NBC Stations Firm Daytime Schedule

Sep 30, 2007  •  Post A Comment

With “Bonnie Hunt” officially on the schedule for NBC-owned television stations, and “Deal or No Deal” waiting in the wings, the broadcasting group’s daytime schedule is firming up for years to come.
NBC this season extended its hit morning program “Today” to four hours, and last week signed Bonnie Hunt to a two-year agreement. It also renewed “Ellen” and “Extra,” cementing key time slots. It’s almost certain that NBC’s owned-and-operated stations will pick up NBC Universal’s “Deal or No Deal,” adding another familiar franchise to the lineup.
“NBC was able to aggressively go into the marketplace and acquire a nationally branded show in ‘Deal’ as well as get the production team that created and produces ‘Ellen’ to create a companion show,” said Bill Carroll, VP and director of programming for Katz Media. “They have now found a way to fill some key holes on their schedule.”
With “Deal” and Warner Bros.’ “Bonnie” on the way in, two of three candidates are at risk to be dropped from the lineup before the 2008 season: “Martha Stewart,” “iVillage” and rookie game show “Merv Griffin’s Crosswords.” None of those programs have deals guaranteeing carriage for the 2008 season.
Station sources say that of the three, “Stewart” is the most likely to be safe given the brand name and the fact that NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution gets paid by Ms. Stewart’s company to distribute the show. “Crosswords” could potentially be paired with a run of “Deal,” but the series started slowly, garnering a 0.8 rating nationally, and NBC could have other plans for “Deal.”
“We’re very pleased to extend our relationship with Warner Bros., ensuring our stations continue to receive a steady supply of quality programming from one of our most valued and trusted partners,” NBC Television Stations President John Wallace said of the “Bonnie” pickup. “As the daytime syndication marketplace continues to evolve, it’s critical that we have strong creative partners, like Warner Bros., who share our goals.”
A potential “Deal or No Deal” game show, hosted by Howie Mandel, is already being viewed as an opportunity for the NBC station group to bolster ratings. As a half-hour Monday-to-Friday show, the game show is already being viewed by analysts as a potential mate with NBC’s “Access Hollywood” in the coveted access time periods from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. That’s a possibility, putting “Deal” in a high-profile slot, rather than playing it as a double run of two episodes of the series during daytime.
With “Bonnie,” NBC made a two-year commitment to the new syndicated talk show for fall 2008 to be hosted by comedy writer, producer, director and performer Bonnie Hunt. The program will be produced by Bob & Alice Productions and paraMedia, in association with Telepictures Productions.
It has been cleared on each of the NBC owned-and-operated stations, with the exception of Philadelphia. Ms. Hunt, Jim Paratore and Don Lake will serve as executive producers.
“Bonnie Hunt is an iconic personality and a proven entertainer with a distinctive comedic voice and point of view,” said Telepictures Productions President Hilary Estey McLoughlin. “She is the quintessential everywoman with an authenticity, likability and relatability that will connect with the daytime audience.”


  1. Without a doubt iVillage should be dropped from NBCs daytime lineup. Not sure what it was doing on TV in either incarnations in the first place.

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