NBC Holds Tightly to Conan, Says iTunes Could Destroy Video Biz

cob3.jpgDespite Jay Leno’s reported reluctance to leave The Tonight Show and his prolonged success in the time slot, NBC Universal President and CEO Jeff Zucker has reaffirmed that his successor, Conan O’Brien, will indeed be taking the reins in 2009. Leno continues to garner high ratings, which had led to speculation that the network would be looking to retain him longer than originally planned, despite having to pay a penalty to O’Brien upwards of 40 million, says AICN. Rest assured that after Tonight, Leno will remain on network TV in some capacity, either on NBC or a rival network – because as a whole, we either don’t like to be entertained, or will laugh at anything.

On the online front: now that they’ve cut ties with YouTube, and their relationship with iTunes set to end in the near future, NBC has launched a public beta of their video site, Hulu.com – offering programming from NBC and Fox, cable networks Bravo, E! Entertainment, FX, Sci Fi, USA – as well as studios Fox, MGM, Sony and Universal. Part of their now irreconcilable relationship with iTunes stemmed from Apple’s refusal to break from their flat rates for downloads when NBC wanted to “experiment” with a $2.99 charge for one show. “It didn’t matter which one it was,” said Zucker, “we made that offer for months and they said no.” He also said that NBC wanted a cut of iPod sales claiming that Apple “sold millions of dollars worth of hardware off the back of our content.” Further distancing the network, he added, “Apple has destroyed the music business. If we don’t take control on the video side, they’ll do the same” to video. (Via iLounge)

Posted by Ted Zee on October 30th 2007 | Home Page | 9 Comments Subscribe to this site's feed

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