PILOT PANIC: NBC Eying Early Renewals?
NBC Renews ‘Revolution,’ ‘Chicago Fire,’ ‘Parenthood,’ ‘Grimm’, ‘Law & Order: SVU’
So far, three of the broadcast networks — CBS, Fox and the CW — have awarded early renewals to their strongest series, while ABC and NBC have yet to make any moves on that front. There is speculation that NBC may jump in the fray with early pickups to some of its strongest series. Among those rumored to get an early jump on next season are the network’s flagship reality series The Voice, top scripted series Revolution and solid Friday performer Grimm, which also received an early second-season order last year. The renewals could come as early as tomorrow, following the latest set of ratings for The Voice and Revolution, both of which made a strong return to the schedule two weeks ago. Meanwhile, Grimm just logged another finish as the top-rated scripted series on Friday. I hear a deal for a second-season renewal of Revolution was put in motion several months ago when NBC reduced the first-season order to the futuristic drama by two episodes. Meanwhile, I hear Grimm is already preparing for third season, releasing a large number of low- and mid-level writers early than normal in preparation for staffing. Beyond those three series, also certain to return at NBC are comedy Parks And Recreation, which also is reading writers for next season, and Chicago Fire, whose pickup may once again be tied to that for NBC’s other Dick Wolf-produced drama, Law & Order: SVU, which is looking to re-sign star Mariska Hargitay. This year, there may be another wrinkle to the Chicago Fire-SVU renewal related to the planned Chicago Fire spinoff. Elsewhere at NBC, Parenthood also appears on track for a renewal, with Go On and The New Normal looking hopeful after getting a boost from the return of The Voice. Midseason comedy 1600 Penn and sophomore drama Smash are dead, while comedy series Community, Whitney and Guys With Kids are heavily on the bubble. There has been speculation that, like last year, NBC may opt to keep one multi-camera comedy for next season, with Guys having a slight edge. It is produced by soon-to-be-host of The Tonight Show Jimmy Fallon. Community appears unlikely to cheat death yet again with its ratings hitting a series of lows, though there is a glimmer of hope. As for midseason drama Hannibal, it is still early as the series just premiered last week to OK not great numbers, and given its lower license fee, NBC will likely give it time.