NBC sends Donald Trump a warning

The network's entertainment unit says it'll take action if the celebrity businessman 'does things that cross a line.'

By Aimee Picchi Jan 7, 2013 11:59AM

Credit: Donna Ward/Getty Images
Caption: Donald Trump leaves 'The Late Show with David Letterman' at Ed Sullivan Theater on October 25, 2012As the host of NBC's "The Celebrity Apprentice," real estate developer Donald Trump walks a fine line between generating buzz -- and viewers -- and creating animosity. 


Now, Trump might want to make sure he keeps on the "buzz" side of the equation, with Comcast's (CMCSA) NBC Entertainment Chairman Bob Greenblatt saying the network will take action if he "becomes somehow hurtful and says or does things that cross a line," according to a report in Deadline.com


Some might say Trump has already stepped over the line: a petition started last year aimed at urging Macy's (M) to sever ties with Trump has gained almost 680,000 signatures.


According to the petition, Trump has "engaged in sexist behavior" and "perpetuated the racially charged birther conspiracy," among its complaints. The same campaign, from the liberal group MoveOn.org, last month hired a mobile billboard reading "Dump Trump" to circle Macy's corporate headquarters. 


Macy's has sidestepped the issue, with chief executive Terry Lundgren noting that the perfume, clothing and other merchandise it sells bearing Trump's name "are not representative of any political position," according to the New York Daily News


So far, it seems Trump is on NBC's good side. The network renewed his show, with "Celebrity Apprentice" returning on March 3 for an all-star edition. (The star power in the newest edition of Trump's long-running show is debatable, relying on competitors from the program's fast five seasons. They include actors Stephen Baldwin and Gary Busey and musicians Dee Snider and Bret Michaels.)


Cracks might be showing in Trump's ratings pull, however. In May, "Celebrity Apprentice" drew the program's lowest-rated finale episode, with only 6.8 million viewers tuning in. That's a far cry from the 12.1 million viewers who watched the show's finale in 2008, when Piers Morgan won the competition.


Despite the flagging ratings, "Celebrity Apprentice" is still a workhorse for NBC -- and Greenblatt adds that the network doesn't think Trump has crossed that line yet. 


"He has his political belief system but I really don’t think what he’s doing in his personal life is going to corrupt what he’s doing on the show," Greenblatt said. He spoke at the Television Critics Association tour, held this week in California.


He added, referring to Trump's toying with the idea of running for president in the last election, "We talked him out of running for president, wasn't that good enough?"


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270Comments
Jan 7, 2013 3:57PM
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ALL of those reality (it's not really reality it's more like hyped up bullcrap drama) show's need to go starting with dead squirrel head donald.
Jan 7, 2013 3:56PM
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Hey, NBC dropped Harry's law because the audience was not in the 18-49 age range. they suck as far as I am concerned. Look at what they did to Ann Curry and of course left old matt lauer...... 
haha... go ahead,,,, dump trump...
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I think Trump has had it with being a wolf in wolfs clothing and still having people have to ask him if he's a wolf!
Jan 7, 2013 3:51PM
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Davey Crockett is calling.  He want's his hat back.
Jan 7, 2013 3:49PM
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"perpetuated the racially charged birther conspiracy,"

No, thats not it, mabe if the Kenyan would provide an actual copy of his birth certificate the cries to see it would stop. A computer print out isn't an actual birth certificate. **** YOU NBC!

Jan 7, 2013 3:45PM
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you think abc, nbc,cbs, fox,msnbc,cnn,and hln are newcasts?  they are intertainment [kardashian's? and propaganda   and trump?  a long standing joke!!!!!! right to the bank after how many bankruptoperations.  and he makes news???? people believe in the jack ****   i don't think so  i think he should marry all " the kardashian'   they are just alike!!!!!!!!
Jan 7, 2013 3:44PM
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Dump Trump but dump NBC too. They both belong in the same cesspool.


Jan 7, 2013 3:43PM
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Come on, America., give in and make The Donald The President.  He's what we need!
Jan 7, 2013 3:36PM
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Donald Trump should be an embarassment for NBC.  He is a mental case, who is spiraling downward.  I hope his family can intervene before he hits rock bottom.  Someone should get him into deep therapy.  NBC should distance themselves from him before he is totally out of control, and get him the help he needs.  It just shows that money can't buy health (mental health for sure).
Jan 7, 2013 3:36PM
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Now the main stream idiots are getting in on destroying capitalism.  If NBC shut down it wouldn't hurt my feelings in the least. What a worthless broasdcast company!
Jan 7, 2013 3:30PM
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He wanted to run for president and said he could win. He can't even win his own time slot. Dude is a joke. Just like Clint Eastwood and John Macain. Three people whose time has come and gone. Just go away.
Jan 7, 2013 3:29PM
Jan 7, 2013 3:29PM
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When ANY LARGE UNIT/ENITY can dictate what a single person does (unless they are breaking a legal law!) WE ARE DOOMED!

My opinions = actions - desires - like and dislikes are MY PERSONAL BUSINESS  NOT THE  BUSINESS OF NBC - CBS - OBAMA - SANTA CLAUSE OR THE FAIRY PRINCESS!   Trump or no Trump is a personal choice - NOT AN AMERICAN BOYCOT!!!!!   SHAME ON ALL THOSE WHO WANT TO  ROB US OF OUR PERSONAL FREEDOMS!

Jan 7, 2013 3:27PM
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They need to cancel his show,hes nothing but a blowhard but guess that comes with money.They keep this crap on tv but cancel the good shows that i like.
Jan 7, 2013 3:22PM
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Money talks and liberal bull crap well you know!
Jan 7, 2013 3:22PM
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Viewers are still tuning into NBC?  The National Broadcasting Crap!?!  Ya don't say!!!  Anybody who watches Donald Trump gets exactly what they deserve:  A blowhard!!!  Gather up your guts, NBC, and tell The Donald what you told Ann Curry:  You're Fired!!! 
Jan 7, 2013 3:19PM
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I will not be watching Trump's awful show, but that is nothing new.
Jan 7, 2013 3:18PM
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NBC is a political organization. It is in business to get progressive politicians elected. I assume this one will be deleted too.
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