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NBCUniversal surrounds 2014 Olympic Winter Games with unprecedented promotion, expanded editorial coverage

by jmaloni


Mon, Feb 3rd 2014 12:00 pm

NBCUniversal will surround the XXII Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, with the most extensive multi-platform coverage and promotion in Winter Games history. The 2014 Olympic Winter Games are an "NBCUniversal Gold Symphony" initiative, which leverages the company's promotional resources to drive awareness to key events. NBCUniversal properties will participate in the multi-platform "Big Event Strategy" by focusing on unique aspects of the Olympics, including news, entertainment, celebrity and fashion.

For three weeks, every NBCUniversal platform - including television networks, websites and businesses - will promote the Olympics. Many platforms of NBCUniversal will provide cross-channel promotion and expanded editorial support on-air, online and on-site. Since the acquisition of NBCUniversal by Comcast in January 2011, NBCUniversal has 40 percent more capacity, including 19 broadcast/cable networks and more than 60 websites, to promote the upcoming Winter Games than it had for Vancouver in 2010.

Below are highlights of the NBCU properties that are supporting the Sochi Olympics:

NBC Programs

'Today Show': "Today's" anchors Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, Al Roker, Natalie Morales, Willie Geist andJenna Bush Hager will report live from Sochi, and will interview Olympians and NBC Olympics' commentators throughout the month. The Sochi Games marks the ninth Olympics "Today" has traveled to and covered. Meredith Vieira will contribute frequently to "Today" in Sochi, and Olympic alpine skiing gold medalist Lindsey Vonn will serve as an Olympic correspondent for "Today" and NBC Sports. Olympic figure skating gold medalists Evan Lysacek andKristi Yamaguchi will also be correspondents for "Today."

"Today" coverage from Olympic Park and the mountain venues began this morning. Lauer and Vieira will host the Opening Ceremony on Friday, Feb. 7, at 7:30 p.m. ET.

'NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams':Award-winning journalist Brian Williams will anchor "Nightly News" from Sochi throughout the games, and will be joined by correspondents Richard Engel, Chris Jansing, Kier Simmons, Anne Thompson and Kevin Tibbles. Lester Holt, Stephanie Gosk and Dr. Nancy Snyderman will also be in Sochi with NBC Olympics.

'Access Hollywood': "Access Hollywood" anchor Billy Bush will interview the stars of the Winter Games, explore Sochi's picturesque scenery, and showcase the city that is called the "Russian Riviera." "Access Hollywood" will find Sochi's hotspots and spotlight them.

AccessHollywood.com will feature extended footage of on-air pieces, profiles highlighting Olympic athletes and breaking news.

'Late Night with Jimmy Fallon: Jimmy Fallon': "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" will debut special Olympic-themed comedy throughout the games. "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" will debut Monday, Feb. 17, at midnight on NBC.

'Saturday Night Live': "Saturday Night Live" has created comedic sketches covering different aspects of the Olympics.

Olympic Networks

NBC: NBCUniversal will present more than 1,539 hours of coverage of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games across NBC, NBCSN, CNBC, MSNBC, USA Network and NBCOlympics.com. For more information, click here. NBC's coverage of the 2014 Sochi Games begins in primetime Thursday, Feb. 6, at 8 p.m., one night before the network's traditional coverage of the Opening Ceremony Friday, Feb. 7, and continues until the Closing Ceremony on Sunday, Feb. 23.

NBCSN: NBCSN, NBC Sports Group's Emmy Award-winning 24/7 sports network, will present more than 230 hours of coverage, including live figure skating for the first time, and serve as the home for Team USA. NBCSN will air at least one gold medal final live each day through its 16 days of coverage. Most days, live coverage on NBCSN will begin at 3 a.m. ET and continue for 12 hours.

CNBC: In addition to its curling coverage during the games, NBCUniversal's fully distributed cable business channel will promote the Olympics in stores with Sochi Olympics employee uniforms and specialty bookmarks at checkout counters.

MSNBC: MSNBC will cover the news surrounding the games and telecast live hockey coverage on 11 of its 12 days, including medal round games. In addition, NBCUniversal's 24/7 cable news channel that is fully distributed in roughly 100 million homes, will promote the Games on-air. Geist, co-host of "Today" and "Morning Joe," will serve as a sportsdesk reporter for NBC Olympics.

USA Network: USA Network will present four custom "Psych"-Olympics spot featuring stars James Roday and Dulé Hill and official Ralph Lauren Team USA items. Plus, the No. 1 network in all of basic cable for an unprecedented seven straight years (seen in more than 102 million U.S. homes), will air medal round coverage of hockey and curling and three men's hockey games featuring Team Canada.

Reporting from Sochi

E!: E! News' Terrence Jenkins, Jason Kennedy and Ali Fedotowsky will report from Sochi. In addition, E! News segments will provide the unique pop culture perspective of the games and the city, covering the food, fashion and celebrities in attendance. Eonline will offer all the inside scoop, features on the athletes and all the late-breaking pop culture and entertainment news coming out of Sochi. E! will also present a tailored promotion starring "Chelsea Lately" host Chelsea Handler.

The Weather Channel: "Wake Up with Al" hosts Al Roker and Stephanie Abrams will report from Sochi, providing regular forecasts of the games and discussing weather conditions and their impact on each competition. Olympic skier Kaylin Richardson will also file reports, providing her insider athlete perspective on the impacts of training, trial runs and competing in extreme weather conditions. 

Promotion and Editorial Content

Golf Channel: "Morning Drive" will feature Olympic-themed guests and present special footage of golfers playing Winter Olympic sports - including PGA golfer Billy Horschel snowboarding. In addition, on Feb. 24 at 10 p.m., "In Play with Jimmy Roberts" will feature Olympic golf course architect and designer Gil Hanse with an update on the course design for the 2016 Olympic games in Rio, Brazil.

GolfChannel.com and Golf Channel's social media will provide vignettes of golf's Olympic debut in 2016.

Oxygen: During the Feb. 5 episode of "Best Ink," Oxygen will present a custom, one-minute "Olympic ink" co-promo, which will feature an inside look at Olympian tattoos. Additionally, a custom 30-second promo and 10-second bumpers were created.

Bravo: "Watch What Happens Live" host Andy Cohen presented a special show featuring NBC Olympics' figure skating analyst and Olympic gold medalist Tara Lipinski guest-bartending on Jan. 27.

Sprout: Sprout will promote on-air and create a custom-made "The Chica Show" and Olympics micro-website teaching children about sportsmanship and the games.

Syfy: Syfy will present custom co-branded promotional pieces, and Syfy.com will provide custom editorial as well as an Olympics widget online.

NBC Sports Regional Networks: NBC Sports Regional Networks will provide in-depth coverage throughout the Olympics, covering the performance of local athletes, news affecting the region's NHL teams and more. Each network will also promote the games on-air during local news telecasts as well as online with banners on their respective digital properties.

Affiliates: Most NBC's affiliates will present "The Olympic Zone," a 30-minute nightly show that will provide insights and news. The sportsdesk reporters, all based in Sochi, include: Olympic silver medalist Tanith Belbin; special correspondent for NBC News Ben Fogle; Geist; Gosk; Olympic all-around gymnastics champion Nastia Liukin; reporter Brian Shactman; Snyderman; and action sports commentator Sal Masekela.

Promotions leading up to and through the Olympics will air on all 238 NBC affiliate and owned television stations nationwide.

NBC Sports Radio: NBC Sports Radio will provide interviews with athletes and NBC Olympics announcers and experts throughout the games.

NBCOLYMPICS.COM: NBCOlympics.com will serve as the pre-eminent digital destination for Olympic content and the exclusive home of Olympic video coverage, featuring, for the first time, live streaming of all Winter Games competition, plus event rewinds and extensive video highlights.

In addition to delivering more than 1,000 hours of live streaming coverage, NBCOlympics.com will deliver unprecedented digital-only original programming, the vast majority for verified cable, satellite and telco customers. The video offering will include whip-around competition coverage from "Gold Zone"; a daily figure skating news and highlights show, "Olympic Ice"; and regular news updates throughout each day of competition via NBCOlympics.com's "Olympic News Desk" updates.For more information, click here.

Fandango: Fandango will provide Olympic editorial content, including the best winter sports movies and the best sports movie moments. In addition, Fandango will feature the Olympics in the "Friday FanMail" newsletter. Fandango will also provide comedic Olympic winter sports-themed gifs for Tumblr and related graphics for Facebook and Instagram.

DailyCandy: DailyCandy.com will feature NBC Olympics sportsdesk reporter and five-time Olympic medalist Liukin guest-editing in late January.

Universal Theme Parks: Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando Resort will promote NBC Sports Groups' coverage of the Sochi Olympics with in-park promotions and by featuring an NBC Olympics-produced video on outdoor screens at each of their CityWalk locations. There will also be signage and online support. Team members at Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando Resort will also don Olympic attire.

The Olympics begin Feb. 6. The primetime broadcast is scheduled to include competition in snowboard slopestyle (men's and women's), in which two-time gold medalist Shaun White will compete in slopestyle's Olympic debut; team figure skating, which is also in the Olympics for the first time; and women's freestyle moguls.

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