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TV Bulletin Board (Wed., June 5) -- Olbermann back in business, NP Harris gets a twofer

KOCard NeilPatrickHarris

He already has more than there strikes against him. But TBS is the latest network to take a gamble with Keith Olbermann, naming him Wednesday (June 5) as host of its Major League Baseball postseason studio show.

Olbermann will be paired with Hall of Fame pitcher Dennis Eckersley.

“It’s well known that Keith is a fan of the game,” TBS exec David Levy says in a publicity release. “And when you combine that with his studio experience, keen insight and passion for baseball and its history, he’ll add a new dimension.”

The release mentions Olbermann’s previous sports work at ESPN, Fox and NBC, but omits his stormy associations with MSNBC and Current TV. On March 13 of this year, Olbermann and Current jointly announced that they had reached a settlement in their lawsuits against each other. “Nothing more will be disclosed,” they said.

***It’s again CBS’ turn to air the Emmys. And as in 2009, the network has turned to Neil Patrick Harris to host the ceremony.

The How I Met Your Mother star is “the quintessential host -- engaging, entertaining and a true showman -- with a passion for celebrating the medium we all love,” CBS entertainment president Nina Tassler said in a release. The Emmys will be telecast on Sunday, Sept. 22nd.

Harris again is warming up by hosting the Tony Awards, which CBS will present on Sunday, June 9th. It will be the fourth time he’s hosted Broadway’s biggest night, and his third such stint in a row.

***Filmmaker Ken Burns’ latest topic will be cancer. PBS announced Tuesday that he’s collaborating with Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee on a documentary drawn from his 2010 book The Emperor of All Maladies: a Biography of Cancer. It’s scheduled to air in spring 2015. Burns also has films in development on Vietnam, Jackie Robinson, the Roosevelts, country music and Ernest Hemingway.

***Although its ratings have sunk to an average of just 4.9 million viewers per episode, NBC has renewed the serial killer drama Hannibal for a second season. The network cites its relatively young median age -- 45.7 -- and its popularity in “upscale” households with incomes of more than $100,000 annually. Hannibal’s 13-episode Season 2 “will air no earlier than midseason” next year, NBC says.

***FX has signed Tracy Morgan to star in a comedy pilot called Death Pact. The former 30 Rock co-star will play what the network describes as a “formerly lazy, pot-dealing assistant high school coach who returns to his hometown as a decorated war hero.”

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