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Big Time Rush is an American musical comedy television series created by Scott Fellows, which aire don Nickelodeon from November 28, 2009, until July 25, 2013, lasting four seasons. The show revolves around the misadventures of four Hollywood hockey players from Duluth, Minnesota who are given the opportunity to fly to Hollywood and become a famous singing group. Kendall Schmidt, James Maslow, Carlos PenaVega, and Logan Henderson, who comprise the real-life band Big Time Rush, play fictional versions of themselves. The series was produced by Jack Mackie Productions in collaboration with Sony Music Entertainment and Nickelodeon Productions.

Filming took place at Studio 27 of Paramount Pictures in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California.

Premise

Kendall Knight, James Diamond, Carlos Garcia, and Logan Mitchell are four hockey players from Minnesota who spend their days chasing girls and working dull part-time jobs. James, who aspires to become a singer and live the glamorous Hollywood lifestyle, attends an audition for music producer Gustavo Rocqué, who has fallen from his days of creating mega-hits for the most famous groups in Hollywood. When James is thoughtlessly rejected, Kendall makes a scene while sticking up for his friend, which ultimately captures Rocqué's attention. Gustavo offers to sign Kendall to his label, and he agrees on one condition: He and his three friends are all picked up and become a singing group. Gustavo hesitantly agrees, and the four teenagers, who name themselves Big Time Rush, are flown out to Hollywood to record demos for the infamously cold executives behind Rocqué Records.

Outside the recording studio, the boys are habitually confronted Mr. Bitters (David Anthony Higgins), the Palm Woods manager, who covets their apartment and continually searches for reasons to evict them. Each episode centers around a problem that the boys attempt to resolve the problem with a ridiculous scheme. Instead of fighting with her brother as would a stereotypical younger sibling, Kendall's sister Katie, is by far the sharpest person on the show and often functions as a deus ex machina whose assistance is valuable to the boys' plans. Many episodes end with a music video-like segment in which the boys sing one of their songs. Over time, elements of the show have disappeared, creating the show to be more dramatic and focused on one thing.

Each episode begins with a cold open, leading into the theme song. The opening theme is "Big Time Rush," and is presented as shots of characters mixed in with animated booklet pictures, scenes from various episodes, and graphic effects. As of season 2, Tanya Chisholm appears in the opening sequence as she has been added to the main cast.

Cast and characters

Main cast

Recurring cast

Episodes

Main article: List of Big Time Rush episodes

Season Episodes Originally aired
First aired Last aired
1 20 November 28, 2009 August 20, 2010
2 29 September 25, 2010 January 28, 2012
Film March 10, 2012
3 12 May 12, 2012 November 10, 2012
4 13 May 2, 2013 July 25, 2013

Season 1

It was shown as a preview in Australia and New Zealand on April 10, 2010, and premiered on May 15, 2010. It previewed on April 16, 2010, and premiered on May 31, 2010, in Southeast Asia. In the United Kingdom and Ireland it previewed on May 27, 2010, and premiered on June 21, 2010. In Canada it previewed on August 6, 2010, and premiered on September 6, 2010.

Season 2

It premiered in January 2011 in Australia and New Zealand and in February 2011 in the UK and Ireland.

Season 3

The third season premiered November 2012 in Australia and New Zealand and in December 2012 in the UK and Ireland.

Season 4

It premiered in August 2013 in Canada and in late 2013 in the UK and Ireland.

Television film

Main Article: Big Time Movie

In late 2011, Nickelodeon announced that a television film based on the television series was going to premiere. However, a promo did not air until February 2012. The movie premiered on Nickelodeon on March 10, 2012, at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Throughout the whole weekend, the movie drew 13.1 million viewers.

Production

The series was conceived and created by Scott Fellows, formerly the creator, executive producer and showrunner of Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide. Fellows says his inspiration for the show was the musical comedy show, The Monkees—a popular and culturally significant American television series from the 1960s about a group of four young male adults who form a rock band, and perform songs while having comedic adventures. Although the show had a concept as early as 2007, the series had no actual title as late as August 2009.

The opening titles for the show were recorded in a valley using a large green screen.[1]

Casting

A nationwide casting effort began in 2007. More than 1,500 teens and young adults auditioned for the four roles. James Maslow and Logan Henderson were the easiest and first actors cast. Kendall Schmidt was the last actor cast, and the most difficult role to cast. The role of Kendall Knight was originally to go to Curt Hansen, who now plays Dak Zevon on the show, but when he appeared a lot older than the others and sounded too much like James in the pick up pilot, the producers auditioned and cast Schmidt after a recommendation by Logan Henderson, who was also friends with the actor before casting. Filming of the series began in August 2009. Actor Carlos PenaVega previously worked with Scott Fellows on Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide. As he had just entered the Boston Conservatory to study musical theatre, PenaVega was reluctant to audition but sent in a tape at the encouragement of his manager. Executive producer Scott Fellows was inspired to write each character by the personality of the actor playing him.

In addition to PenaVega, Spencer Locke, Daran Norris, Carlie Casey, Ted Garcia, Tristin Mays, Linda Cevallos, Fabio Lanzoni, Adam Conway, James Arnold Taylor and Hamilton Mitch all worked with Scott Fellows previously on Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide.

Premiere

The series premiered with an hour-long pilot episode, "Big Time Audition", on Nickelodeon, on November 28, 2009. Its official debut episode premiered on January 18, 2010, earning 6.8 million viewers, making it Nickelodeon's highest-rated live-action series debut ever. The show's second season premiered on September 25, 2010. On May 24, 2011, Big Time Rush was renewed for a third season with production scheduled to begin January 2012. Season three premiered May 12, 2012. On March 10, 2012, a film adaptation named "Big Time Movie" based on the series premiered. On August 6, 2012, Nickelodeon renewed Big Time Rush for a 13-episode fourth season. Production began on January 7, 2013. The fourth season premiered May 2, 2013, and aired its series finale "Big Time Dreams" on July 25, 2013. With a series run of 74 episodes spanning over four seasons in 4 years, Big Time Rush is the sixth longest running live-action TV series in the history of the Nickelodeon.

Music

Main article: Big Time Rush

Big Time Rush is a Nickelodeon Viacom Music Productions Band consisting of four members: Kendall Schmidt, James Maslow, Logan Henderson, and Carlos Pena Jr. Nickelodeon partnered with Columbia/Epic Label Group to produce the show, which is why music and instrumentals are incorporated throughout the series.

Big Time Rush's debut album, B.T.R., was released on October 11, 2010, via Sony/Columbia. Their second full-length album, entitled Elevate, was released on November 21, 2011. Big Time Rush released their new song "If I Ruled the World" ft. Iyaz on iTunes July 22. They have also released a number of new songs such as "Music Sounds Better with U" (feat. Mann), "Love Me Love Me", "Time of Our Life" and "Superstar". They also released three singles, "Paralyzed", "Blow Your Speakers" and "Epic" in 2012. Note: These songs were bonus tracks on their album "Elevate". "Blow Your Speakers" was the bonus track for iTunes, "Paralyzed" was the bonus track on Big Time Rush's Official Website. Then, "Epic" was the bonus track on the U.K. album version. They released their third CD, 24/Seven in the summer of 2013. Among the songs on the CD is "We Are" which won a Viewer's Choice award.

Nickelodeon partnered with Columbia/Epic Label Group to produce the show, which incorporates original music into the series. Big Time Rush is one of the three Nickelodeon shows (the others are iCarly and Victorious) on which the cable network is partnering with the music group to promote music as well as shows. The Los Angeles Times has been critical of the show's focus on music, noting:

The closing credits of Nickelodeon airings of the show contain short clips of music videos for singles featured the series. Occasionally, full versions of the videos are featured.

The show incorporates wacky sound effects, some laugh-like noises, music, and editing cuts designed to make it more humorous to the intended demographic of viewers age 10 to 18; this was also typical of creator Scott Fellows' previous work on Nickelodeon. However, the show does not have a laugh track. Big Time Rush made an appearance at the 2010 Kids' Choice Awards, the 2010 Teen Choice Award and performed at the 2011 Kids' Choice Awards. they also appeared in an episode of BrainSurge during the week of April 18–22, 2011. On November 24, 2011, the group performed the National Anthem at Cowboys Stadium for the Thanksgiving NFL game which was broadcast on CBS. Big Time Rush has released 3 albums, B.T.R, Elevate and 24/Seven.

More singles were released in 2012. Big Time Rush covered The Beatles songs in their movie "Big Time Movie" which was released March 10, 2012.

They went on tour with Victoria Justice in 2013 on the Summer Break Tour. Their final tour before the hiatus was the Big Time Rush: Live World Tour in 2014 for the month of February.

On July 19, 2021, the band officially announced their comeback via Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, and TikTok, after their indefinite hiatus back in 2014. The group released a video announcing two reunion performances which occurred in December 2021, along with two Jingle Ball appearances. They have confirmed their intention to continue independently as band without the show.

Reception

Audience reception

A one-hour special preview (which serves as the series pilot and first episode) debuted on Nickelodeon on November 28, 2009, drawing an audience of 3.6 million viewers. The series' official premiere on January 18, 2010 (which followed the premiere of the iCarly special "iSaved Your Life"), was watched by a total of 6.8 million total viewers, Nickelodeon's highest-rated live-action series debut.

Critical reception

The show received mixed reviews. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette stated the show was "Nick's attempt at building a Jonas Brothers-style pop band. It's Nick's answer to Disney Channel's 'JONAS,' albeit slightly less organic since 'Rush' doesn't feature siblings." The Hartford Courant stated the series a "not so good" show "with their thin pop and unfunny comedies". The Boston Globe stated the show as "one example in a growing list of kid shows selling showbiz fantasies to children. The genre is stronger than ever now and more fixated on the perks of the glamorous Hollywood lifestyle ... wish fulfillment at a time when tabloid dreams are ubiquitous." DVD Talk had the following review of the Big Time Rush: Season 1, Volume 1 DVD. "It would be hard to craft a description engineered to be less interesting to me, and yet, as I plowed through this collection from the series' beginnings, I frequently found myself amended and entertained. Say what you will about Nickelodeon's teen programming, but they've got the art of making a solid sitcom down to a science."

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Recipient(s) Result
2010 2010 Australian Kids' Choice Awards Fave TV Star Big Time Rush Nominated
Casting Society of America Outstanding Achievement in Casting – Children's Series Programming Tara-Anne Johnson

Carol Goldwasser Sharon Chazin Lieblein Howard Meltzer Geralyn Flood

Nominated
2011 2011 Kids' Choice Awards Favorite TV Show Big Time Rush Nominated
2011 UK Kids' Choice Awards Nick UK's Favourite Show Big Time Rush Nominated
2011 Australian Kids' Choice Awards Fave TV Star Big Time Rush Nominated
Young Artist Awards Best Performance In A TV Series – Guest Starring Young Actor 18–21 Thomas Kasp Nominated
Best Performance In A TV Series – Recurring Young Actor Ten and Under Tucker Albrizzi Nominated
Best Performance In A TV Series – Recurring Young Actress 17–21 Erin Sanders Won
Youth Rocks Awards Rockin' Ensemble Cast (TV/ Comedy) Big Time Rush Nominated
Kids' Choice Awards Mexico Favorite International Show Big Time Rush Won
Kids' Choice Awards Argentina 2011 Favorite International TV Show Big Time Rush Nominated
Meus Prêmios Nick Brazil Favorite TV Show Big Time Rush Nominated
2012 Young Artist Awards Best Performance In A TV Series – Supporting Young Actress Ciara Bravo Nominated
Best Performance In A TV Series – Guest Starring Young Actor Ten and Under Tucker Albrizzi Nominated
Best Performance In A TV Series – Recurring Young Actress 17–21 Erin Sanders Won
Kids' Choice Awards Mexico Favorite International Show Big Time Rush Nominated
Kids' Choice Awards Argentina Favorite International TV Show Big Time Rush Nominated
TV Grama Awards International Pop Series Big Time Rush Nominated
2012 Hollywood Teen TV Awards Favorite Television Actor Kendall Schmidt Nominated
2013 2013 Kids' Choice Awards Favorite TV Actor Carlos Pena Nominated
2013 Kids Choice Awards México 2013 Favorite International TV Show Big Time Rush Nominated
2013 Kids Choice Awards Argentina Favorite International Program Big Time Rush Won
2014 Kids Choice Awards Colombia Favorite International TV Series Big Time Rush Won
2014 Shorty Awards Best TV Show in Social Media Big Time Rush Nominated
2015 Shorty Awards Best TV Show in Social Media Big Time Rush Nominated
2017 Kids Choice Awards Colombia 20 Years Of Nick In Latin America Big Time Rush Nominated
2017 Kids Choice Awards Mexico 20 Years Of Nick In Latin America Big Time Rush Won
2017 Meus Prêmios Nick Brazil Nick Retro / 20 Years Of Nick Big Time Rush Nominated
2017 Kids' Choice Awards Argentina Favorite International Nick Show of The Past 20 years Big Time Rush Won

Distribution

Broadcast & Streaming Services

The series aired worldwide on Nickelodeon.

As of March 2021, the series is available to stream on Netflix and Paramount+. The series was previously available to stream on Hulu until it was removed in March 2021.

Home media

Name Region 1 Region 2 Contains
Big Time Rush: Season One, Volumes One/Volume Two March 29, 2011 October 10, 2011(part 1)/ February 13, 2012(Part 2) Volume One Episodes 1-12/Volume Two Episodes 13–20.
Big Time Rush: Season Two, Volume One January 17, 2012 November 8, 2012 Volume One episodes 21–31, 34–36 episodes from season 2.
Big Time Movie/Rags: 2-In-One Movie Pack' August 28, 2012 TBA Features Big Time Movie and Rags on a disc pack.
Big Time Rush: Season Two, Volume Two January 25, 2013 June 6, 2013 Volume Two episodes 32–33, 37–49 episodes from season 2.
Big Time Rush: The Complete First Season July 8, 2015 March 26, 2012 Contains all the episodes from season 1. Manufactured on demand (MOD) on DVD-R.

References

  1. Maslow, James [@JamesMaslow] (November 6, 2009). "Dancing on a HUGE green screen in the valley for the opening titles of the show! So much fun!" (Tweet). Retrieved April 27, 2022 – via Twitter.
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