[05/23/06 - 12:00 AM]
NBC and Time Warner Cable Offer Viewers Trivia and Polling Features for New Season of 'Last Comic Standing' May 30

[via press release from NBC]


First Major Broadcast Network to Launch Synchronized Interactive Application in Prime-time

NEW YORK -- May 23, 2006 -- NBC's Emmy-nominated series, "Last Comic Standing," returns this summer with a new season of laughs and a new interactive trivia and polling feature from Time Warner Cable. This is the first time a major broadcast network will launch a synchronized interactive television application for a prime-time show. Time Warner Cable viewers can tune in and interact with the laugh out loud moments as the comedy showcase searches for the funniest people in America.

Beginning Tuesday, May 30, (8-10 p.m. ET) and continuing during its regular timeslot of 9-10 p.m. ET on Tuesdays, Time Warner Cable, through its use of Navic Networks' interactive television application, will allow digital cable customers in select markets to respond with their remote control to trivia questions about the show and voice their opinions about the contestants. The trivia and polling will appear as pop up screens generated by viewer's set-top boxes that will be synchronized to occur at precise moments during the one-hour show. Navic Networks' technology will compile the polling results and display them to viewers in real time in each of their local markets. Initial Time Warner Cable markets include New York, NY, Los Angeles, CA, Cincinnati, OH, Milwaukee, WI, Wilmington, NC, Greensboro, NC and Charlotte, NC. Digital cable customers in a total of ten markets will have the opportunity to interact with "Last Comic Standing" during the series.

Time Warner Cable and Bravo are currently using interactive polling during "Top Chef," which is averaging 30 percent viewer participation in select markets. Even greater viewer participation is expected for the season finale on May 24.

"We have seen a tremendous increase in participation since we launched 'Top Chef' with Time Warner Cable," said Jean-Briac Perrette, senior vice president and chief financial officer, NBC Universal Cable. "We expect continued success with the launch of a prime-time network show like 'Last Comic Standing' as viewers become more familiar with interactive TV."

"Time Warner Cable strives to match innovative new features, like real-time iTV polling, with customer preferences for interacting while watching television," said Joan Gillman vice president of Interactive Television for Time Warner Cable. "Together with our partners at NBC Universal, we now have a strong track record of extremely popular iTV applications and we expect the play-along, interactivity developed for Last Comic Standing to be very well received."

America will choose who ultimately wins the title of "Last Comic Standing," a nationwide talent search for professional and aspiring comedians. Once the selection is narrowed down to 12, the series will follow the finalists - both male and female - as they live together and compete for the ultimate prize - an exclusive talent contract with NBC and a comedy special on Bravo. "Last Comic Standing" is produced by Peter Engel Productions, Magical Elves and NBC Universal Television Studio. The executive producers are Peter Engel ("Saved By the Bell," "City Guys"), Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz (Bravo's "Project Runway" and NBC's "Treasure Hunters") and Barry Katz ("Action," "Dane Cook's Tourgasm").

About Time Warner Cable
Time Warner Cable owns and manages cable systems serving subscribers in 27 states, which include some of the most technologically advanced, best-clustered cable systems in the country with more than 75% of the Company's customers in systems of 300,000 subscribers or more. Utilizing a fully upgraded advanced cable network and a steadfast commitment to providing consumers with choice, value and quality customer care, Time Warner Cable is an industry leader in delivering advanced products and services such as video on demand, high definition television, digital video recorders, high-speed data, wireless home networking and Digital Phone. Time Warner Cable is a subsidiary of Time Warner Inc. (NYSE: TWX).

About NBC Universal Cable
NBC Universal Cable, a division of NBC Universal, one of the world's preeminent media companies, drives the company's cable strategic development and growth including video-on-demand, pay-per-view, HDTV, TV EST (electronic sell-through), TV Wireless distribution and retransmission consent, and oversees the cable distribution, marketing and local ad sales of fourteen properties (Bravo, CNBC, CNBC World, MSNBC, mun2, NBC Weather Plus, SCI FI, ShopNBC, Sleuth, Telemundo, Telemundo Puerto Rico, Universal HD, USA and the Olympics on cable). NBC Universal Cable also directs and manages the company's cable and new media investments including A&E, The History Channel, History Channel International, The Biography Channel, National Geographic International, the Sundance Channel and Tivo.

  [may 2006]  


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