KB: 360 (12.9.08)

TV

Lots of changes at NBC. Someone seriously needs to devise a plan to revive the once proud peacock. The only thing the network offers me is The Office, 30 Rock, and Friday Night Lights.

Among other changes at NBC, the network will actually retain the services of Jay Leno and give him a nightly 10pm time slot. This comes after Conan replaces Leno on the Tonight Show and former SNL cast member Jimmy Fallon takes Conan’s spot. These things I do not understand.

Meanwhile, ABC continues to put out real shows. They are currently developing a pilot based on the Fables comic.

Anyone catch TNT’s Leverage this past weekend? It did well ratings-wise so expect it to stick around.

The Hollywood Reporter talks to Kiefer Sutherland.

An early review of the pilot for Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse.

Movies

I don’t think 47 Ronin sounds like a bad movie. But I think having it star Keanu Reeves is a bad idea.

True-life YouTube romance to be turned into a documentary.

Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard regain Oscar eligibility for The Dark Knight.

Speaking of The Dark Knight, USA Today offered up a pair of stories about director Christopher Nolan. In the first, he again mentions his trepidation with making a third installment while also talking about some of the extras in the new DVD. In the second, Nolan describes some of his favorite scenes from the movie.

In another interview with MTV, Harrison Ford mentions a project with JJ Abrams.

A little info on Bourne 4.

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20 thoughts on “KB: 360 (12.9.08)

  1. Although never having seen an episode of FNL, I agree that all NBC offers are two of the best comedies on the major networks (why they gave Scrubs to ABC is beyond me). And I actually find myself drawn to Saturday Night Live again after a 15 year hiatus… It’s that time of year again, so go check out the SNL digital short “Dick in a Box” with Andy Samberg and Justin Timberlake. I’ve never laughed harder in all my life.

  2. Going to DVR the first 2 episodes of Leverage tonight (replay of Ep 1 and new ep) and see if it’s worth watching further.

  3. I meant to watch Leverage, but missed it. I heard good things. Does anyone know if the pilot is going to be re-run?

  4. Sounds like the networks are really struggling. But let’s be honest. The offerings this fall were really crappy.

    I can understand the big three going to where Fox and the CW are though in terms of broadcast time. The big question is how long CW lasts. The writing is on the wall…

  5. Among other changes at NBC, the network will actually retain the services of Jay Leno and give him a nightly 10pm time slot. This comes after Conan replaces Leno on the Tonight Show and former SNL cast member Jimmy Fallon takes Conan’s spot. These things I do not understand.

    I wonder what the Leno show will be? Last I checked he was getting 2-3 million viewers a night, which is great for late night, but hideous for prime time. I doubt it will last long, but I don’t like him so I’m probably biased.

    Meanwhile, ABC continues to put out real shows. They are currently developing a pilot based on the Fables comic.

    Woah. Woah I said. That’s great news.

  6. The ratings were pretty bad, SG. Really bad in fact. I could blame the network had they kept messing with the time-slot like Fox did with Arrested Development but for the most part, they left it alone.

    jjohnsen, I’m not sure what they’re thinking with Leno. I don’t think his following is strong enough to carry a primetime show 4 or 5 days a week. What would happen if they paid megabucks to Stewart/Colbert to come over? I would still guess the ratings wouldn’t be there.

  7. Here is a little more info on “The Jay Leno Show.”

    “‘We are not trying to compete,’ Mr. Graboff said.”

    At least they’re being realistic.

  8. I saw the first episode of Leverage early this summer when it got leaked. It was pretty good. Even has the ditz from Coupling (UK) on it.

    Don’t forget Chuck and Life on NBC!

  9. What would happen if they paid megabucks to Stewart/Colbert to come over? I would still guess the ratings wouldn’t be there.

    I’m sure they wouldn’t. The reason shows like Colbert are considered hits are because they do pretty great numbers for Comedy Central, just like Leno is pretty great for a show that late at night. The problem is advertisers aren’t going to pay for those numbers in prime time, they want four to five times that amount.

  10. As the major network audience continues to erode and dissipate 2-3 million is nothing to sneeze at. On the right night and the right demographic that could guarantee a show’s survival for quite some time, especially if the show wasn’t very expensive to produce.

  11. It’s less about ratings than profits. The Tonight Show is cheap to produce. Yeah you won’t get the big ratings. But if the cost is 1/10th of what 5 days of prime time programming is but gets say 1/5 the ratings guess what? You are making more money.

  12. The Tonight Show gets about 5 million viewers per night. Now, that number erodes dramatically from the monologue to the sketch to the first guest to the musical act, but it’s a solid audience that actually rivals many primetime shows.

    The ratings cutoff for a scripted prime-time show is about a 4.0 (1 ratings point = 1.3 million viewers). This can vary depending on audience, but its a pretty reliable number for when a show is renewed vs. cancelled. It’s about what Eli Stone has averaged.

    While profitability is key, media buyers are interested in “hot” shows, shows people are talking about. It’s a myth that ratings alone decide both the rate and if a show is bought or not. The demand to be in The Office, 30 Rock, American Idol, and the Daily Show is high so networks can demand a higher cost per point on their rate. If demand is low, media buyers are going to overlook it regardless of audience size.

    So Leno’s show has to have buzz. I don’t really have a problem with the idea, but I don’t think Leno’s the guy that’s going to be able to get people to flip over from what’s on the other networks. So we’ll just have to see.

  13. The local NBC affiliates are also going to HATE this idea. Having a small lead-in to the 11pm local news is going to cause some pain as this is their largest source of revenue.

    It’s already happened in our market where it only took a couple of years for the ABC affiliate’s local news to overtake NBC’s. And the only thing this can be attributed to is smaller primetime audiences.

  14. I’d lay good odds, Time, that some might try to compete with the Fox affiliates and move their news up an hour. We’ll see if NBC lets them.

    Your point about it not just being audience numbers is good. Audience makeup obviously matters a lot as do some intangibles. Of course that makes the current economy that much worse. Companies are going to target narrower. And automakers, the traditional “big spenders” may not be spending as much.

  15. Re: Eli Stone – well, what did they expect, putting it against two long-running powerhouses like SVU and Without a Trace? I’ve got two channel streams on my Tivo and I still couldn’t record it!

  16. BTW – you didn’t mention the Last Avatar casting.

    I was surprised to find myself a fan of the show after it was mentioned here. (I have all the episodes on my aTV) I normally don’t like that kind of stuff.

    Of course having Shyamalan on the project makes me leery. It’s been a while since he had a good film and nothing he’s done is anything like this.

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