The new executive lineup for NBC Universal announced by Comcast is telling in a number of ways, writes Bill Carter in The New York Times.
First, it shows that the cable division is the "crown jewel" of NBC Universal, according to Barclays Capital analyst James Ratcliffe. But the executive shifting also underlines the uncertainty facing the NBC network, Carter writes. With both NBC Universal Chief Executive Jeff Zucker and NBC Universal Television Entertainment Chairman Jeff Gaspin given no role in the new structure, it signals Comcast had "no caution about trying to rebuild NBC Entertainment," Carter writes.
Although Gaspin had only one development cycle under his belt, "That was apparently enough to convince Comcast executives they needed yet another new approach to find some solution to the long run of failure at NBC in prime time. NBC executives have privately estimated that the entertainment division is losing $300 million a year or more," the story says.
In tapping former Showtime executive Robert Greenblatt to run NBC, Carter writes, "Comcast was essentially shrugging off another year of new program development." The article notes that Greenblatt will be largely working with the 125 scripts for new series ordered under Gaspin’s command.