Although Emmy Award-winner Tracey Wigfield is happy to have found success in Hollywood, she’d just as soon have made it big in her native New Jersey.
“I love New Jersey,” says Wigfield, 33, who grew up in Wayne. “I would live there now if people wanted to make movies and television shows there.”
Wigfield won her Emmy in 2013 for cowriting the final episode of NBC’s 30 Rock with series star Tina Fey. Now Fey and Wigfield are collaborating on another workplace comedy, Great News, scheduled to premiere April 25 on NBC. This time, it’s Wigfield’s brainchild.
The multitalented Wigfield was only nine when she and her younger sister began auditioning for commercials in New York City. “I was in one or two as the weird friend on the side,” she says. Her first taste of the big time was a summer internship with CNN. “I had a job at Bloomingdale’s at the Willowbrook Mall,” she recalls. “I would work at CNN, take the bus, work at the mall, and then go home.”
After earning a degree in English and theater at Boston College, she headed to New York and landed a job as a script coordinator with 30 Rock. It was two years before she got her big break.
“I knew they were looking for a staff writer,” she says. “I asked if I could submit a spec script. As an assistant, I had pitched jokes that got on the show. I think they could see that I was funny and not a crazy person.”
Wigfield wrote nine episodes and graduated from staff writer to producer for 30 Rock, then moved on to The Mindy Project, writing 15 episodes and appearing in 12 installments of the hit series on Fox.
For Great News, Wigfield shares executive-producer credit with her old 30 Rock bosses, Fey and Robert Carlock. The series stars Briga Heelan as a TV news producer whose mom (played by Andrea Martin) reenters the workforce with a job as an intern at her station. The show also features such familiar faces as Nicole Richie and Horatio Sanz.
“The show is totally based on my mother and [me],” says Wigfield, adding, “there’s tons of New Jersey humor. The mother attends Jon Bon Jovi Community College!”Click here to leave a comment