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NBC Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt — whose roots are in Broadway — announced Friday that the network just closed a deal to develop a series of TV movies based on Parton’s songs, stories and life. Parton will produce. Greenblatt also noted that Parton could have an on-screen role and the movies will likely stand on their own and not be a series of films.
“We’re going to try and create uplifting movies the entire family can enjoy together,”Greenblatt told reporters at the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour, noting that he sees that as a “pretty untapped” genre on television right now.
The exec noted that the movies would be infused with Parton’s genuine hopefulness and outlooks. The movies reunite Greenblatt with Parton, who previously teamed to exec produce the Broadway adaptation of 9 to 5: The Musical.
Singer-songwriter-actress Parton started her career at age 13 on the radio before being a featured singer on a syndicated TV program. She crossed over with 1977’s “Here You Come Again,” a hit on both the country and pop music charts. Her notable songs include “9 to 5,” from the movie of the same name, and duet with Kenny Rogers “Islands in the Stream.”
NBC’s deal is with Parton and production partner Sam Haskell of Magnolia Hill Entertainment of Warner Bros. Television. NBC will develop aslate of two-hour TV movies.
“I am so excited to be involved with my friend Bob Greenblatt, who produced the Broadway version of 9 to 5: The Musical with me, and my longtime friend and former agent Sam Haskell,” Parton said in a statement. “We want to create projects for NBC that are both fun and inspirational with a family audience in mind.”
During her career, Parton has had 41 albums that have reached the top 10 on the country charts as well as 25 certified gold, platinum or multiplatnium. She’s a two-time Oscar nominee for her original music, including “9 to 5” and “Travelin’ Thru,” from Transamerica.
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