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.
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.”
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* 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.”