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NBC to air classic 'Saturday Night Live' episodes

The first "SNL Vintage" installment will air this Saturday at 10 p.m. ET/PT. The 1975 episode was hosted by Richard Pryor and featured Gil Scott-Heron as a musical guest.

By Karen Butler
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NBC to air classic 'Saturday Night Live' episodes
Actor Bill Murray was with "SNL" from 1977-1980. UPI/Jim Ruymen | License Photo

NEW YORK, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- NBC says it will celebrate the 40th anniversary of Saturday Night Live by airing a classic episode of the New York sketch comedy series each weekend.

The first SNL Vintage installment will air this Saturday at 10 p.m. ET/PT. The 1975 episode was hosted by Richard Pryor and featured Gil Scott-Heron as a musical guest. A single episode from each season will then air throughout the year.

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Fresh episodes of SNL will be broadcast each Saturday night in the show's usual time slot of 11:30 p.m. ET/PT, starting this week with Chris Pratt serving as guest host for its Season 40 premiere.

"Since its inception in 1975, SNL has launched the careers of many of the brightest comedy performers of their generation," NBC noted in a news release. "The program has won 45 Emmy Awards and now holds the title for the most nominated television show in Emmy history with 187. SNL has been honored twice, in 1990 and 2009, with the prestigious George Foster Peabody Award, and cited as 'truly a national institution.'"

Among the comic titans who are former SNL cast members are Bill Murray, John Belushi, Gilda Radner, Dan Aykroyd, Chevy Chase, Eddie Murphy, Jane Curtin, Phil Hartman, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Mike Myers, Will Ferrell, Chris Rock, Amy Poehler, Billy Crystal, Martin Short, Jon Lovitz, Adam Sandler, Jimmy Fallon, Tina Fey, Kristen Wiig and Seth Meyers.

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