NBCUniversal gives vote of confidence to singer
Fans of The Kelly Clarkson Show got an early Christmas present last week as NBCUniversal announced a two-season renewal for the hit Emmy-Award winning daytime talk show, taking it through 2023.
“One ray of sunshine in this wildly unpredictable year is that we get to continue to deliver to stations and fans a show that brings people together,” said Traci Wilson, NBCUniversal Syndication Studios executive vice president in a statement. “This wouldn’t be possible without the heart and humor of the talented and dedicated Kelly Clarkson and our production team, led by the incomparable [executive producer] Alex Duda, both of whom are masters of storytelling. It’s easy to see why Emmy voters, critics and viewers have become such loyal fans of the show.”
Kelly Clarkson has been renewed in 75 percent of the country with all of the NBC-owned stations on board, including NBC 5 (WMAQ) in Chicago.
Clarkson becomes the second sophomore talk show to get the green light for additional seasons in recent months; a few months ago, Disney Media Distribution’s Tamron Hall was renewed for a third season, with seven of the eight ABC-owned stations on board (excluding of course, ABC 7 who passed the show onto CW 26.)
The renewal also means Clarkson is likely the heir apparent to Ellen DeGeneres’ 3 p.m. time slots, where she currently resides on most NBC-owned stations leading in to their local newscasts as her contract expires in 2022. Ratings for Ellen have declined significantly over the last two years as a toxic work culture and several personal missteps have led to a public relations nightmare for the Warner Bros.-syndicated show. The latest hit came last week when a Buzzfeed report showed her program losing advertising support and failing to book A-list celebrity guests. In another blow, DeGeneres revealed she had contracted Covid-19, forcing the series to shut production until January.
According to Nielsen ratings released on December 15, Clarkson earned a season high-tying 1.0 household rating up from the previous week while Ellen earned a 1.2, down 8 percent during the same time frame. In the key 25-54 female demo, Clarkson had a 0.5, up 25 percent from the previous week. The latest ratings released this week showed both shows tied in households at 1.1.
Keep in mind many factors are affecting ratings this season, including the ongoing pandemic and the recent election, not to mention news pre-emptions.
In Chicago, Clarkson airs at 2 p.m. opposite newcomer Drew Barrymore on CBS 2 (WBBM), while Ellen airs at 3 p.m.
The news comes as NBCUniversal announced yet another name change to it’s syndication operations, transiting to NBC Universal Syndication Studios from NBCUniversal Television Distribution, a name dating back to 2004 when NBC and Universal merged (as did their respective syndication operations, NBC Enterprises and Universal Television Distribution, respectively.) Since 2010, NBCUniversal has been owned by Comcast. Previous names for the syndicator (for one or the another) include MCA TV, NBC Films, and Studios USA.
As of today, all stories tagged to NBCUniversal Television Distribution will now re-tagged NBCUniversal Syndication Studios to reflect the name change. Recently, Disney/ABC Domestic Television was re-christened Disney Media Group as it was once known as Buena Vista Television and before that, Walt Disney Television Distribution.
In other NBCU syndication news, both Maury Povich’s and Steve Wilkos’ talk shows – on hold since the pandemic, have found a new creative way to stay in production – but it is too complicated to be explained here. For more information on how they plan to pull off producing a show in the pandemic era, click here.