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Network People Speak


 

The Hollywood Reporter has some Q&As with network representatives on their plans for the end of this season and the start of next season (pilot-wise).

CBS’s Nina Tassler says they’re going to continue doing what they’ve been doing (crime procedurals and comedies). One thing I kind of like about her interviews is that, while she has some pardonable smugness about the network’s current success, she talks in mostly plain English, rather than using meaningless jargon like…

ABC’s Steve MacPherson, whose interview has so much network double-speak that you’d expect him to start saying proactive and paradigm. Sample quote, after he’s asked about ABC’s firing of showrunners from V and Flashforward: “We look for someone who has a vision, is collaborative, able to maintain their artistic integrity while understanding our audience, and sees the value in the longevity and future of the series. Also having a strong team with complementary strengths is key.” He does lapse into something resembling English when talking about the possibility that ABC might pick up The New Adventures of Old Christine if CBS cancels it. I hope they do; it’s still funny and deserves an extra year or two.

The CW’s Dawn Ostroff talks about the network’s shows and argues that just because they’re picking up more genre/action shows doesn’t mean they’re abandoning their core 18-34 female audience (though she also notes that “the CW is more boy-friendly than most people think”).

NBC’s Angela Bromstad is understandably vague about a number of things, with a lot of “I cannot confirm or deny” lines about the future of their modestly-rated cult shows. But she has some fairly interesting things to say about what she’s doing to rebuild the network’s prime-time lineup, and a good quote about why it usually doesn’t work to imitate the last big hit (e.g. the various Lost clones): “you have to fight the trend to imitate because that’s usually not going to work; you have to find the next new thing. It’s tough to be ‘what isn’t on’ because there is so much on.”

Fox’s Kevin Reilly may have the toughest job of all, even tougher than NBC’s. American Idol is still a huge asset for the network that offsets other problems, but without Cowell, it might not do the trick. A lot of the network’s shows are in decline — like 24, which is on the bubble now — and as Reilly admits, they’ve done a poor job of non-animated comedy development. He doesn’t put it this way, of course, but with a few good breaks for NBC’s new shows, I could see NBC rising while Fox falls next season.

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