NBC executives talked about the state of the network at the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour, and they addressed the futures of "Community" and "Smash," changes to "The Voice" and the departure of Ann Curry from "Today." Here are the highlights:

  • Robert Greenblatt, chairman of NBC entertainment, didn't sound too worried about airing "The Voice" twice a year. "Almost every reality franchise does two cycles a season, and one could argue that 'American Idol' and 'X Factor' are the same show in many respects -- one in the fall, one in the spring. We're obviously cautious," he said about expanding the show throughout the year, but executives said that they've toyed with the format to make it more exciting. Top reality executive Paul Telegdy wasn't specific about those changes, but indicated that in the new season of the singing show, "the famous red chairs" and the button-pushing would continue to appear even later in the season. "We've found exciting ways to keep the competition between coaches going through the latter stages of the competition," Telegdy said.
  • Jennifer Salke, the president of NBC Entertainment, got a question about Ryan Murphy's new show, "The New Normal," which has already been the subject of some protests. "He is a guy that pushes the envelope," Salke said of Murphy. But she added that the show, which is about a gay couple and their surrogate, is the "Glee" creator's "love letter to families." "It's by no means centered on just the gay couple in the middle," Salke said, and the title isn't meant to indicate what's normal and what isn't. "A normal family isn't a gay family, it's just a different family, and I think we see that around us every day," Salke said.
  • Greenblatt only briefly addressed the controversy that erupted over the ouster of Ann Curry at "Today." "I respectfully yield to the NBC News Division [when it comes to that topic]," Greenblatt said. "My heart goes out to those people, including Ann and everybody who went through that transition." In any event, he's not worried about "Today's" future and thinks broadcasting from the Olympics will keep the show at the forefront of the morning pack.
  • Is "Go On" just a "Community" retread -- which seems like an odd direction to go in, given "Community's" ratings problems? Salke said that its setting in a grief-therapy group is "less specific" and "has tons of heart," so she's not worried about the comparison.
  • Greenblatt said that he was "inordinately" proud of "Smash" and recognized that it had a huge array of production challenges, given how much original music and choreography it featured. Where the show didn't fulfill its potential was in the "arcing of the storylines and the consistency" of those stories, Greenblatt noted. In other words, if the show was going in a particular direction with a character, "Smash" needed to continue "in a really interesting way with that arc. I think we were going back and forth with some things." He wouldn't address whether the much-mocked son of Debra Messing's character, Leo, would be ditched, but he said that all characters are looked at in terms of whether they and their storylines have outlived their usefulness.
  • Executives noted that the network is premiering some shows during or right after the Olympics and using the sporting event as a promotional platform for new shows, many of which will be available on multiple digital platforms as well. "We feel like we have to make as much noise with our programming as we can and get as many eyeballs as we can," Salke said. Having said that, Greenblatt noted that NBC finished last season third in the important 18-49 demographic. He said that the 2003-2004 season was the last time NBC finished above fourth.

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  • 1600 Penn

    Benjamin Stockham as Xander, Martha MacIsaac as Becca (seated), Bill Pullman as President Dale Gilchrist (seated), Amara Miller as Marigold, Josh Gad as Skip, Jenna Elfman as Emily Gilchrist (seated), Andre Holland as Marshall Malloy

  • 1600 Penn

    Amara Miller as Marigold; Jenna Elfman as First Lady Emily Gilchrist; Bill Pullman as President Dale Gilchrist; Martha MacIsaac as Becca; Josh Gad as Skip; Benjamin Stockham as Xander

  • Go On

    Allison Miller as Carrie, Khary Payton as Don, Suzy Nakamura as Yolanda, Matthew Perry as Ryan, Laura Benanti as Lauren, Julie White as Anne

  • Go On

    Matthew Perry as Ryan King

  • Revolution

    Tracy Spiridakos as Charlie, Anna Lise Phillips as Maggie , Zak Orth as Aaron

  • Revolution

    JD Pardo as Nate, Tracy Spiridakos as Charlie, Zak Orth as Aaron, Anna Lise Phillips as Maggie

  • Revolution

    Billy Burke as Miles

  • Revolution

    Anna Lise Phillips as Maggie, Graham Rogers as Danny, Tim Guiee as Ben, David Lyons as Bass Monroe, Billy Burke as Miles, Tracy Spiridakos as Charlie, Andrea Roth as Rachel, Maria Howell as Grace, JD Pardo as Nate, Zak Orth as Aaron, Giancarlo Esposito as Lt. Neville

  • The New Normal

    Ellen Barkin as Jane, Andrew Rannells as Bryan, Georgia King as Goldie, Bebe Wood as Shania, Justin Bartha as David

  • The New Normal

    Bebe Wood as Shania; Andrew Rannells as Bryan; Justin Bartha as David; Georgia King as Goldie

  • The New Normal

    Andrew Rannells as Bryan, Ellen Barkin as Jane, Nene Leakes as Rocky

  • Save Me

    Anne Heche as Beth

  • Save Me

    Anne Heche as Beth Waring

  • Save Me

    Heather Burns as Jenna, Alexandra Breckenridge as Carly, Michael Landes as Tom Waring, Anne Heche as Beth Waring, Madison Davenport as Emily Waring, Lamman Rucker as John

  • Chicago Fire

    Teri Reeves as Hallie, David Eigenberg as Christopher Hermann, Charlie Barnett as Peter Mills, Lauren German as Leslie Shay, Monica Raymund as Gabriella Dawson, Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide, Jesse Spencer as Matthew Casey, Eamonn Walker as Battalion Chief Walter Boden and Merle Dandridge as Kay Fitori

  • Deception

    Meagan Good as Joanna Locasto

  • Deception

    Meagan Good as Joanna Locasto

  • Deception

    Meagan Good as Joanna Locasto, Victor Garber as Robert Bowers

  • Deception

    Victor Garber as Robert Bowers, Meagan Good as Joanna Locasto, Katherine LaNasa as Sofia Bowers, Tate Donovan as Edward Bowers, Laz Alonso as Will Moreno

  • Guys With Kids

    Anthony Anderson as Gary, Tempestt Bledsoe as Marny

  • Guys With Kids

    Anthony Anderson as Gary, Jesse Bradford as Chris, Zach Cregger as Nick

  • Guys With Kids

    Jamie Lynn Sigler as Emily, Zach Cregger as Nick, Tempestt Bledsoe as Marny, Anthony Anderson as Gary, Sara Rue as Sheila, Jesse Bradford as Chris

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