CBS at TCA: Executive Session Live-Blog - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

CBS at TCA: Executive Session Live-Blog

July 17, 2014 by  

CBS is kicking off its Television Critics Association day with an executive session featuring CBS Entertainment Chairman, Nina Tassler.

Follow along for everything she has to say…

8:58 AM: We’re starting a little early with a sizzle reel highlighting everything CBS has done over the past year.

9:02 AM: Tassler notes since she was last here, they’ve announced Thursday night football, Letterman will retire, Colbert is coming, and ZOO was picked up.

9:03 AM: “I’ll admit it: I’m still really pissed about THE GOOD WIFE,” Tassler says of the Emmy snub.

9:04 AM: “I think ELEMENTARY is one of the best shows on television…Jonny [Lee] Miller’s performance is Emmy-worthy,” Tassler says.

9:06 AM: “Our competitors may call it old-skewing: we call [NCIS] a billion dollar franchise,” Tassler says. She also notes their Facebook page has over 19 million likes, and it’s the most watched show in the world.

9:08 AM: “Every season we have shows that work and shows that don’t work; shows that have traction and those that don’t…it’s a part of the ecosystem,” Tassler says of BAD TEACHER and FRIENDS WITH BETTER LIVES’ cancellations. She points out it may have seemed like a quick pull for people outside of the network, but they’re hearing pitches for things beyond what airs well before shows even debut.

9:10 AM: “I just love being able to answer these questions year after year,” Tassler cracks about TBBT contract talks. She is confident the deals will work out.

9:11 AM: “We had to wait 14 years to get it to this point, I don’t think waiting a little longer is going to kill anybody,” Tassler says of BATTLE CREEK not airing in fall.

9:12 AM: “I think some of the lessons we learned are some of the lessons we apply to any show, whether it’s a spinoff or not: the storytelling, the casting, the production values,” Tasslery says of HIMYD. She says she’d love to work with those people again, but some of the casting didn’t seem to work on this.

9:14 AM: Tassler says the Emmy nomination process should be looked at, since logistically, shows that air 22 episodes have a lot more things to deal with versus shows that have 7 or 8 episodes.

9:15 AM: “He came and pitched us BATTLE CREEK, and then he went across town and pitched another little show [BREAKING BAD] that took up his time,” Tassler says. She says that years ago when they first picked up the pilot, it was a cast-contingent pilot, and they couldn’t get the right casting. Now Vince Gilligan is free, and they found the right cast.

9:17 AM: “You have to make your decision based on the content,” Tassler says of picking up THE MILLERS versus FRIENDS WITH BETTER LIVES. She thinks they have more things to actually work with on that show, versus FWBL.

9:20 AM: “We always look to add more diverse characters to shows if they’re not there,” Tassler says when asked about the whiteness of the new fall comedy shows. She points out that Halle Berry is the lead of EXTANT, and they’re working hard to bring diversity behind the camera, as well.

“We have to look at making the best choices, hiring the best actors, and if we don’t get the level of diversity in the fall, we look for opportunity to add [later on],” Tassler says.

9:24 AM: “A lot of people are very seduced by the romance of single-cam shows,” Tassler says of multi-cam (which CBS excels at) vs. single-cam. She mentions their audience is drawn to the kind of comedy multi-cam shows do.

9:28 AM: They’ve started having prelim conversations with Colbert about him taking over for Letterman. They don’t know when it will launch, but they’re having convos about the format, whether he’ll have a band, etc. The 12:30 slot is a bigger question mark, because they don’t even know if they will keep that slot for a traditional talk show format.

9:30 AM: “We have a very, very big star in David Shore…I don’t want to diminish David’s role,” Tassler says of David Shore actually running BATTLE CREEK. She says that Gilligan’s involvement is always welcome, as long as Shore is comfortable.

9:32 AM: Tassler says that their goal is to always work with the best of the best, but what they’re also now looking at is having their shows go the distance: “Does this show have the creative bones to go into the 50 years a CSI can have?” She points to something like TGW, which she would pit against any other show on television, and also points to the big syndication deal they got for it. Same with ELEMENTARY. So they’re looking for life beyond just airing on TV.

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