'Without a Trace' creator signs seven-figure pact
“Without a Trace” creator Hank Steinberg has found a new home at NBC Universal TV Studio, which has inked a pricey three-year overall deal with the scribe.
High-seven-figure deal is believed to be NBC U TV’s richest for a writer-producer without show services attached. Steinberg, whose pact begins in June, will focus full-time on developing new projects for the Peacock studio.
Steinberg moves to NBC U from Warner Bros. TV, where he’s been based since 2002. At Warners, Steinberg exec produces and acts as showrunner on critically acclaimed drama “The Nine” for ABC.
Steinberg co-created “The Nine” with his sister, K.J. Steinberg. Currently on hiatus, “The Nine” earned critical raves but struggled in the ratings. ABC plans to relaunch the show later this midseason.
Steinberg launched his career in series TV at Warner Bros., where he created “Without a Trace” for the studio and Jerry Bruckheimer’s TV shingle.
“Obviously, it was not an easy decision to leave a place where I have been fortunate to have had a lot of success,” Steinberg said. “I can’t begin to say how much I appreciated working with them.”
Insiders said the parting was amicable but that NBC ultimately presented a higher offer (pegged at around $3 million a year).
Steinberg also was impressed by the recent string of successes at NBC, which has scored the season’s top breakout hit, “Heroes,” and critical plaudits for frosh entries such as “Friday Night Lights.”
“I felt that I was interested in what NBC Universal is doing,” Steinberg said. “They’re taking chances with what they’re doing, and producing the kinds of shows I’d love to be involved with — complicated, sophisticated drama on the cutting edge.”
NBC U TV Studio prexy Angela Bromstad said she’d been anxious to strike a deal with Steinberg.
“We’ve had our eye on Hank for years,” she said. “Now we’re so happy to have the opportunity to sit down with him and talk about our respective goals and to have this creative marriage. We can’t wait to start developing with him.”
NBC Entertainment prexy Kevin Reilly said he looked forward “to a fruitful partnership with Hank at NBC.”
“I worked with Hank when he just started working in TV, and I was really impressed with his creativity and instincts,” Reilly said. “Since then he has consistently demonstrated that his talents result in quality television.”
Steinberg said he was looking to develop new character-driven shows — “but with a hook” — for NBC.
“I’m very interested in continuing to do sophisticated drama, with a spine to it,” he said. “I feel pretty confident that what I come up with will be appropriate for NBC. And there’s opportunity on their schedule as well.”
Steinberg continues to serve as an exec producer on “Without a Trace,” although he’s no longer active day-to-day on the show. His other credits include HBO movie “61*” and FX telepic “RFK.”
Steinberg is repped by Endeavor.