10:23am PT by Kate Stanhope
NBC Teams With Paley Center for 90th Anniversary Primetime Special
NBC is throwing itself a birthday party.
The network is set to air a two-hour primetime special next month to mark it's 90th anniversary, it was announced Thursday.
Kelsey Grammer will host The Paley Center Salutes NBC's 90th Anniversary, which will look back on NBC's decades of programming including comedies (Cheers, Frasier) and dramas (ER, Hill Street Blues). The special will air Sunday, Feb. 19, at 9 p.m.
The broadcast will feature new interviews with NBC stars of past and present including Ted Danson, Tina Fey, Debra Messing, Noah Wyle, Rob Lowe, Blake Shelton, William Shatner, Jennifer Lopez, Bob Costas, Al Michaels and prolific producer Dick Wolf.
In addition to those listed above, The West Wing and L.A. Law, comedies The Monkees, Get Smart, The Cosby Show, The Golden Girls, Seinfeld, Will & Grace, Friends, The Office and 30 Rock will also be showcased. Brad Lachman Productions will produce in association with The Paley Center for Media. Maureen J. Reidy, Brad Lachman and Diane Lewis will executive produce. Bill Bracken will co-executive produce.
“We’re so pleased to have the Paley Center paying tribute to NBC on its 90th birthday,” NBC Entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt said. “Founded in 1926 by RCA, NBC is one of this country’s most significant cultural legacies. The list of iconic stars and programs over the years is mind-boggling, and our thanks to Kelsey Grammer — one of the best — for coming back home to host this special. It’s remarkable for any company to survive for nearly a century, and we’re especially proud that NBC is still going strong as the leading network even to this day.”
Added Paley Center president and CEO Reidy: “The Paley Center is so proud to bring to life this special celebration of NBC’s 90 incredible years. As the nation’s leading voice in the discussion about the cultural, creative, and social significance of television, the Paley Center is uniquely positioned to bring this memorable television experience to TV audiences around the world. This special will show why for 90 years NBC has enthralled generations with its groundbreaking and iconic programing.”
The special is similar to NBC's two-hour tribute to longtime TV director James Burrows. That special, which aired in February last year, was highlighted by several high-profile cast reunions from shows Burrows had worked on over his five-decade career, including Friends, Will & Grace, Cheers and Taxi, among others.
Although many of the shows included in the tribute list are no surprise, NBC's decision to highlight The Cosby Show comes as the star and creator of the '80s sitcom continues to fight allegations of sexual assault in court. The network scrapped a show it was developing with Cosby in 2014 as allegations about his past behavior began to mount.