Smash

NBC moves ‘Smash’ to Saturday; dating show to Tuesday to bolster sagging ratings.

Smash

NBC programming chief Robert Greenblatt had to put his puppy down Wednesday.
The network announced its let’s-make-a-musical drama “Smash” is, as of April 6, moving to Saturdays to run out the rest of this season’s order. “Smash,” starring Katherine McPhee as the Broadway newcomer cast to play Marilyn Monroe in a musical biopic, was a passion project of Greenblatt’s, who first developed it while running things at pay cable network Showtime. He brought it with him when he moved to NBC.

The show started strong when it was launched last season, but faltered as its first season continued. And, despite a show-runner change, and a cast overhaul, the second season failed to rebound, ratings-wise, contributing to a lousy first quarter for the network that finished the fourth in first place among 18-to-49-year-old viewers who are the currency of broadcast TV ad sales. For the season to date, NBC has now slipped to third place in that age bracket, behind CBS and Fox.

Which explains why NBC is putting the pedal to the metal with a heavy dose of reality TV to get it through the end of the TV season in May, according to Wednesday’s announced schedule changes Most noticeably, its new dating competition series “Ready for Love,” which had been scheduled to air Sunday at 8, will instead air Tuesdays at 9, following NBC’s singing competition hit “The Voice,” starting April 9. Eva Longoria exec produces “Love.”

(One week earlier, the season finale of Ryan Murphy’s freshman comedy “The New Normal” airs its season finale after “The Voice.”)

On Sundays, NBC will instead air reruns of its Tuesday and Wednesday episodes of “The Voice,” on March 31 and April 7, leading into “Celebrity Apprentice,” which will expand to two hours as of April 14.

Matthew Perry’s freshman comedy “Go On,” meanwhile, will get to follow “The Office” on Thursday nights for its final two episodes of the season, on April 4 and 11.

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Speaking

7. Speaking of royalty, Ora fancies the title of Princess Rita and has previously spoken of her wish to join the royal family. When asked what rumour she’d like to spread about herself, she told Sugarscape: I’d probably say that I’m getting married to Prince Harry because then maybe it would actually happen. I really love Harry. Harry for king!” Get to the back of the queue, Rita!

8. Pop power couple alert! Before they both hit the big time and became huge stars, Ora dated pop crooner Bruno Mars. They met in 2009 when she was just 18 but ended things in 2011 when their respective careers took off and work got in the way. Ora has admitted she was smitten, gushing: “It was love at first sight.”

9. Ora has such an impressive array of tattoos that it’s tricky to keep track, but at the last count she had around 15. As well as the words ‘Hope’, ‘Love’ and ‘Promise’ in between her fingers, she also has a portrait of Aphrodite, an anchor, several quotes and her sister’s name (awww!).

10. Ever wondered what Rita Ora smells like? Well wonder no more, her signature scent is Chanel Chance. Phew, that’s that burning question answered! We can all go back to sleeping at night now.

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