CBS Exec: “Leno Experiment Obviously Did Not Work”

by | January 9, 2010 at 2:16 PM | Show & Tell, TV News

CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler (CBS)

CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler (CBS)

Let the Leno lashings begin!

CBS kicked off the first day of network presentations at the Television Critics Association winter press tour Saturday in Pasadena, but as expected, the discussion quickly turned to NBC.

The crisis occurring at the Peacock network is the talk of the town, and CBS entertainment president Nina Tassler was asked for her thoughts on the situation.

“What I have the most trouble with,” says Tassler, “is their decision to do what they did, and then to say this is a reflection on the whole network business is misguided. Our business is thriving. We have hit shows, as do ABC and Fox.”

“For us, it allowed us to get a bigger piece of the ad revenue pie at 10 p.m.,” Tassler admits, noting that CBS benefited from having Jay Leno on at that hour. “But unfortunately, our creative community was somewhat bruised by this. A lot of people were put out of work and saw this as a negative impact on our business.”

Of CBS’s continued successful strategy, Tassler says, “Ultimately there is no substitute for developing great shows, working with great talent, and getting your shows on the air.”

“Leno was an experiment that obviously did not work.”