Beijing’s Olympic opening ceremony was spectacular. Sunday’s closing ceremony, which is also being directed by Chinese filmmaker Zhang Yimou, promises to be another must-see extravaganza.
NBC Sports executive David Neal, in an Associated Press story, said he traveled 90 minutes west of Beijing to see a rehearsal of the ceremony conducted in secret on a college campus.
“It’s just unlike any other closing ceremony I’ve ever seen,” Neal said.
Sunday’s closing is also expected to feature an eight-minute segment from London, site of the 2012 games, with Michael Phelps, David Beckham and a performance by singer Leona Lewis with Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page.
The opening ceremony was seen by 34.2 million people in the United States, a bigger audience than this year’s “American Idol” finale.
NBC will tape-delay the closing ceremony for its 7 p.m. EDT telecast. Bob Costas, wrapping up his eighth Olympics as a host for NBC, will anchor the closing ceremony with Dan Hicks, Mary Carillo and Joshua Cooper Ramo, NBC’s China analyst.