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. 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 one of the longest running live-action TV series in the history of the network, sixth to The Secret World of Alex Mack, Every Witch Way, All That, Are You Afraid of the Dark?, and iCarly.Kendall Schmidt as Kendall Knight, the leader of the group.
James Maslow as James Diamond, the handsome one of the group.
Carlos Pena Jr. as Carlos Garcia, the crazy, wild, and fun loving one of the group.
Logan Henderson as Logan Mitchell, the smart one of the group.
Ciara Bravo as Katie Knight, Kendall's trouble-maker little sister.
Stephen Kramer Glickman as Gustavo Rocque, the boys' hot-tempered manager.
Tanya Chisholm as Kelly Wainwright (recurring season 1, main season 2-4), Gustavo's assistant.
Katelyn Tarver as Jo Taylor, an actress, a singer, and Kendall's girlfriend.
Challen Cates as Jennifer Knight, Kendall and Katie's mother, who takes care of the boys in LA.
Erin Sanders as Camille Roberts, Jo and Lucy's best friend and Logan's on-and-off again girlfriend.
Malese Jow as Lucy Stone, a punk rocker and James's girlfriend.
Matt Riedy as Arthur Griffin, Gustavo's boss.
David Anthony Higgins as Reginald Bitters, the manager of the Palm Woods.
Denyse Tontz as Jennifer 1, the first Jennifer, Carlos' girlfriend
Spencer Locke/Kelli Goss as Jennifer 2, The second Jennifer.
Savannah Jayde as Jennifer 3, The third and final Jennifer
Tucker Albrizzi as Tyler Duncan, the star of the Juice Box commercials, and neighbor from Palm Woods.
Barnett O'Hara as Guitar Dude, a guitarist.
Daran Norris as Buddha Bob, The Palm Woods groundskeeper.
David Cade as Jett Stetson, Kendall's nemesis.
Tara Strong as Miss Collins, a teacher at the Palm Woods school.
Stephen Keys as Freight Train, Gustavo's bodyguard.
Lorenzo Lamas as Dr. Hollywood, the local doctor.
Phil LaMarr as Hawk, Gustavo's nemesis.
Ted Garcia as himself, the news reporter.
Fabio Lanzoni as himself, Katie's nemesis.
Chris Fabregas as various characters
Erik Estrada as Papi Garcia (Carlos' dad)
Lisa Rinna as Brooke Diamond (James mom)
Jill-Michele Meleán as Sylvia Garcia (Carlos' mom)
Holly Wortell as Joanna Mitchell (Logan's mom)
Lita Ford as herself
Dee Bradley Baker as Mr. Smitty
Matthew Moy as Deke the blogger
Sammy Jay Wren as Jenny Tinkler
Curt Hansen as Dak Zevon
Russell Brand as himself
Cher Lloyd as herself
Rajiv Satyal as the scientist
Jordin Sparks as herself
Miranda Cosgrove as herself
Snoop Dogg as himself
Chris Masters as himself
Victoria Justice as herself
Big Time Audition
Big Time Concert
Big Time Christmas
Big Time Beach Party
Big Time Break-Up/Big Time Single
Big Time Surprise/Big Time Decision
Big Time Dreams
In late 2011, there was news 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.
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.
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", "You're Not Alone" 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 24Seven. More singles were released in 2012. It is confirmed that Big Time Rush covered The Beatles songs in their new movie "Big Time Movie" which was released March 10, 2012. They went on tour with Victoria Justice in 2013 on the Summer Break Tour.
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 Pena Jr. previously worked with Scott Fellows on Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide. As he had just entered the Boston Conservatory to study musical theatre, Pena 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 Pena, five are alumni of Scott Fellows make appearances in this show: Spencer Locke, Carlie Casey, Daran Norris, Adam Conway (as recurring cast members), and James Arnold Taylor (as a guest star).
The series is filmed in Studio 27, Paramount Pictures in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California. The series premiere's one-hour special takes place in the suburbs of Los Angeles and a small town in Minnesota.
The Palm Woods Hotel is the fictional hotel where Big Time Rush boys, Mrs. Knight and Katie Knight live in Hollywood. It is the main setting for the series and plenty of the scenes take place in the Palm Woods lobby, park or pool as well as in the apartments and even the air ducts. It's commonly described as the home for the future famous since its residents are mostly aspiring actors/actresses, singers, models or performers such as Camille, Jo, the Jennifers, Lucy, Guitar Dude, Tyler and many others. It is run by the strict manager Mr. Bitters while Buddha Bob works as the janitor.
Rocque Records is the fictional record label owned by RCMCBT Global Net Sanyoid Corporation, Big Time Rush's label and the workplace of Gustavo Rocque and his assistant Kelly. It is supplied with songwriting and recording equipment and either Gustavo or the boys are seen producing there. It is the second most used setting of Big Time Rush stories. Names who worked with Rocque Records include Jordin Sparks. Its rival company is named Hawk Records. Rocque Records places include Gustavo's office, the bathroom and the recording studios (A and B). It is hinted that the record label is a parody of Interscope Records and Jive Records.
The apartment 2J is the Big Time Rush's apartment of the Palm Woods Hotel. It got its current form in Big Time Crib as it used to be simplistic, dirty and messy before. It features a swirly slide and latest home electronics and arcade games. It is claimed that Lindsay Lohan, Shia LeBeouf and Kanye West, all stayed in the apartment in the past. Its interior altered once more when James left Big Time Rush in Big Time Concert and moved into 2J, but it came back to normal soon. Other known apartments in the Palm Woods are the ones of Camille (4J), Jo (3I) and Lucy (2B).
Each episode begins with a pre-opening sequence, 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.
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.
The show has 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."
The series airs worldwide on Nickelodeon.
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.
It premiered in January 2011 in Australia and New Zealand and in February 2011 in the UK and Ireland.
The third season premiered November 2012 in Australia and New Zealand and in December 2012 in the UK and Ireland.
It premiered in August 2013 in Canada and in late 2013 in the UK and Ireland.