NBC on Saturday announced plans for four new “event” projects, including a four-hour miniseries about likely 2016 presidential contender Hillary Clinton starring Oscar nominee Diane Lane in the title role.
Also in the Peacock pipeline: Remakes of Rosemary’s Baby and Stephen King’s The Tommyknockers, and a Mark Burnett-produced limited series about the “landing of the pilgrims at Plymouth Rock,” NBC Chairman Robert Greenblatt revealed to reporters at the Television Critics Assoc. summer press tour on Saturday.
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Other highlights/key soundbites form NBC’s exec session:
* “Nobody’s more frustrated with shows like The New Normal and Go On not returning to the schedule than me and maybe [NBC president] Jennifer [Salke],” Greenblatt conceded of the cancelled comedies. “You have to make those really difficult calls for what you can renew at what rating.” Added Salke: “The tolerance for shows struggling is shorter than it’s ever been. It’s frustrating that you can’t take the time to nurture a show the way you might want to.”
* NBC’s reality chief stopped short of announcing a Celebrity Apprentice renewal, saying the show is in the “restocking of the celebrity pond” (i.e. casting) phase. Regarding doing business with outspoken lightning rod Donald Trump, “We live in a country where free speech is supported. He is in the business of creating his own headlines and we are in the business of creating ours.”
* Greenblatt said it’s his hope that outgoing Tonight Show host Jay Leno will “still be a presence on the network… We’ve been having conversations with Jay. We have various ideas. Nothing would make us happier, a la Bob Hope, to have him be part of the network. I’m really hoping we can do that post-February.”