Mark Burnett insists only one Apprentice was planned for Martha

News that NBC decided to not pick up a second season of The Apprentice: Martha Stewart has been met with annoyance by the show’s network, executive producer, and star.

Mark Burnett says that while multiple seasons were discussed early on, those quickly faded. “In the very beginning we thought about doing more than one, but the minute it was decided to do the daytime show it was never ever on the table,” he tells The Washington Post’s Lisa de Moraes.

He even says that he and NBC execs “sat down before the first episode and jokingly talked about how … if it did ‘Desperate Housewives’ numbers it would be a little embarrassing because there won’t be a Season 2.”

The show wasn’t a franchise, Burnett says, but “really more a reintroduction, more of a marketing and publicity tool.” He also admits that having two similar shows on at the same time “probably split viewership.”

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