Television

Rival Execs Wait Out Comcast-NBC Merger

As Comcast’s merger with NBC Universal moves toward completion, insiders are speculating about the fate of its “two dynamo executives,” Lauren Zalaznick, who runs Bravo and Oxygen, and Bonnie Hammer, who heads up USA Network. The two have been rivals for years, though many speculate that if the company has to choose between the two, Hammer will end up with more responsibility. "Lauren brings in edge, Bonnie brings in money," a source told The Hollywood Reporter. "If one has eight things to oversee, the other one gets eight ... Whatever list comes out, it's all about, 'Am I up above her?'” Hammer also has a slicker manner that appeals to the corporate Comcast. Still, the company hasn’t spoken a word about their plans. So Zalaznick is playing the waiting game by not renewing her contract, even though NBC has been asking her to for months. If Hammer’s contract were up, she’d likely be following suit. More executive shakeups are likely, with NBC Universal Television Entertainment Chair Jeff Gaspin’s fate unclear, and former Showtime President Robert Greenblatt likely to get more programming responsibility. On Friday, NBC Universal CEO Jeff Zucker announced that he'll be leaving the network.