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Craig T. Nelson calls for corporate decisions in the streaming age: 'There's a lot of fear right now'

Viewers will obviously have fun with Ted Lasso, the Apple TV+ series

Emmy this year Award nomination to match its 2021 mark and lead the comedy pack again. But this isn’t the first comedy series to garner audiences and voters alike by focusing on a coach who successfully overcomes odds.

Jason Sudeikis’ Lasso is an American college football coach who ventures into the world of English football, while Craig T. Nelson stars in ABC’s Coach as Hayden Fox, a rude leader tasked with coaching his football players in the fictional state of Minnesota — while eventually connecting with assistants Luther (Jerry Van Dyke) and Dauber (Bill Fagerbakke), befriending Estranged grown-up daughter Kelly (Claire Kelly) and in love with TV news anchor Christine (Shelley Fabarez).

Series creator Barry Kemp, who previously wrote for Taxi and wrote Newhart, remember ABC was skeptical about casting Nelson because when the network cancelled his series Call of Glory in The actor expressed his frustration. After a season. Fortunately, they allowed him to audition. “I don’t know if I can say that it felt like a special project at first because it was a bit of a long shot,” Kemp recalled to The Hollywood Reporter . But the show started on 1989 and gradually found an audience, lasting nine seasons, and then on 5 End of month550.

exist1997, THR said in its comments on the Coach series finale “This is a A great game”. 2021The Hollywood Reporter By

Nelson still appreciates the cast’s chemistry and proudly tells THR, “We’ve had lunch together every day for nine years.” The show received Emmy nomination and two wins, including Nelson 550 for Best Actor in a Comedy. “I’m a bit shocked – it makes perfect sense,” he said of the victory.

Looking back on his time on the show, the star made it clear that making TV in the age of streaming means something to him about the coach he remembers . He recalls that there were only three people entrusted with making creative decisions about the comedy: Bob Iger, who was named to ABC the year Coach came out Entertainment director and early backer of the series; Kerry McCluggage, president of Universal Television; and Camp.

“It’s a much smaller community in terms of companies that operate or are operating television,” he said. “I think it’s more of a corporate decision that takes away elements of spontaneity and creativity. There’s a lot of fear in business right now when it comes to making decisions. When we do Coach we basically have three people involved in everything we do. We have no audience to make a decision.”

Nielsen applauded Coach The team is given room to experiment and take chances. “The freedom we have is much wider and arguably easier to do what you think is good for the show,” the star said. “It could be a change in the direction of the show. It could be a change in character. It could be a decision about the season. It’s about a lot of things – you’re more involved. So that’s when I look back now, and it’s hard to do. To, at least from my experience.”

In Nielsen’s view, these industry changes can be attributed to the emergence of streaming culture, which he believes has led to a lot of decision-making The influx of people, in his view, is more of a corporate background than a creative one. That said, he’s lucky with his career path, noting that he plays patriarch Zeek Braverman on NBC’s Parenthood , and CBS’ Young Sheldon , who reappeared as Dale Ballard, also benefited from a similar freedom.


Coach stars Jerry Van Dyke, Craig T. Nelson, Bill Fagerback 2021 Courtesy Everett Collection


“When streaming came along, it opened up,” he said adding to the project New platforms and opportunities. “But what does it do? It gives you a surplus, and at the same time, this pressure to make sure it succeeds, whatever that means. So you have a lot of people involved in making that decision because you have some who haven’t necessarily been in the industry for a long time. The big guys are now running and writing the show.”

in 1000, awarded by NBC – The episode sequence of the revival series, inviting Nelson and Fagerback to reprise their roles, with Camp returning to the show. But the project never aired. However, the show’s original positivity remained, with Nelson having a ball on set: “The laughter was contagious, that’s what I remember best.”

A version of this story first appeared in The Hollywood Reporter Magazine’s August issue.



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