You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

NBC Universal restructure only preliminary

More permanent plan will probably be issued in 2011

After months of speculation — capped by a flurry of rumors over the past 10 days — Comcast’s new NBC U structure is expected to be announced this week.

But that won’t be the end of it. What we’ll see is the “beta” version of what the newly merged company will ultimately look like.

That’s partly because of the timing. With NBC currently in the middle of development season, incoming NBC entertainment topper Bob Greenblatt won’t necessarily be looking to make changes too quickly, at least on the programming side.

There may be other arenas where he can make his mark first. (New ABC Entertainment topper Paul Lee has taken a similar tack over at the Alphabet net.)

Meanwhile, with regulatory approval still on the horizon, there are many moving parts yet to be determined. That’s why many folks inside NBC Universal expect a second, more comprehensive restructuring at some point in 2011.

While former Showtime Entertainment prexy Greenblatt’s hire has been assumed for some time, speculation heated up over the weekend that Comcast Entertainment chief Ted Harbert may return to the network game.

To further illustrate how fluid the situation has been, Harbert has, in the past few months, sometimes been talked up for a major role at the merged company; at other times it’s looked like his job wasn’t changing.

But Harbert is now being bruited as a frontrunner for the NBC business/operations job. Comcast had also approached CBS’ Nancy Tellem and Fox’s Tony Vinciquerra, among others, at one time or another for the gig.

But Vinciquerra quickly declined, while Tellem, who formerly had oversight of entertainment at CBS, wasn’t interested in a job with a smaller domain than her old one.

With it looking increasingly likely that Comcast Entertainment networks E!, Style and G4 will be split between Bonnie Hammer and Lauren Zalaznick (both of whom are keeping their current domains), it probably made sense to find a new job for Harbert.

Harbert hails from the entertainment programming world, having served as president of both ABC Entertainment and NBC Studios. But as CEO of Comcast Entertainment, Harbert’s focus has become much more business oriented — making him a possible candidate for the New York-based job (which has been compared to the NBC TV Network president job once held by Randy Falco and Neil Braun).

NBC U TV topper Jeff Gaspin remains a wild card, as the exec has not yet been informed of his fate.

As previously noted, incoming CEO Steve Burke is set to meet with execs this week in Universal City to iron out the new setup. An announcement could be accelerated to as soon as Monday, perhaps to quiet all the incessant rumors.

At NBC, this week’s announcement will, at the very least, make it more clear who’s in charge. But there’s still much more to come.

More TV

  • Ofanny Choi

    Ofanny Choi to Head Celestial Tiger, Replacing Todd Miller

    Veteran TV executive Ofanny Choi has been promoted to president of Celestial Tiger Entertainment. She replaces CEO Todd Miller, who will leave the company. Backed by Saban Capital, Lionsgate and Malaysia’s Astro Overseas, Hong Kong-based Celestial Tiger operates a bouquet of Asian pay-TV channels. It also produces original production for its bouquet of channels. Having [...]

  • Alicia Keys23rd Annual Hollywood Film Awards,

    Alicia Keys Will Return as 2020 Grammy Awards Host

    Alicia Keys will return as the host of the 62nd annual Grammy Awards. Keys hosted the awards show for the first time in 2019. She will become the third woman and the first female music star to host the show twice. Keys has won 15 Grammy awards and is second only to Paul Simon as [...]

  • AMERICAN HORROR STORY: 1984 -- Pictured:

    'American Horror Story' Recap: '1984's' 'Final Girl' Revealed

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Final Girl,” the finale episode of “American Horror Story: 1984.” The final episode of “American Horror Story: 1984” is appropriately called “The Final Girl,” a reference to the term given to that one (usually virginal) young woman who manages to survive the massacre in most [...]

  • Lady Antebellum and Halsey53rd Annual CMA

    Halsey Puts the Extra Lady in Lady Antebellum in Elegant CMA Awards Medley

    Halsey is increasingly proving herself a woman for all seasons in her varied TV appearances and awards show collaborations, and Wednesday’s CMA Awards telecast was no exception, as she ingratiated herself into the country vocal trio Lady Antebellum for some flawless four-part harmony on a medley of two of their respective hits. She and Lady [...]

  • The Bachelor

    TV News Roundup: ABC Announces Premiere Date for 'The Bachelor' Season 24

    In today’s TV news roundup, ABC announced the premiere date for “The Bachelor” Season 24, while Showtime set a date for Eddie Griffin’s new comedy special. CASTING Freeform announced that it has cast the pilot for “Last Summer.“ Chiara Aurelia will star as Jeanette and Mika Abdalla will star as Kate in this “unconventional thriller” about [...]

  • Mandalorian Pose Stranger Things

    'The Mandalorian,' 'Pose,' 'Stranger Things' Among Nominees for Top TV Publicity Campaign

    The Disney Plus series “The Mandalorian,” three other streaming series, and two FX series have been nominated by Hollywood union publicists for the year’s top publicity campaign. “Catch 22,” “Fosse/Verdon,” “Pose,” “Stranger Things” and “When They See Us” picked up the other nominations. The nominees for the International Cinematographers Guild Publicists’ Maxwell Weinberg Award for [...]

  • Paradigm's Liz Morentin portrait session in

    Paradigm's Executive VP of Communications Liz Morentin to Exit Agency

    Liz Morentin is stepping down from her role as executive vice president of communications at Paradigm, Variety has learned. According to an individual with knowledge of the situation, Morentin’s departure was amicable and she will stay on at the agency through the end of the year to help with the transition. No replacement has been named at [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content