Rita Moreno to Receive NATPE’s Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award

Rita Moreno is a legacy…

The National Association of Television Program Executives (NATPE) will honor the 86-year-old Puerto Rican actress, dancer and singer with its Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Awards in 2019.

Rita Moreno

The 16th annual Tartikoffs, as their called,will be doled out at NATPE’s conference in Miami in January. They are named for the late NBC Entertainment chief who assembled the network’s top-rated programming lineups in the 1980s.

Moreno, whose career has spanned more than 70 years, is an “EGOT” winner (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony), as well as a Kennedy Center honoree who currently stars in Netflix’s One Day at a Time.

She’s also one of 23 people who have achieved what is called the Triple Crown of Acting, with individual competitive OscarEmmy and Tony awards for acting. She has won numerous other awards, including various lifetime achievement awards and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor.

In addition to Moreno, other honorees include Betty WhiteHenry Winkler, Byron AllenBob Greenblatt and Mara Brock Akil.

Conference organizers said the award recipients are recognized “for exhibiting their extraordinary passion, leadership, independence and vision through their diverse work in being a part of the creation and distribution of content for the world’s traditional and digital marketplaces.”

Suarez Inks Production Deal with Universal Television

Flody Suarez is going Universal

The Latino producer and former NBC executive and his producing partner Jeffrey Seller have signed a production deal with Universal Television.

Flody Suarez

“Jeffrey’s spectacular track record on Broadway and his knack for finding and nurturing brilliant new talent, such as the creative forces behind Rent, Avenue Q, In the Heights and Hamilton, is nothing short of remarkable,” NBC Entertainment and Universal Television chairman Bob Greenblatt said. “There is more and more cross-pollination these days from theater to television, especially at NBC, and we’re excited to see where he and Flody’s instincts and talent relationships will go in the world of television.”

Under Greenblatt, who has strong theater ties and has been involved in a number of Broadway productions, including Hamilton in which he is an investor, theater has had significant presence on NBC. That includes the series Smash as well as live stagings of The Sound of Music, Peter PanThe Wiz Live and the upcoming Hairspray and A Few Good Men.

This marks Suarez’s return to NBC where he was a vice president of development, working on such shows as ER and Just Shoot Me. He is currently a consultant on Full Frontal with Samantha Bee and recently consulted for Sony on NBC’s drama The Blacklist.

He has produced several television series, including 8 Simple Rules, The Tick and The Book of Daniel.

Shakira Replacing Aguilera on “The Voice” Next Season

Shakira will be springing into action on the next cycle of The Voice

The 35-year-old Colombian superstar will be replacing Christina Aguilera on the upcoming spring cycle of NBC’s hit reality singing competition.


Aguilera has decided to take some time off of the The Voice because she’s releasing her new album in November, and she’ll follow that up with a tour. Aguilera is expected to return next fall.

“We know we needed to find another of the world’s greatest female vocal talents, and Shakira instantly came to mind”, Voice executive producer Mark Burnett said about the search to find a replacement for Aguilera.

But Aguilera won’t be the only coach sitting out the next cycle…

Cee Lo Green is taking time off as he works on two albums and develops a comedy series for NBC based on his life. Usher has been tapped to fill in for Green next season.

“Usher is not just a singer or an entertainer, he is a global icon,” said Burnett.

Fellow The Voice coaches Adam Levine and Blake Shelton are staying put for Season 4.

When the network expanded The Voice to two cycles per year, NBC officials said that not all Voice coaches would be able to do both cycles of the show because of the demands of their music careers.

NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt said the network was “happy to accommodate” Green and Aguilera’s commitments.

“The participants on our show benefit from our coaches’ expertise and their continued success in the music business allows for significant new contributions to the contestants when they return,” he said.