and saw the whole power structure of Carsey-Werner and I suddenly realized, 'I'm being pitched.' I just thought, How am I going to say no and get out of this as gracefully as I can? It fell to Terry to pitch this thing to me, and he said 'Well, it's about these four aliens' – and my heart just sank. Oh my God, how did I get into this? And then five minutes later, he persuaded me to do this. It was such an incredible premise, and they had completely tailored it for my particular lunacy. They'd gotten a little glimpse of it when I'd hosted SNL and were on the writing staff. They changed my entire life in five minutes. That was the beginning of the process of putting together the four of us."

Over the years, some have wondered if 3rd Rock could join the ever-growing list of TV shows that get rebooted, especially now that NBCUniversal has launched its Peacock streaming service.

"As soon as I'm available," Lithgow told Deadline back in 2019. "I just loved 3rd Rock From the Sun. It's amazing how often when I'm asked to do something that couldn't be more different, the director or the writer will cross reference my performances in 3rd Rock from the Sun, because I went flying in all directions in that role. It was an alien trying out different ways of being a human, trying to figure things out."

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