Eddie Murphy Reminisces About His Time At 30 Rock On The Tonight Show’ & ‘Late Night’

Eddie Murphy was back at 30 Rock to promote his latest movie Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F – thirty years after leaving Saturday Night Live.

Murphy pulled double duty for NBC late-night this week, appearing on both The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and, for the first time in person, Late Night with Seth Meyers, bringing three former SNL stars together.

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He talked about his first time on late-night, in 1982, when NBC’s flagship talker was hosted by Johnny Carson.

“The first time I went on late-night was The Tonight Show. I did stand-up,” he told Meyers. “I did well. I was excited because back then, that was the height, that was the ceiling, you get on Carson and then you made it. I had a set that I knew was going to work. I was already on Saturday Night Live, they didn’t know I did stand-up so it was perfect.”

He said being back at 30 Rock was like returning to his “old high school”. “I spent so much time in this building, when I was in my 20s, late at night, we used to sleep in our office and run all through this building like maniacs,” he said of his time on the show between 1980 and 1984.

Murphy also joked that when he started as a comedian in 1976, it wasn’t a mainstream profession. “It was like saying ‘I want to be a ventriloquist’,” he said.

One of Murphy’s most famous SNL skits is James Brown’s Celebrity Hot Tub Party, where he does his impression of the funk legend. He told Fallon that Brown liked his impression, enough to try and set him up with his daughter, despite him already being married.

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