The fact is, the secret plans were drawn up in 2005-2006. When I published that column, Jeff Zucker was on his way in, and Bob Wright was on his way out. And now several outlets are reporting that Comcast is kicking the NBC tires. What they want, specifically, are Bravo, USA, Syfy and Oxygen — not necessarily NBC or Universal Studios.
But Comcast ‘wasn’t the only conglomerate interested ‘in NBC Universal, according to the 2005 plan. Time Warner would have come in as well to to take the film ‘portion, and kept the ‘Universal banner and Focus Features. Warners would have also gotten NBC, and assimilated NBC News and MSNBC into ‘CNN.
“If Jeff Immelt can get the money from Comcast, he’ll take it,” says an NBC insider.
There is nothing worse right now in TV land than the Jay Leno debacle on NBC. Leno, a great comedian, has been stuffed into a box without holes. He can’t breathe. The audience doesn’t want him at 10 p.m. They want hourlong dramas, and not just the ones produced by Dick Wolf. Where is the 2009 version of “Hill Street Blues,” “St. Elsewhere,” “LA Law,” “ER”? Jay’s show may be cheaper to produce, but at what cost?