NBC Holds Another Virtual Upfront Event, Boosted By '30 Rock' Cast

Think those virtual upfront TV network presentations are over with? 

Doesn’t look like it. Now, NBC is holding another “upfront” event -- this time around a special “30 Rock” reunion in mid-July to reveal new programming for the upcoming TV season. 

NBC calls it a special upfront, even boosted by the show’s main cast -- including Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Tracy Morgan, Jane Krakowski and Jack McBrayer.

This presentation will be run on July 16, ad-free on NBC. Linda Yaccarrino, chairman of advertising and partnerships at NBCUniversal, will also be featured.

The showcase will be rebroadcast across USA, Bravo, E!, Oxygen, Syfy and CNBC, as well as available to stream on Peacock on July 17 at 9 p.m.

So, it's a historically business-focused event being aired on a broadcast network.

Some of this isn’t exactly new. In the past, many TV networks have aired these promotional TV shows touting new season programming -- also typically in the somewhat lower-viewed summertime periods.



These have been typically consumer-focused events. Many of these special half-hour/hour promo shows run concurrently with a regular rise in summertime on-air ad promos for new fall shows.

While the NBC TV show about the new season programming will be aired mid-July -- with what we assume will be lots of video clips of new shows -- NBC and ABC have already disclosed some fall programming scheduling specifics this week.

The difference here is that it comes about a month after the usual timing of fall new programming/scheduling news that happens in mid-May.

Much of this is because virtually all TV productions has been suspended since early March, given the pandemic. There continues to be delays. Will networks be ready?

Some of this feels like network vamping. The real action for many comes on the business side. The wait is on for crucial media-buying deals major agencies have yet to make and/or complete in the upfront ad market -- the media buying of a full season’s worth of programming.

The virtual TV business season would seem be have more fresh episodes to come.

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