NBC Tries Mini-Movies to Hold Viewers
NEW YORK – The good news for Michael Richards, Carmen Electra and Tom Arnold is that they’ll be involved in new NBC productions going on the air this fall.
The bad news is the productions will last only a minute, and they will be shown at a time many viewers are trying to fit in bathroom breaks.
NBC said it will make a series of 1-minute movies, designed to be shown during the breaks between programs. They’ll work as cliffhangers, with 30 seconds shown during one hour and the final 30 seconds an hour later.
Richards, formerly of “Seinfeld,” Arnold and Electra have agreed to either act in or lend their voices to one of the 10 new segments being filmed.
“We know that contemporary audiences are primed for this format and we have provided a means for creative people who are ready to deliver in 60 seconds or less,” NBC Entertainment President Jeff Zucker said recently.
They’re part of a general effort by broadcasters to keep viewers from changing stations. In the past, networks have compressed end credits so they fly by, or eliminated commercial breaks between shows.
Executives are also worried that personal recording devices such as Tivo will cost them a captive audience for commercials.