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Behind the scenes of the Emmys: A stage manager had to alert Jimmy Kimmel and Jennifer Aniston to put out the on-stage fire

  • “That was very scary, by the way,” said Molly McNearney, Kimmel's wife and Jimmy Kimmel Live!'s co-head writer, in an interview with Variety “Not a great time to be lighting things on fire in California. That was not the way it was supposed to go.” McNearney said the fire stunt worked in rehearsals. But when during the broadcast, when the flame appeared for a third time, neither Aniston or Kimmel noticed, prompting a stage manager to alert them. McNearney credited Aniston for “impeccable timing” in keeping the extinguisher going. “That extinguisher was supposed to extinguish the first time and it didn’t,” she said. “I have to tell you that I loved watching it from the sideline, I was there knowing that neither of those two, Jen or Jimmy, had any idea that fire was crawling up that third time was pretty exciting for us.” McNearney also shared other behind-the-scenes tidbits, such as the opening monologue where it appeared Kimmel was speaking to an actual audience took weeks to prepare and choreograph. As for the hazmat suits handing out Emmy trophies, McNearney said: "I don’t know how the hell they pulled that off." McNearney also revealed that Kimmel had the real Stanley Cup on stage, how the mini-Friends reunion came together and that the "only unexpected moment" was how to incorporate Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after her death on Friday. "We thought, how do we deal with this, she’s not a television star," she said. "She’s an American icon, but we wanted to acknowledge her in some way and pay our respects but then also, keep her separate from us petty television people."

    TOPICS: 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards, ABC, Jennifer Aniston, Jimmy Kimmel, Molly McNearney, Award Shows