“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.