July 22, 2008 |
The Television Critics Assn. Press Tour, the semi-annual gathering of television journalists from around the country, began at the Beverly Hilton on July 8. This is our final dispatch. -- Show business is all about one-upping the competition. Last week at press tour, Jimmy Kimmel posed as a reporter demanding answers from ABC President of Entertainment Steve McPherson about the fate of his late-night show. Rumors have been swirling again that ABC might want to grab Jay Leno when his stint as "Tonight Show" host ends next May. On Monday, Leno, in a disguise that included a bald head, demonstrated he's a good sport by showing up during NBC's executive session with reporters and inquiring about his awkward situation.
March 17, 2008 |
In the three years after she left her post at "Dateline NBC," Maria Shriver collected hundreds of thousands of dollars from the network as part of an exit deal, even as she pondered whether she could continue her journalism career while her husband was governor of California.
March 1, 2008 |
Before the writers strike, the biggest mystery surrounding NBC's "Scrubs" was whether J.D. (Zach Braff) and Elliot (Sarah Chalke) would pull a Ross-Rachel and finally be together in the hospital comedy's final season. But now the bigger question seems to be whether fans of the 7-year-old comedy will watch the finale on NBC, ABC or DVD. Although NBC had ordered 18 episodes for this season, meant to be its last, and 12 were completed before the strike, the network has not committed to allowing producers to complete the final six episodes.
February 25, 2008 |
Here's an example of the great and seemingly growing divide between people who write about TV and the executives who make it. You may recall that earlier this month, NBC foisted upon us a made-for-TV "Knight Rider" movie, based on the '80s crime-fighter series that starred David Hasselhoff. Reviewers were impressed by neither the movie nor the muscled-up Mustang that the hero zoomed around in. Los Angeles Times critic Mary McNamara described the program as a "two-hour (!
February 4, 2008 |
REMEMBER when they used to gobble horse innards and other delicacies on "Fear Factor"? Ah, 'twas prime time's golden age. Blame it on the writers strike, but network TV is rushing to embrace cheap and sponsor-friendly unscripted programming that makes gross-out contests look like "St. Elsewhere." And leading the way is NBC, the network that for two decades staked its reputation on upscale, high-quality shows such as "ER" and "Law & Order."
January 8, 2008 |
Hollywood's awards season locomotive was derailed Monday when NBC pulled the plug on its highly rated Golden Globes, choosing not to broadcast on Sunday what promised to be a virtually celebrity-free ceremony. The scrapped program would be the first awards show to fall victim to the Writers Guild of America strike, and February's Academy Awards also could be in jeopardy.
December 19, 2007 |
Stimulated by the ongoing writers strike, NBC executives said Tuesday that they will broadcast the latest episodes of "Monk" and "Psych" -- borrowed from sister cable network USA -- starting in March. The new episodes will be shown first on Friday nights on USA, then again on Sunday nights on NBC, presumably to fill holes left by shows that have had to close production due to the strike.
December 18, 2007 |
The first television series that originated on the Internet and then got picked up by a major broadcast network, "quarterlife," will premiere on NBC on Feb. 18, the network said Monday. The series about six creative people in their 20s is produced by Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick, who also produced "thirtysomething" and "My So-Called Life." The 36 eight- to 10-minute "webisodes" of "quarterlife" will be edited into several hourlong episodes for NBC.
December 3, 2007 |
NBC is turning over precious real estate to outside producers in an effort to spend less money on programming as its business is challenged by a changing entertainment landscape. Under a deal quietly finalized last week, NBC agreed to carve out a two-hour block on its prime-time schedule for adventure documentaries produced by Thom Beers, whose credits include such popular cable shows as "Deadliest Catch" and "Monster Garage."
November 28, 2007 |
NBC has picked up two of its freshman series -- "Chuck" and "Life" -- for the remainder of the season while leaving the future of two other struggling high-profile new series up in the air. Ben Silverman, NBC's co-chairman of entertainment, said in a statement that "Chuck" and "Life" had performed well with audiences, and are "hitting their stride creatively."