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NBC U enlists a pinch hitter

Weisman to report to Zucker, starts with 'Today'

Emmy-winning producer Michael Weisman has signed on as NBC Universal TV Group’s first-ever utility player, lending a hand as an executive producer throughout the company.

Weisman, whose credits include stints at NBC Sports, Fox Sports and CBS Sports, will be handed assignments by NBC U TV Group prexy Jeff Zucker, to whom he’ll report. First up, Weisman will work with new “Today” show exec producer Jim Bell on the Peacock breakfastcast.

Zucker “described it as being a troubleshooter, to take advantage of my experience, particularly in live TV,” Weisman said. “Jeff’s attitude is, you can never have a deep enough bench … I told Jeff that I love NBC, and he gave me an opportunity to work closely with him.”

The two executives have known each other since the mid-’80s, when Weisman — then exec producing NBC’s coverage of the 1988 Seoul Summer Olympic Games — hired Zucker, straight out of Harvard, as a researcher.

Zucker brought Weisman back to the Peacock to exec produce NBC-distribbed talker “The Jane Pauley Show.”

“Although it was a (ratings) disappointment for us, it was a good experience, and I got to work closely with Jeff again,” Weisman said.

Beyond “Today,” Weisman will likely work with NBC Sports’ Dick Ebersol on coverage of the 2006 Torino Winter Olympic Games, he said. Then it’s up to Zucker to place Weisman around NBC U.

“Jeff will decide where I’m best suited to help,” he said. “MSNBC, CNBC, wherever, to take advantage of my thirtysomething years in the business … Anything short of working in the commissary I’m excited about.”

Weisman, who’s scored 22 Emmys through the years, will remain based in New York. His credits include 18 World Series, nine Super Bowls and the Seoul and 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games. He’s also handled the French Open, Wimbledon and the NCAA basketball championships, in addition to network and cable specials, reality shows, musicvideos and documentaries.

“Michael’s background is so strong and his experience so great that he will be an added set of eyes and ears, helpful in so may different places, from CNBC to MSNBC to NBC News, and to our network and cable entertainment properties,” Zucker said.

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