NEW YORK, N.Y. – NBC pulled the plug Friday on Brian Williams’ newsmagazine “Rock Center” after a short, troubled life in which it failed to find a consistent home on the network’s prime-time schedule.
The show’s final broadcast will be on June 21, NBC Universal News Group Chairwoman Pat Fili-Krushel said in a memo to her staff.
“Rock Center” premiered on Halloween 2011 and news executives preached patience then, saying it would take awhile to get established. Bob Costas’ interview with Jerry Sandusky about the Penn State child sexual abuse case was its biggest coup, and it recently aired an hour-long special on the Boston Marathon bombings.
“While we’re disappointed with the news, we are very proud of the hard work that the ‘Rock Center’ team put into the program each week,” Fili-Krushel said in her memo. While NBC’s news division produces the show, the network’s entertainment division is responsible for putting it on the schedule.
And “Rock Center” never found a permanent home. NBC is airing it on Friday nights now, after trying it on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.
The scheduling was criticized publicly by Ted Koppel, the former ABC “Nightline” anchor who did occasional stories for “Rock Center.”
“Just when you think somebody might figure out when it’s on and want to see it the next week, they move it to another place,” Koppel told the AP in March. “That’s not helpful, and I think Brian deserves more support than that.”