LOS ANGELES, Aug. 14 (Doug G. Ware) — Celebrity Apprentice will return to NBC. Controversial Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump won’t.
Network entertainment chief Bob Greenblatt confirmed Thursday that the reality show will return in the future, sans The Donald, but wasn’t sure exactly when.
“We are obviously looking for a host of that show that will make noise and will be a big personality,” he said. “There are a few people out there that fit that bill.”
Trump ignited a global catchphrase — that was delivered with an axe-like hand motion — during his tenure on the show every time a contestant was eliminated in the mock boardroom: You’re fired!
This time, though, it was Trump who seemingly faced the business end of that tag line.
“I don’t think somebody who is running for president and might possibly be the next leader of the free world should be banned from activity with NBC,” Greenblatt said of rumors that the network has a standing order that Trump isn’t allowed on NBC’s air waves. “At the moment, we’re sort of separated.”
When reporters asked Greenblatt whether it’s possible Trump might someday return to the show, he was absolute.
“I’m going to end this with two words: Absolutely not.”