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Posts Tagged ‘Michael Gartner’

‘Either Do What’s Necessary, Or Admit You’re Not Up To It’: The Other ‘Today’ Manifesto

today1991

The memo described in brutal detail the changes that needed to be made to NBC’s “Today.” Some of the show’s top talent were targeted: “this guy’s killing us and no one’s even trying to rein him in.” Of course, those words were written in 1989 by Bryant Gumbel, who was speaking of Willard Scott.

And yet it all sounds so much like this week’s dismissal of “Today” show GM Jamie Horowitz. Several insider accounts of the departure make reference to a “manifesto”, wherein the former ESPN producer described in detail what was wrong with “Today”, and how he intended to fix it. By all accounts, it was not warmly received:

A week ago, according to an informed source, Horowitz presented Turness with a written “manifesto” outlining his scheme; on reading it, she “took umbrage” and was horrified.

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NBC News Celebrates 20 Years of ‘Dateline’

“Dateline,” formerly known as “Dateline NBC”, will mark 20 years on the air with a primetime special next week.

The show’s host, Lester Holt will present highlights of the last 20 years, including new interviews from some of the most memorable stories: Jane Pauley‘s 2003 chat with Michael J. Fox about his Parkinson’s and Tom Brokaw‘s 2005 profile of Aron Ralston, the hiker featured in the film 127 Hours.

From big interviews to murder mysteries, to hidden-camera investigations and documentaries, the show has seen many adjustments over the years.

“‘Dateline’ has gone through many changes,” says Senior EP David Corvo, “but one thing that hasn’t changed is the loyalty and enthusiasm of its audience. We are grateful for that.”

“Dateline NBC” made its debut in 1992 and suffered a serious black eye a few months in. In November 1992, Dateline aired a report titled “Waiting to Explode” about GM pickups allegedly exploding upon impact during accidents due to the poor design of fuel tanks. “Dateline” set up a low speed accident showing the the fuel tank explode. But, unbeknownst to viewers, NBC producers rigged the truck with an incendiary device. GM filed an anti-defamation/libel lawsuit against NBC which was settled. Dateline’s EP and two other producers were dismissed and NBC News president Michael Gartner resigned under pressure.

Dateline’s 20th Anniversary Special airs Tuesday at 10pmET/PT, 9pmCT Tuesday night.