NBCUniversal Tops Off 2014 Upfront Season with Star-Studded Celebration
This year, for the first time ever, the networks of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment - Bravo, E!, Esquire Network, Oxygen, Sprout, Syfy and USA - joined together at the Javits Center North Hall today for one spectacular Upfront celebration. Bonnie Hammer, Chairman, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, kicked off the presentation, along with NBCUniversal President Advertising Sales Linda Yaccarino. The event was attended by an audience of 3,000 and featured more than 120 stars of current hits and newest offerings across the portfolio.
The All Together. Entertaining presentation touted the strength of the #NBCUCable portfolio and showcased content from each network to bring the overall theme - All Together. Different. - to vivid life. E!'s "LIVE FROM THE RED CARPET," hosted by Giuliana Rancic and Ross Mathews, streamed the event at E! Online (http://www.eonline.com). The evening culminated with an after-party featuring a special 30-minute live performance by British superstar and singer/songwriter, Jessie J.
"Our portfolio is made up of strategically targeted brands completely unique in their individual appeal," said Hammer. "We've never done an upfront event on this scale, but we felt it was the best way - in fact, the only way -- to convey The Collective strength of the most engaging, focused and creative brands in the business."
"Aggregation and scale are critical in today's media landscape that continues to be fragmented," added Yaccarino. "Our unique portfolio of cable networks delivers unparalleled scale and targeting that reaches some of the youngest, most influential and socially connected audiences."
Kim Kardashian kicked off E!'s presentation by introducing Joan Rivers and Giuliana Rancic, who launched into the pop culture powerhouse's series highlights. With a continued focus on high-demand celebrity and entertainment news coverage from red carpet to fashion, E! is expanding its already dynamic line-up with high impact, culturally relevant scripted programming. "THE ROYALS," E!'s first original scripted series - presented on stage by its stars Elizabeth Hurley, William Moseley and Alexandra Park - is a one-hour drama that follows a fictional British Royal family in modern day London and pits public Perception of the royal family against the reality of life inside the Castle walls. Other new series highlights include: "THE DVF PROJECT" (WT) - presented on stage by Diane von Furstenberg - a series set in the world of the prestigious global fashion icon, which gives a group of ambitious young women extraordinary entrée to her empire for a weeks-long ultimate interview that will prepare one of them to take on the world of fashion and ascend to the prized DVF Global Brand Ambassador position.
Syfy will continue to deliver premium immersive content that sparks the imagination in more unexpected and fantastical ways. At the 2014 Upfront, the network highlighted three new series. "ASCENSION" - starring Battlestar Galactica's Tricia Helfer was on stage to present the new six hour event series premiering later this year. "HELIX" stars Kyra Zagorsky and Billy Campbell unveiled "DOMINION," an epic Supernatural drama that focuses on the ultimate celestial battle between good and evil. Amanda Schull and Aaron Stanford previewed their new drama "12 MONKEYS," a time travel adventure and high stakes race against the clock, set to debut in early 2015.
Esquire Network, which debuted last fall, continues its bold rollout of original programming with 200 original hours planned for the 2014-15 season. Building off of Esquire magazine's 80 years of unparalleled insight into what makes men tick, the network champions the pursuit of a well-played life with programming that speaks to a diverse set of interests, passions and aspirations. Among the series presented today were "CAR MATCHMAKER," featuring comedy writer ("Seinfeld") and car enthusiast SPIKE Feresten as he helps car-challenged guys choose the perfect set of wheels, and "KNIFE FIGHT," the gritty, underground cooking competition hosted by Ilan Hall, currently in its second season.
Bravo continues to add programming to its stable of signature water-cooler reality originals and now introduces scripted series to its lineup to further engage its passionate viewers. "SHAHS OF SUNSET" star Reza Farahan provided a sneak peek of new unscripted series including "GAME OF CROWNS" and the first real-time docu-series, "100 DATES." Lisa Edelstein, star of Bravo's first original scripted series, "GIRLFRIENDS GUIDE TO DIVORCE," was on hand to introduce the hour-long series about a newly single woman as she embarks on the next chapter of her life. Bravo also showcased "ODD MOM OUT," a half-hour comedy based on the life of author Jill Kargman, capturing the outrageous world of moms in New York City's Upper East Side.
Sprout - the channel for young children and their families to share together - was highlighted throughout the presentation, with appearances from the hosts of "THE SUNNY SIDE UP SHOW," the only live daily morning show for preschoolers, as well as "THE GOOD NIGHT SHOW," Sprout's evening programming block that helps guide families in their nighttime routines.
With a network rebrand coming later this year targeting modern young women, Oxygen's new original programming slate focuses on authentic and relatable characters with extraordinary stories. Among the series spotlighted were "NAIL'D IT," a new series hosted by Adrienne Bailon based on the latest craze of nail art. "PREACHERS OF L.A." and "FIX MY CHOIR" with an appearance by star and Grammy-nominated gospel artist, Deitrick Haddon.
The #1 network in all of cable focused its portion of the presentation on its new scripted original dramas - featuring a range of provocative plots, culturally resonant themes and serialized storylines. Jason Isaacs and Anne Heche, stars of the upcoming event series "DIG," were on hand to introduce their highly-anticipated action-adventure drama set to premiere this fall. "GRACELAND" stars Aaron Tveit and Daniel Sunjata introduced USA's two new summer dramas: "RUSH," a series about a renegade Doctor Who caters to LA's elite and shady clientele; as well as "SATISFACTION," a sexy series that explores modern marriage at its midpoint. Tveit and Sunjata also introduced "COMPLICATIONS," a gripping drama series slated for 2015 about an ER doctor whose unlikely act of heroism sets in motion a chain of unforeseen consequences.
About NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment
NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment is made up of leading cable brands which include USA, Bravo, Syfy, E!, Oxygen, Esquire Network, Sprout, Chiller and Cloo- as well as production entities Universal Cable Productions (UCP) and Wilshire Studios. The portfolio engages a worldwide audience across multiple platforms through powerful award-winning scripted dramas, innovative reality, lifestyle and late night programming, popular acquired series, a rapidly expanding entertainment news division and inventive children's television.