American Dreams Heads to Kansas City

Kansas City, here comes American Dreams after all.

NBC and the producers of the Sunday-night drama have rented a theater to show the Nov. 30 episode to diehard fans in the market this Saturday at 7 p.m.
That episode, part of a three-story arc about JJ’s departure for Vietnam, was preempted by NBC affiliate KSHB-TV, Kansas City, which was reportedly obligated to air a movie. Fans of the show complained to the station, which prompted a story in The Kansas City Star by TV writer Aaron Barnhardt. That story, in turn, spurred show creator and co-executive producer Jonathan Prince and NBC to make those fans a holiday present of the missing episode.

The result is that they are renting the theater, supplying the print, and flying in Will Estes, who plays JJ, to meet and greet the faithful in Missouri. American Dreams publicist Grace Niu called it a chance to show viewers that "we’re not just concerned with the L.A. and New York markets."

NBC approached local oldies station KCMO-FM to give away passes to the show. Radio giveaways are a standard procedure for promoting screenings and not a knock on KSHB-TV. "They have been supportive of the effort," Niu said, though not involved in the screening. KSHB-TV plans to cover the screening as a news event, she said. The Screenland theater seats 150 (folding chairs, actually, since the facility is still under construction), but, if turnout is heavy, NBC plans a second showing.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.