3:43pm PT by Debbie Emery
NBC Super Bowl Commercials Could Cost Record-Breaking $4.5 Million
Commercials during the 2015 Super Bowl could be the most expensive ever.
NBC is currently seeking $4.5 million for a 30-second spot during Super Bowl XLIX, which will be held at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, on February 1, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed.
The new sum is a dramatic increase from an average of $4 million per spot during Fox's broadcast of the 2014 Super Bowl in New Jersey, when last minute ads were shopped for around $4.4. million.
Ratings for the big game are consistently rising, with Super Bowl XLVIII drawing in a record-breaking 112.2 million viewers -- up 4 million from the previous year -- despite the blow out win by the Seattle Seahawks over the Denver Broncos.
Sports across all genres were a hot topic throughout the upfronts, from the success of the Winter Olympics in Sochi to No. 1 Sunday Night Football and CBS' upcoming Thursday Night Football package.
NBC Sports group chairman Mark Lazarus stressed the network's flex schedule, which allows it to select the best matchups for its SNF franchise, an important distinction as CBS rolls out eight games on Thursday night, which historically have not offered the kind of marquee weekly contests of the Sunday match-ups.
Lazarus also talked up the network's addition of a divisional playoff game and the Thanksgiving Day matchup -- a replay of the Super Bowl with champs Seattle Seahawks facing the San Francisco 49ers.
The 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, are still over two years away, but NBC execs are already gearing up for the games coming off the success of Sochi and the $7.75 billion six-game Olympics deal that secures NBC with the rights until 2032. The recent Winter Olympics contributed $846 million to the broadcast unit's top line, which exceeded first-quarter expectations with revenue up 72 percent, to $2.6 billion.