Don’t miss TV Week’s interview with Matt Lauer. Here’s a highlight:
| TVWeek: Those of us whose job it is to over-think things, look at the ‘GMA’ series on the seven new wonders of the world and the coincidentally timed ‘Today’ series on the religions of the world, and think nobody wants to take any chances.|
Mr. Lauer: That’s an interesting way to put it. I view it as we’re all struggling to find the next big thing. You go to the things that work, and you hope they continue to work, but it doesn’t mean you’re not looking for the next ‘Where in the World.’ There have been imitations. I’m flattered by it. I think they’re not very well veiled imitations. We take notice of that. It tells us that they’re also struggling to find the next big thing.
But I do feel as if some of those things are our franchises and [we’ll] continue to do them well because we have a bit of an institutional knowledge on them. Because ‘Where in the World’ has become such a franchise, there are people lining up to sponsor it. That’s a very tempting thing for a show. That’s gravy for the network. You don’t do something like that even for the bump in the ratings if it’s going to cost you millions and millions of dollars. Money’s tight these days.