In light of NBC’s reassessment of “The Jay Leno Show” at 10 p.m., they might want to listen to a more successful network.
CBS Entertainment president Nina Tassler discussed NBC’s latest programming situation Saturday (Jan. 9) at the winter TCA Press Tour in Pasadena, concluding that NBC’s reading of the TV landscape was “misguided.”
“A couple things. One is, through it all you have to realize that ABC, CBS and FOX have all fared very well during this experimental phase for NBC,” Tassler told critics. “A lot of people really saw this as a pretty negative impact on our business. But I think right now for us, it just allowed us to get a bigger piece of the ad-revenue pie at 10 o’clock.
“What I have the most trouble with is for their company, their decision to do what they did — to sort of turn that and say this is a reflection on the whole network business I think is misguided,” she continued. “Our business is thriving right now. We’ve had success with new hit shows, as has ABC, as has FOX. So I think at the end of the day it was an experiment that obviously did not work, but for us, like I said, there is no substitute for developing and producing and launching great shows.”
Tassler compares the “Jay Leno” situation to another time in NBC’s history.
“But you can harken back to when there was this grand proclamation that 8 o’clock at NBC — remember that? — 8 o’clock was over at NBC, they were going to have a whole different strategy developing for 8 o’clock,” she said. “Then along came 10 o’clock, and there was a whole different strategy for 10 o’clock.”
Tassler appeared to be fairly restrained in her opinions or schadenfreude. This was not the case for Showtime president of entertainment Robert Greenblatt, who referred to picking up a series about a character with a terminal illness (“The Big C”) and joked, “I just want to make it clear that we have not picked up the ‘Leno Show’… or Conan O’Brien.”
Tassler, of course, doesn’t really need to concern herself with NBC. She was, however, much more to the point about the Alex O’Loughlin-starring organ donation medical drama “Three Rivers.” When asked if it was officially canceled, she replied, “You know what … yes.”
Sorry O’Loughlin, fans. RIP “Moonlight” and “Three Rivers.” Perhaps the third time’s the charm?
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Photo credit: Getty Images, CBS