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International Games
Thursday, February 11, 2021
NBC Plans 1st Live Morning Olympic Opening Ceremony Broadcast

NBC Olympics has announced plans for its first live morning broadcast of an Olympic Opening Ceremony from Tokyo.

The broadcaster claimed the Opening Ceremony of the delayed Games will be especially meaningful this year, with Tokyo 2020 viewed as the first major global gathering since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

NBC said it wanted to provide viewer with the opportunity to watch the "historic experience" with people around the world, leading to the decision to broadcast an Olympic Opening Ceremony live in the morning for the first time.

"Following the unprecedented challenges presented by the global pandemic, the world will come together in Tokyo for what could be the most meaningful and anticipated Opening Ceremony ever," said Pete Bevacqua, chairman of NBC Sports Group.

"Given the magnitude of this event, we want to provide viewers with as many ways to connect to it as possible, live or in primetime."

Tokyo is 13 hours ahead of the East Coast of the United States.

This will mean coverage will begin at 8am Bermuda Time on NBC, with the ceremony scheduled for 8pm local time in Tokyo.

NBC has previously received criticism for airing Opening Ceremonies and competitions at the Olympic Games on tape delays, which are aimed at ensuring primetime coverage in each time zone in the country.

NBC has confirmed the Tokyo Opening Ceremony will be replayed to allow viewers to watch in primetime.

"We are delighted to offer live coverage of the Opening Ceremony for those who want immediacy, and, later in the day, build on NBC Olympics’ terrific primetime legacy with a full celebration of these much anticipated Tokyo Olympics, complete with expert analysis and enhanced coverage of Team USA," said Molly Solomon, executive producer and President of NBC Olympics Production.

Live coverage of the Opening Ceremony is due to be followed by a special edition of NBC’s Today programme, which will feature reaction and athlete interviews.

NBC’s first Olympic Daytime show will then follow.

Primetime and overnight showings of the Opening Ceremony are then planned.
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