NBC Universal President Jeff Zucker announced today that the network will stop spending money on scripted shows in the first hour of primetime (8PM to 9PM) as part of a 750 million dollar budget cutback. Zucker told the Wall Street Journal that advertising interest isn’t high enough to justify spending so much on scripted shows, so the network will air gameshows such as DEAL OR NO DEAL which cost far less to produce.
Since the MUST SEE TV heyday of the early to late 90’s, television viewers have been subjected to an endless list of FRIENDS and SEINFELD clones. THE SINGLE GUY, STARK RAVING MAD, COUPLING, VERONICA’S CLOSET, UNION SQUARE, BOSTON COMMON to name a few. Can you really blame the audience for disappearing? Here’s an idea Zucker – Why not produce quality television, and you’ll attract an audience — regardless of the time.