NBC Universal PR has been battling negative press around the re-shuffling of their late night line up since before the changes were even implemented.
This week, they’ve issued perhaps their most blunt statement regarding “The Jay Leno Show” which has seen low ratings and angered local affiliates who have seen large drop offs in audience with Leno as the lead in to their local newscasts.
Said the network in a statement, published by The Daily Beast:
“Jay Leno is one of the most compelling entertainers in the world today. As we have said all along, Jay’s show has performed exactly as we anticipated on the network. It has, however, presented some issues for our affiliates. Both Jay and the show are committed to working closely with them to find ways to improve the performance.”
Praise for Leno? Yes. But also an acknowledgment that things aren’t going according to plans. It will be interesting to see how the network messages around upcoming changes to their schedule, including rumors that Leno’s show will be canceled altogether. Those rumors, widely reported in the media, fueled the need for today’s statement.