Must-Read TV: Warren Littlefield Penning Memoirs

The former NBC chief signs a deal with Doubleday to reveal the untold story of Thursday nights– and NBC’s rise.

Last Updated: November 5, 2009 @ 3:17 PM

Former NBC Entertainment chief Warren Littlefield — one of the architects of Must-See TV– is writing his memoirs.

Doubleday has bought the rights to the untitled tome, which Littlefield will pen with author/screenwriter T.R. Pearson. It’s scheduled to be published in 2011.

Reached at his Burbank offices, Littlefield told TheWrap that after he left NBC, he bundled up all of his Peacock-related possessions from that era and put them in a storage locker.

"But then, I realized it had been 10 years (since leaving NBC), so I went back to the storage unit and started going through everything," he said. He had thought about a book before, but now, "I said to myself, ‘I want to do this’."

Littlefield said the book will focus on the evolution of "Must-See TV," the blockbuster primetime lineup that included shows such as "Seinfeld," "Friends" and "ER." At one point, an average of 75 million Americans watched all or part of the Peacock’s Thursday lineup.

"There was a moment in time where, on one night, at one time, everyone in America said, ‘I need to go to my TV set. And if they didn’t they didn’t show up for work the next day,’" he said. The book, Littlefield explained, will look at "the alchemy and the obstacles that made it all come together."

No doubt Littlefield will focus on the hits, since that’s what sells books. But we’re hoping he’ll spend at least one chapter talking about the shows that didn’t work on Thursday (like "Boston Common").

Littlefield remains active as a TV producer, with a first-look deal at ABC Studios and offices on the Disney lot. He’s also a board member of DDD, a 3-D TV company which recently signed his Littlefield Co. to a deal in which Littlefield will help find programming for the just-about-to-pop 3-D technology.